Bathroom Remodeling Secrets
Most people believe that Bathroom Remodeling is an expensive hassle and dread the thought of tearing up an area of their house that has so much traffic.
If you Design, Plan, and Manage your Bathroom Remodeling correctly, it can be a beautiful space in your home to be proud of while increasing your Home’s value.
A Successful Bathroom Remodel must include:
- Design – you need to make sure you have an appropriate Design for today’s lifestyle. Consider who the bathroom is servicing now and for the future. Evaluate space planning and storage. HVAC and Lighting have always been issues for older bathrooms. Determine what new products are best suited for aesthetics and function.
- Product Selection – make sure any products you select will be on your job site before demolition begins. If there are products that must be customized on site, confirm the materials are in stock.
- Planning – time is of the essence for bathroom remodeling, this is not a project that can get out of hand
- Plumbing – make sure you understand the limits of your existing supply lines, and all plumbing runs and any alterations before you purchase fixtures and faucets. This can have a huge impact on your budget. Most older homes do not have the supply capacity in their plumbing lines to service many of the multi-head/jets fixtures.
- Electrical – today’s bathrooms take much more electrical than ever before. You will probably need additional circuits for remodeling. Make sure you have enough service
- Waterproofing – there are many systems for waterproofing tub/shower and floors, as well as walls. Different installers will have different methods. Be comfortable with the one being used on your home. Check with The Tile Council of North America for more information.
- Always, always, buy or hire, from the NKBA, (National Kitchen and Bath Association) members. These are professionals who are specifically trained in this very detailed business.
- The NKBA has a website that allows Homeowners access to Professionals and information on all it’s affiliate members as well as industry standards and updates.
Next, we are going to help you figure out who is involved in the Kitchen and Bath world.
Bathroom Cabinet Dealers / Showrooms
Kitchen and Bath dealers generally have Showrooms. These dealers typically carry 3-4 different cabinet lines, (although some may be exclusive to one). Almost all Kitchen Cabinet lines make the same cabinetry for bathrooms. They also usually have additional specialty cabinets just for the bathroom.
They may carry some cabinet lines that are strictly dedicated only to Bath cabinetry, which do have special organization and storage components that you would not be able to find in a kitchen cabinet line.
Note:We always recommend special heights for vanity cabinets for the Master Bath since it is just adults using this bathroom.
They also typically have Designers on staff that are CKBD’s, (Certified Kitchen/Bath Designers), by the National Kitchen and Bath Association. Most CKD’s will charge a Design Fee for their work, which considering the investment you are about to make in your home, is worth every penny. Designs these days are generally done on CAD programs.
Detailed Material Selections and Proposals should be provided. Upon Contract, most Kitchen and Bath Dealers that provide installations will ask for a 33% deposit of the total contract, the maximum they can by law. This money basically protects them against the Owner defaulting on the Contract once the non-refundable order is placed.
Big Box Stores
Most of the Big Box stores are selling bath vanity cabinets that are “off the shelf”. This means they are a set where you can purchase a matching sink-top, mirror, etc. The cabinetry seems to be in a “stock”grade.
The biggest downfall of the inexpensive lines is the drawer glides and the vinyl decal exposed ends. The basic construction may be thinner particle boards and hardwoods. Just keep in mind how much use your bath is going to get over how many years you’re going to be using this essential room.
Remember, the “Big Box” stores that just sell cabinets can ask for 100% of total cabinet costs up front, they can since the law doesn’t include them as Home Improvement or Contractors when they don’t have their own employees to install.
Bathroom Appliance & Bathroom Plumbing Vendors
Some of the big plumbing vendors in the market, like Fergusen, now carry Kitchen and Bath cabinet lines also. Some of these cabinet lines are produced by the plumbing manufacturers.
Some larger appliance vendors have also joined in on bath cabinet sales as well.
We always suggest you make sure you are dealing with a Certified Kitchen/Bath Designer or Certified Bath Designer.
There are a lot of great Interior Designers, but unless they are specifically trained with a CKD, CBD, Certified Kitchen/Bath Designer, from the NKBAthey should refer you to a Kitchen Designer for that part of the design. The intricacies of Bath design are never ending. Every fraction of an inch counts in Bath Design, and if you’re not totally familiar with the way cabinets are built, something like a full overlay door opening on a 45 corner can be a nightmare.
Beyond that, new products and how they perform as well as who are good manufacturers and installers are key to getting the most out of a Kitchen/Bath professional. Have your Interior Designer coordinate with your Bath Designer for Material Selections.
Hardware Stores & Lumber Yards
These stores have been carrying Bath cabinets for years, particularly in rural areas. They usually carry the local cabinet company, but now many of the franchises carry the national stock brands.
Carpenters / Handyman
The trusty carpenter who has done many things around your home- even built that beautiful basement. Now he wants you to trust him with the Bath. If you don’t take any other advice from this website, just take this – HIRE A CKD DESIGNER. If you are really smart , you will hire this Designer to do Project Management also. This is a big investment in your home.
Let’s say you have decided that you can do it all, especially since you are replacing everything in the same spaces, so you can’t possibly do a bad design. You might want to take a second look. A good designer can review the same space and suggest different design solutions that may make the space work more efficiently. Whatever the solution, it is worth the Design investment for the potential of the Home.