Bathrooms are not utilitarian anymore. Homeowners not only want practicality and functionality, but also want style, luxury, and convenience. The challenge is, how do you plan a bathroom remodel that can be both useful and luxurious?  Here’s what to consider before remodeling your bathroom.

Gather costs and create a budget

Like any remodeling job, a budget can quickly get blown if you get caught up in the bells and whistles, or never researched the cost in the first place. Before you get started, step back and take a look at what you want to do, and then do your research on what it’s going to cost. Regardless of whether you’re trying to do the remodel yourself or are working with a remodeling professional, it’s important to have an idea of what the costs are going to be. This will include materials, design and labor.  Decide what kind of materials you want and get an idea of what those costs are. Granite or marble countertops? Stock lighting or custom order? Will that new bathtub require a complete replumbing job to accommodate? Gathering costs and creating a budget will help you enjoy the process and the end results without facing a stunning and unanticipated bill at the end.

Consider the functionality of your bathroom

When people remodel their kitchen, they’re very in tune with the functionality aspect. What needs to be in reach?  What’s the flow from the stove to the sink to the table? Oddly enough, the same consideration isn’t always given to the bathroom but it should be! How many people will be using it at the same time?  Do you want a spa-like bathtub or would you rather have a steam shower (or both?). What kind of lighting will you need if you’re putting on makeup in that bathroom? Here are a few key items to consider when choosing a bathroom layout:

  • Vanity
  • Shower
  • Bathtub
  • Shower/tub combo
  • Toilet

What’s the focal point? Is the bathroom adjacent to another room such as the master when it will always be in view? Think not only about functionality by the visuals:  if you’re laying in bed at night, do you want a toilet in your line of sight? Really plan the footprint of your bathroom to make sure it serves your functional and aesthetic needs.

Plan out your color scheme

This might seem like a minor point but it’s not!  If you’re completely renovating a bathroom, you’ll likely be choosing flooring, countertops, sinks, faucets, shower heads, shower tiles, glass, and paint, not to mention other bathroom décor such as mirrors, lighting, towel racks and hooks, etc. Not having a color scheme in mind can result in a mismatched bathroom. Your best bet is to work with a bath design professional who can guide you through how to create a color scheme that you will love.

Plan your lighting

So often overlooked and yet one of the more important aspects of a bathroom both for functionality and style. Consider what light you already have, such as a window or a skylight, and plan from there. The best approach to a well-lit space is to incorporate layers of task, accent, ambient and decorative lighting.  Current bathroom design trends create focus on lighting schemes. To highlight this space, homeowners are using creative lighting techniques, fixtures, and dimmers to create a luxury and relaxing feeling. There are many lighting styles you can use for the vanity area including light bars and wall sconces, or small pendants.

Don’t overlook the hardware

Bathroom hardware includes faucets, showerheads, and knobs, but also includes handles, hinges, towel racks and hooks, and door handles. Make sure you have hardware that’s complementary (not matchy matchy) to each other. If you’re using oil-rubbed bronze for your shower hardware and faucets but your door handles are brass, it’s going to impact the overall look of your bathroom.

Think about technology

To say bathrooms have become high tech is an understatement! There are all kinds of options to add technology to your bathroom including floor heating, under counter appliances such as warming drawers for robes and towels, or wireless music systems. You spend a lot of time in a bathroom; why not make it a luxurious retreat?

Remodeling a bathroom can be a huge project, but an exciting one as well! Having a well thought out plan from the start will help you achieve the bathroom of your dreams!