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Doing Up Bathrooms - Where Does all The Money Go?

Apr 2, 2008
200 pounds to do up a bathroom? I think not! Renovating the bathroom is often one of the most expensive jobs when doing up a house - so why is it so expensive?

When you want to give a bedroom or living room a new look you can do so little by little. First redecorate, then later get curtains sorted and slowly buy pieces of furniture when you can. But if you're doing up a bathroom you've got to go the whole way in one go.

Bathrooms require specialist tradesmen who have training and experience in specific fields. First up are plumbers - one of the most expensive trades and guess what, they are pivotal to a bathroom renovation project. If you are going to move or reconfigure anything connected to water or waste pipes then a professional plumber is essential. But it's worth it. By moving the toilet, washbasin and bath you may be able to free up space and make the room much more appealing. It might even give you space for a luxurious walk in shower.

In order to avoid water damage you need to make sure walls and floors are waterproof, and if you are planning a wet-room then all surfaces need to be thoroughly sealed and watertight. Tiling is a skilled job and needs to be carried out very precisely to achieve a professional finish, so employ a good tiler. Ask him for advice on what sort of tiles work best. Generally the smaller the tiles the more forgiving they will be on less than perfectly flat surfaces.

Underfloor heating is becoming increasingly popular in bathrooms. It provides a pleasant, even heat and a welcome warmth underfoot when stepping out of the bath or shower. And it will free up wall space as you won't need a radiator. But again, it can be expensive and is only worth doing if you are anyway changing the flooring. Depending on what type of system you use you'll need a good plumber or electrician to install it and then a tiler to tile over it.

If you don't want underfloor heating and have not enough wall space for both a radiator and a towel rail then go for a heated towel rail. Not only do they heat up the bathroom and keep your towels warm, nowadays they can also be a real feature. They come in all sorts of shapes and sizes to suit the style of your bathroom, some are truly quirky. Again, you should have one professionally installed.

Good lighting in a bathroom is essential. You might want to go for dimmer lights to achieve a soothing ambiance when you need to unwind but you also need good task lighting for applying make-up or shaving. An electrician will be able to advise you on the best lighting for your bathroom.

Bathroom accessories can be surprisingly expensive. Fancy taps can cost a lot of money, so if you want to save then try soaking taps and shower heads in vinegar or limescale remover and you should get a sparkling result. If you do replace taps then again a professional plumber will install them correctly.
Many families long for a bigger bathroom and its common to knock through a toilet and adjoining bathroom to make one, bigger room. Bear in mind the additional costs especially if load-bearing walls are involved. This alteration definitely has to be done by a good builder and you may even need the advice of a surveyor, to make sure the right structure is put in place.

Doing up a bathroom can be expensive, mainly because of the various skilled trades involved. But it is a good investment and one that you shouldn't have to repeat if the job is done well.
About the Author
Expert home improver India Cooper explores the cost of renovating a bathroom and what specialist tradesmen are required for the job. To find out more please visit http://www.ratedpeople.com/find/bathroom
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