Visit an upscale spa and notice how the textured stone, airy floor plan, color scheme and flattering lights make you feel relaxed and rejuvenated.
If your current space isn’t calling to you for an invigorating shower or some much-needed pampering, then a bathroom re-do may be just what you need. Taking on this project can clearly benefit not only your mental health, but physical and financial health, too.
No Money Down the Drain
While the beleaguered real estate market has dampened large renovation projects, smaller projects are leading the way to recovery. One project still on the rise is the bathroom remodel, offering strong value to cost-conscious consumers.
In fact, the cost is less today than a few years ago, according to Remodeling Magazine, an industry publication. According to the folks at Grace By Design, a kitchen and bath remodeling company in Anthem, there has been a significant increase in bathroom remodels recently.
And, while you are not likely to recoup the entire cost of the remodel at sales time, a luxurious bath can help a home sell faster and for a higher price.
Realtors often say the most valuable rooms in a house, after the kitchen, are the bathrooms.
The cost of this project can vary wildly. The Grace By Design experts say a simple re-facing job on a double vanity sink would probably run around $500—$600, while a total teardown renovation would run $12,000—$15,000, depending on material selection.
Plan for Your Age
Consider your physical needs for the future. Will someone in your home need grab bars in the shower or tub? Maybe stepping into the tub will become impractical? Would a seat in the shower be a good idea? Implementing these changes now might prevent injury later.
It’s in the Cabinet
If your budget isn’t as big as your dreams, but you really want to change the look of your cabinets, consider a cabinet facelift. By simply replacing the door and drawer fronts, and adding a wood veneer around the body of the vanity, you can get the look of new without the expense.
If you’ve been saving your pennies, and want all the bells and whistles, go for custom cabinetry. You will enjoy the freedom to design exactly what you want, without the constraints of the former fixture.
Current trends in cabinet stains are still in the deeper tones, although complex finishes such as glazing are popular in the Southwest as it creates a warm, rustic feeling. Molding styles range from standard crown, to more detailed versions with insets of rope or dentil. Even balusters are used as trim in to give the vanity a furniture style.
Rock the Counters
Done with builder-standard cultured marble? Craving a bit of color, luster and texture? Granite does for your bathroom what it does for your kitchen. It gives you a great surface that offers practicality, beauty and durability. Quartz offers a huge variety of colors and is also very durable, and travertine slabs are every bit as amazing as their tile counterparts, only without the upkeep of grout lines.
And be sure to choose a great sink to coordinate. Vessel-style sinks come in glass, metal, stone and ceramic. If you prefer a sleek style, go with an under-mount available in a plethora of coordinating colors.
Travertine is (Still) King
No wonder. Easy to care for once sealed, this natural stone comes in a variety of colors ranging from crisp, pale “cremas” to richer, darker “noches.” You can achieve any designer look you want with travertine, from contemporary to rustic. Choose from classic squares with either chiseled or straight edge, or a more elaborate Versailles pattern (different shaped tiles that interlock to create a cobblestone effect).
Backsplashes and shower enclosures can be spectacular when accented with decorative borders and specialty inserts, in materials like highly polished marble, recycled glass or metal etched with classic design icons.
Throw Out the Bath with the Bathwater
Creating one massive shower with all the amenities including multiple shower heads and nozzles, while eliminating a bathtub that rarely gets use, is increasing in popularity. Even a smaller bathroom can have a luxury look when the space isn’t crammed with a narrow standup shower and the requisite garden tub attached.
Opening the space previously occupied by the two fixtures and using frameless glass not only showcases the tile work inside, but gives the illusion of a larger area without the obstacle of a metal frame.
Here’s another easy bang-for-your-buck hint: Replace your towel bars, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures and knobs. Oil rubbed bronze finishes offer an old-world look, while popular satin nickel has a more modern feel. Black and chrome are always classic. For a sense of harmony, match all the hardware finishes. Or, be brave and mix them up: incorporate jeweled, painted and enameled drawer pulls for a whimsical, eclectic look.
From a pick-me-up mood change to a full, big-picture re-do, you’ve got lots of options. Look to specialty mags and online sites for inspiration. And, don’t forget, with the mental, physical and financial benefits, those bath improvements are something you can take to the bank. io