As you know, we had our bathroom renovated back in the summer – it was a big job, and you can see the progress and makeover posts here and here. I designed the whole room myself *swishes hair*, and it was the first time I had done anything of the sort. It was hard. I so desperately wanted a post of ‘things to know’ when I was planning everything, but I couldn’t find anything! So here goes, some things I think are important before you start planning + working…
Okay, so ours was a big job as we changed everything – the floors, the bath, the shower, the sink, even the door. The only thing that stayed the same was the actual layout and the loo – there didn’t seem to be a need to change this. I took measurements to make sure everything was going to fit – I even thought about getting a smaller bath (didn’t need to in the end, but it’s something to consider if you’re short on space), and searched Pinterest for inspiration.
The planning stage took a long time because I wanted to make sure everything I bought was exactly as I wanted, and also I wanted to get a good deal on what I bought. I’m one of those people who shops around, like ‘Extreme Couponing’ levels of shopping around.
It’s also a good idea to be patient when choosing your fixtures; consult with your bathroom fitters, measure correctly and ask for second and third opinions from loved ones or whatever.
Find Good Tradesmen
We were looking at hiring about seven different guys before we found our builders – it’s really quite hard to find good tradesmen. We needed an electrician (underfloor heating), flooring fitter, tiler, plumber, plasterer… the lot. In the end I found a company through My Builder who are totally awesome, a group of Polish lads who are lovely and tidy and always go that extra mile – we’ve hired them for the kitchen reno and to sand the floors in our flat, and they’re so good.
Ask around for recommendations, personally I prefer not to go with mates or family when it comes to big jobs. I think it takes longer as they’re doing you a favour, but by all means ask your family/friends or (even better) ask them to recommend someone.
MyBuilder is good because you can read reviews, and I also recommend getting a quote from a few places as there’s always a small chance someone may rip you off. Sad but true.
Consider Doing Some Yourself
So when we did the bathroom, our bathroom guy told us he would do us a good deal if we took off the tiles and stripped off the wallpaper. We thought this would be super easy, but because our flat is old, it was a huge job. A HUGE job.
We saved ourselves a few hundred, but it was also quite stressful for us – and we took so much longer than if the guys had just come in (and I think we probably hacked at the walls a bit too, because they stripped and de-tiled the kitchen without asking us haha!). While I do think it’s a good idea to get stuck in and do some yourself, time is money – sometimes it’s easier to just pay a bit more to get the job done quickly and properly!
If It’s Worth Doing…
It’s worth doing right. My one top tip is to follow your heart with your plans – if you really want that radiator moved to the other side of the room so there’s more space, or want to swap the floorboards for tiles, do it! It may seem like a big job, it may cost you a few extra ££, but it’ll be so worth it!
For example, I really wanted to put our bathroom door on a track as it previously opened in to the only storage space we had. I knew it would just be adding to the cost, but I also knew it would be a game-changer. I stuck to my guns, and my dream came alive (lol). It may even be one of my favourite things about the room.
Don’t back down, if you want something done and you know it’ll make you happier in the long run (more plug sockets, underfloor heating etc.), it’s worth paying for!
It’s a stressful but exciting journey, and I really did enjoy the entire process – well, maybe not so much the dusty, bathroom-less stage!
Are you planning a refurb in the future?