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Home improvement & diy

A Bathroom Remodeling Guide for Every Fixer Upper (Before & After)

 (modified Sep 18, 2023)

Everyone needs a spot where they can relax after a stressful day. The fixer upper bathroom is an ideal area for relaxation because it allows you to create a spa-like atmosphere. It's essentially a place where you need to wash your body and brush your teeth, but it can also provide more comfort if you allow it. However, if your bathroom is not in good condition, it's hard to turn this area into your safe place where you can relax and enjoy the beauty of your daily rituals.

Small bathroom renovations and makeovers are essential because they bring more comfort and functionality into your bathroom. But that's not the only reason why you should consider investing in renovations. They're often necessary if you want to avoid property damage or add more value to your home. If you're looking for new ways to improve your comfort level or make your bathroom functional again, it's time to consider certain renovation and makeover projects that will enhance comfort.

Prioritize Urgent Renovations

Before you add elements and details that will change the aesthetics of your bathroom design, it's vital to create a plan that will help you choose these elements with care. The best thing you can do is write down your priorities and decide what matters to you the most and what components of your renovation projects are essential.

If you notice water around your toilet or tub, your priority should be to seal the cracks and prevent mold and mildew from forming on the walls. On the other hand, if it's almost impossible to take a shower during the winter because you can’t increase the temperature in your bathroom, your priority should be to invest in a heating system that will bring more comfort.

Whatever the reason may be, think about your bathroom remodel before you invest in new options. A list will help you determine the renovation costs, and how much money you need to save for the project.

Essential Tools for Your Bathroom Remodel Project

The tools required for a bathroom remodel will depend on the extent of the project and the specific tasks that need to be completed. Here are some common tools that you may need for a bathroom remodel:

  • Hammer
  • Screwdriver
  • Pliers
  • Adjustable Wrench
  • Hacksaw
  • Power Drill
  • Utility Knife
  • Tape Measure
  • Level
  • Stud Finder
  • Grout Float
  • Rubber Mallet
  • Pry Bar
  • Caulking Gun
  • Add More Light to Brighten Up The Fixer Upper Bathroom

    There are numerous ways to transform your bathroom into a functional and comfortable area, but nothing brings more functionality and comfort, such as natural light. If the bathroom you want to remodel is situated on the uppermost floor, you should consider installing skylights that will bring more natural light into this area.

    Of course, you will also have to invest in a lighting system that will enable you to use the bathroom during nighttime. Skylights are a great choice because your bathroom will bathe in light during the day, which will help you lower the energy bill. They're also very stylish and modern, and they make this area look a lot bigger.

    Opt for a lighting system that will match your new aesthetic. You won't have to invest in a general lighting system if your bathroom is small, because a few wall sconces will be enough to create a cozy atmosphere in your bathroom. If you need more illumination, mount a few pendant lights above the mirror. Try not to install general lighting next to the skylights.

    Bathroom light fixtures
    Step 1: Before you start working on any electrical components, turn off the power to the bathroom. This can be done by flipping the breaker in your home's electrical panel that controls the bathroom's power.
    Step 2: To remove the old light fixture, first remove any covers or shades from the fixture. Then, remove the screws or bolts that hold the fixture to the ceiling or wall. Carefully remove the fixture and disconnect any wires.
    Step 3: Before installing the new light fixture, check the wiring to make sure it is in good condition. If there is any fraying or damage to the wires, you will need to replace them.
    Step 4: Connect the wires from the new light fixture to the wires in the electrical box in the ceiling or wall. Use wire nuts to secure the connections and wrap them with electrical tape.
    Step 5: Once the wires are connected, attach the new light fixture to the ceiling or wall. Use screws or bolts to secure it in place.
    Step 6: Finally, install the light bulb and any covers or shades that came with the new fixture.

    Hide The Toilet for a Modern Approach

    Most designers tend to talk about the importance of bathroom layout, and they do if for a very good reason! The layout will determine how functional your bathroom will be after the renovation. It's vital to learn how to combine the bathroom elements and what should be the focal point.

    For most people, the first thing they see when they enter this area is the toilet. Hiding the toilet from view will make it look more modern and stylish. Keep in mind that changing the layout will require the installation of a new plumbing system. If you don't want to go that far, and your goal is to keep it simple, you can hide the toilet with other elements that will become the focal point in your bathroom. Investing in a larger mirror or vanities will hide the toilet or shift the focus on more important and prettier elements. Don't worry if you can't find a way to hide the toilet. If your bathroom is small, you should prioritize the space and forget about the position of your toilet.

    Choose the Vanity with Care

    It's vital to be careful when choosing a new bathroom vanity. It should be functional and blend well with the surroundings. Vanity should be the focal point in your bathroom, which is why you should take some time to search the market before you make a final decision. It shouldn't be too big, because it will take up a lot of space, nor too small because it won't be practical.

    Your new vanity should accommodate a medium-sized sink, and there should be enough space for a few towels and cleaning products that you use daily. A corner vanity is ideal for a smaller bathroom, especially if you want to put an accent on functionality. Make sure to find a vanity that will stand out, but also keep in mind that it should match the other elements and design.

    Bathroom vanity
    Step 1: Turn off the water supply and disconnect the plumbing from the old vanity. Remove the countertop and the vanity cabinet.
    Step 2: Measure and mark the wall where the new vanity will be installed. Make sure it's level and centered.
    Step 3: If your vanity has feet, install them now. If it's a base cabinet, slide it into place against the wall.
    Step 4: Use a stud finder to locate the studs behind the wall. Drill pilot holes into the back of the vanity and attach it to the wall using screws.
    Step 5: Install the faucet and drain onto the sink before placing it onto the vanity. Connect the water supply and drain to the plumbing.
    Step 6: If your vanity came with a separate countertop, place it on top of the vanity and secure it with adhesive.
    Step 7: If your vanity came with a backsplash, install it now with adhesive.
    Step 8: Attach the doors and drawers to the vanity according to the manufacturer's instructions.
    Step 9: Reconnect the water supply and turn it on to check for any leaks. Clean up any excess adhesive or debris.

    Paint Your Bathroom White For a Budget Friendly Update

    It's hard to create a functional bathroom if you don't have enough space to fit all the elements. It's even harder to make it look more spacious, but there's a simple trick that will solve your problem. Use white shades to repaint your bathroom walls, and you will create an illusion of a bigger space.

    To create a full effect, you should also change the tiles and keep it simple with creamy colors because they will make your bathroom look more spacious. Switching out your old tiles is an easy way to update the color of your bathroom

    Invest in a Good-Quality Shower Screen

    If you're tired of cleaning the area around your shower or tub every time you finish with washing your body, you should invest in a good-quality shower screen. Water can create a lot of damage to your bathroom, and you should do your best to keep the floor tiles clean and dry.

    However, it's easier to avoid these situations than to invest more time after each shower to clean and dry the wet area. Acqua Bathrooms will equip you with good-quality shower screens that will protect your flooring and other bathroom elements from moisture. And if you wish to find more matching elements, they will be able to find something that fits your taste.

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    Organize your Small Bathroom Renovations

    It's vital to organize your renovation project and make sure that everything goes according to plan and budget. It might take a few days before your bathroom becomes functional again, which is why you should use another one, or visit your friends for a couple of days and stay there until the contractors finish their job. Keep in mind that there will be a lot of waste during your renovation project. It's advisable to learn how to dispose of different materials and ensure you're not creating more litter around you.

    Use recyclable materials if possible, and if you need to insulate your bathroom, avoid using Styrofoam. It's non-biodegradable, which makes it very bad for the environment. Clean your bathroom before you start using it again, and make sure to wipe the vanity and toilet at least once a week. Take care of the tiles and furniture, and you will prolong the life of your new bathroom.

    How Much Does a Bathroom Remodel Cost?

    The average bathroom remodelling projects costs around $27,000, according to Remodeling Magazine's 2022 Cost vs. Value Report. This may seem like a hefty amount, however it’s only an average (for a midrange design), and it’s important to remember there’s resale value should you choose to sell your home. The average resale value of a remodelled bathroom is around $16,000, according to the same report.

    The most expensive part of a bathroom remodel is the cost of labor for tile work and plumbing. These are necessary costs if you're doing an extensive remodel. For small bathroom renovations, you can have a more modest budget as you likely won't need to worry about paying for things like rerouting pipe systems.

    Clearing out the debris yourself will save you a lot of manual labor costs. Booking a dumpster to clear the debris of your bathroom remodel is a great way to keep your budget low. Bin There Dump That offers standard rental periods of 5-7 days, but if you need a daily dumpster after that period, let our friendly Dumpster Consultants know in advance.

    Before and After Fixer Upper Bathrooms to Inspire You

    We all need a little inspiration sometimes, so we've curated a list of 6 fantastic DIY pro's who've renovated and improved their fixer upper bathrooms into stylish spaces. Take a page out of their books and find the style that best fits your home aesthetic!


    Turning a neutural bathroom into a colourful space. Kaleidoscope Living Before and After Bathroom

    2. Addicted 2 Decorating

    Hiding the window with an art piece is a clever idea! Addicted 2 Decorating Before & After Bathroom

    3. Caitlin Houston

    The white paint and counter brighten up the bathroom. Caitlin Houston Before and After Bathroom

    4. Lemon Thistle

    Adding darker tones create a modern feel. Lemon Thistle Before and After Bathroom

    5. Momenvy

    Small bathroom renovations can upgrade your bathroom significantly! Momenvy Before and After Bathroom

    6. Remodelaholic

    Repurposing old wood to create a dramatic backdrop. Remodelaholic Before and After Bathroom


    Small bathroom renovations are often vital, and postponing them will add more damage. If you're selling the house, you will have to invest in minor makeovers because no one wants to invest in a fixer-upper. Do your best to create a functional area where you and your family, or the future owners will be able to relax and enjoy long showers after work. If you invest in full renovation now, you won't have to worry about minor improvements at least for the next five years.

    Bio: Patrick Adams is a freelance writer and rock-blues fan. When he is not writing about home improvement, he loves to play chess, watch basketball, and play his guitar. More than anything, he loves to spend his time in his garage, repairing appliances and creating stuff from wood.

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