When considering a Portland bathroom remodel, one of the first items on the list is usually budget. After all, how do you know how much remodeling you can do, if you don’t have an idea of what it may cost? An accurate budget estimate can help you answer big questions like whether you can pay for your remodel out of pocket, whether you need to finance all or part of it, or if you can afford to do it at all.
Several factors go into formulating an accurate budget estimate, including where you live. A Portland bathroom remodel may be less expensive than one in Seattle for example, but cost more than one in Boise. So how do you know what yours may end up costing? Here are some ideas and recommendations to help you figure out your bathroom remodel budget.
Getting started: Determine the Scope of Your Remodel
Begin with a broad view of your project and then work toward specifics. Don’t get too caught up in things like specific fixtures or finishes before you really determine if you’re going to gut the bathroom or just do a little face-lift. Start by seeing if your bathroom remodel fits into one of these three categories:
Partial bathroom remodel
With a partial remodel, you are planning to leave some of the finishes exactly as they are. For example, your bathroom may have a good vanity and adequate lighting, so you want to keep those as is. However, you want
to bring in a larger shower. If that’s the case, you’ll want to isolate the costs for the updates, then add about 5%- 20% to cover the costs of protecting the rest of the space you’re keeping intact. You don’t want those areas to be affected when you’re doing demo.
Pull-and-Replace bathroom remodel
A pull-and-replace remodel leaves all of the fixtures, lighting, and walls in their existing locations and refreshes them with new, up-to-date products and finishes, along with a new aesthetic. This is the type of remodel where you feel like you’re stretching the money the farthest because your entire budget goes into things that make a very visible difference. Again, think about the isolated costs here, and then add about 5%-20% to protect the rest of the area.
Major bathroom remodel
When you start moving walls, fixtures, lighting, and maybe some other structural work, you’re looking at a major remodel. This is the most expensive type. You’re making the effort to customize the layout of the space to meet your specific needs. This often involves a significant amount of costly plumbing and electrical work—things that are critical to your project but aren’t as visible as something like the unique tile you selected. However, depending on the project, fixing a bad layout often makes a huge difference in a remodel.
Decide Who Will Do the Work
Start by determining which kind of work model is right for you in order to give you an idea of who may best be able to complete the work. Here are 3 options.
Find a Handyman
You could hire a handyman and supply all the fixtures yourself. This may help you save costs, but will involve more work on your part and a longer timeline. For large bathroom remodels, managing the project and making sure everything happens on schedule is a big job. If you have much more time than money, and aren’t afraid of learning along the way, this could be a good option for you.
Hire an Architect or Interior Designer
Another option is engaging an architect or interior designer and then bidding out the project to select a general contractor. The best way to do this is to get the general contractor on board with the project as early as possible so they can advise on the budget throughout the planning process. If you don’t, costs can quickly balloon as the design process may become out of line with the actual construction work.
Use a design/build firm
If you decide to work with a Design/Build firm you can expect to have a single entity doing the design, costing, project management, and construction. This often streamlines the project from start to finish and can eliminate any nasty budget surprises. But be careful when vetting and interviewing firms. Some focus on remodeling and tack on a little bit of design. Others are mainly design firms that subcontract out most of the work. In order to have the best experience, you want a firm that’s fully integrated and has full-service design and remodeling.
At Lamont Bros. we have full-service design teams and in-house remodeling teams that do the majority of the work.
Find a Partner Who Will Help You Create a Realistic Budget
Whether you choose a handyman, an interior designer, or a design/build firm, it’s important to work with a partner that’s honest and up-front about the construction costs. There are a lot of companies that will tell you exactly what you want to hear. That won’t be of much help when you’re trying to make significant financial decisions.
You’ll also want to work with a company that has a lot of experience in bathroom remodels. If they rarely do the type of bathroom work you need, chances are they won’t be very helpful coming up with an accurate budget.
We have proprietary budgeting tools at Lamont Bros. that interactively create a budget with you. It makes the process really transparent so that you know exactly what’s included in a budget—and what isn’t.
A Helpful Cost Guide
Of course, we’re biased towards the custom budgeting tool we developed, but there is one other general budgeting guide that we’ve found to be pretty helpful. Every year, Remodeling Magazine releases their Cost Vs. Value report. It’s designed to help homeowners understand what remodeling projects cost in their metro area and how much value they add to the home. In our experience, their Portland Metro report corresponds fairly accurately to what you can expect to budget for a Portland bathroom remodel. If you’d like a copy of that report, just schedule a call with us and we’ll be happy to go over it with you.
Lamont Bros.’ Average Portland Bathroom Remodel Costs
There truly is no average bathroom–and no average bathroom remodel cost. However, to help with your planning, here are a pair of sample budgets:
Example #1 – Hall Bathroom Remodel
A basic 5×8 pull-and-replace bathroom remodel with a tile floor, tub with tile shower surround, semi-custom vanity, Quartz countertop, new plumbing fixtures, new mirror or medicine cabinet and new lighting will likely range from about $32,000-$45,000, depending on some variables. Can it get below that? Sure, but that all comes down to figuring out what compromises you want to make and how to make design decisions that save you money. Can it be above that? Of course–there’s always another cool feature that can be added.
Example #2 – Master Bathroom Remodel
A basic pull-and-replace master bathroom is typically much larger than a 40 SF hall bathroom, and it often includes both a tub and a larger custom tile shower, either two vanities, or a double vanity and sometimes a separate water closet. The cost for this type of project can range anywhere from about $48,000-$75,000. As you work through the design process you’ll find that every decision you make about each aspect of your remodel will push that budget lower or higher in that range.
Get Started With Your Custom Budget
If you’re planning a bathroom remodel and want some budgeting advice, schedule an appointment with us and we’ll create an interactive budget specifically for your remodel.
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