Small Bathroom Remodeling Ideas
It is always harder to rearrange objects in a smaller space than it is a larger one, and that's why a small bathroom remodeling job can more taxing on a person than building a large bathroom with more fixtures. Not only do the fixtures have to fit into a smaller area the ergonomics, or 'human fitting factors,' have to be considered.
An example of a consideration that can greatly change the floorplan of a small bathroom is the direction of the door swing. An in-swing door more practical but the arc of the door movement may dictate that the toilet, vanity and shower be placed closer together. And while this may work on paper design may not be too comfortable for those using the bathroom. In other words, the door may open easily but the user may trip over the toilet trying to get to the sink if he or she walks into the bathroom without first checking out the floor plan.
1. Have a Plan
Before buying hundreds of dollars worth of fixtures have a good plan that works. In other words, just because an over-sized, granite-topped vanity is on sale the space may not allow it without getting a smaller toilet or shower cabinet as well. This could cost hundreds more and a huge plumbing bill as pipes and drains may have to be moved to suit the new fixtures.
- Graph and Tracing Paper: The first investment should be graph paper and a pad of tracing paper. Plotting the bathroom space on graph paper makes placing the fixtures easy because it can be drawn to scale. Draw in the present fixtures and take note of the space between them. Also draw in the door arc. Now use a darker pencil to over the lines as this picture will be used as a guideline for experimenting.
- Traces:With the graph paper as a template place the tracing paper on top and draw to scale the fixtures and other units that are wanted in the space.
- Cut-Outs: A more realistic way to figure out if certain fixtures will fit into the space draw scaled images of the items and then move them on the graph paper layout.
- Software:Graphic bathroom designing software can be downloaded for free but for less than $50 a better software can be purchased.
2. The Big Three (Bath, Toilet and Shower)
Some of the most area taken up in a bathroom is the shower and/or bathtub. If a tub is not needed a corner shower unit will save a lot of space and allow more creativity in vanities and bathroom cabinets. This unit can be customized with rainfall shower heads and other additions. For older homeowners, or those with elderly parents or relatives, higher toilets are available to make maneuvering easier.
3. Light it Up
- Lighting: Good lighting, whether from the sun or fixtures, will give the impression of increased space. Wall lighting fixtures, such as sculpted sconces, will give height to the bathroom and can be installed along with vanity and overhead wash lights.
- Windows, Skylights and Natural Light Portals: Natural light from windows and skylights can also give the impression of size but, more importantly, can make a small space more attractive so that extra space may not be needed. Skylights give a bathroom height and can bring in moonlight for a great night look.
- Mirrored Walls and Ceilings.Two or three walls lined with mirrors will five the bathroom an expansive look. It will also exaggerate the other great designs in the room like glass tile and sconce lights.
- Glossed Tiles: Glossy tiles on the walls and shower area reflect light back into the room but also make clean-up easier. Having contrasting, horizontal borders of patterned tiles can expand the view. As well, addition ceiling-to-floor pattern adds height.
Picking the right colours can never be underestimate, and dark shades are not welcome. Most dedicated paint stores will have a designer who can help with colour and other special effects. To get the most of this advice bring along the floor plan and photographs of the bathroom.
Small Bathroom Remodeling Tips
It is important to make sure that changes made in the bathroom will increase, rather than decrease, the total house value. Outlandish tile designs and colours are subject to personal taste and may alert the perspective buyer that a total remodel may need to be done.
2. Plumbing Costs: Try not to move the pipes and drains because plumbing costs can be high. Not only that the floors may have to be taken up to accommodate these changes and this may mean bringing in a carpenter.
3. Bathroom Boutiques: Get free advice from the professionals by visiting a bathroom showroom. Seeing similar fixtures in close proximity will bring more ideas that just looking through magazines or on the internet.
4. Fittings: New shower fixtures and vanity taps can brighten up a bathroom and bring it up to date.
For more information on new renovation trends consult our Contractor Directory or simply post your project online.