Bathroom Remodeling Costs: 7 Ways to Save

If you are just beginning to think about a bathroom remodeling project, you are naturally wondering about the cost. The price varies greatly depending on room size, the number of fixtures you plan to replace, the quality of the materials you choose, and who is providing the labor. You may not have realized that whether your bathroom is on the ground floor or in an upstairs location affects the cost considerably.

Typical Costs of a Bathroom Remodel provides “typical bathroom remodeling costs” on a website that gives you many options to explore. Homewyse says that in the Harrisburg area the estimated cost to remodel a 45-square-foot, first-floor bathroom may range from $8,800 to more than $11,000 if you’re using vendor-supplied labor and “better-value grade materials.”

However, if your bathroom is about 75 square feet, in a complex shape and on an upper floor, your bathroom remodeling cost can be from $11,800 to more than $15,000. Using better quality materials and hiring licensed contractors can increase the cost of your bathroom remodeling job to a range of $14,250 to as much as $20,000.

Do-it-yourselfers can cut those figures. Unfortunately, much can go wrong in bathroom remodeling. The cost-cutting may sound attractive, but you cannot be certain you will save. In bathroom remodeling, a mistake can be extremely costly and you may pay someone more to fix your work than it would have cost for a professional installation in the first place.

Here are 7 suggestions to help you cut some costs in your bathroom remodeling endeavor.

1. Bathroom Remodeling Needs A Plan

Perhaps you think you know exactly what you want. Maybe you do, but there are clients who have a new idea they want to incorporate midway through bathroom remodeling or a change to make somewhere during the project.

That’s why working with a designer is a smart move. Getting everything on paper (or computer screen) allows you to know that the entire project will fit together. It also means you won’t get the commode installed and realize it needs to be a foot to the left. A good bathroom remodeling plan decreases the chances you’ll have regrets when your new bathroom is complete.

2. Don’t Change The Size

Expanding the room size is the most expensive thing you can do in a bathroom remodeling project, according to That website advises: “Resize only if absolutely necessary to accommodate your needs.”

If you must change the room size, be aware that you will be adding thousands of dollars to the cost.

Resizing your bathroom is expensive for two main reasons:

  • Walls – Moving walls requires hours of extra work by experienced, capable contractors who know a load-bearing wall from a non-load-bearing wall.
  • Plumbing –  If you expand the size of your bathroom, your tub, and maybe even your toilet, will be relocating within that new space. Plumbing and its pipes, especially the toilet discharge and sewer pipe, are expensive to move.

3. To Rewire Or Not To Rewire The Electrical System

Your bathroom’s electrical system may be outdated in whole or in part, depending on its age. Before you pay to rewire your entire bathroom, check with your local inspectors or permit office. If your electrical system still meets code, ask if it can be grandfathered in, TheSpruce recommends. If every aspect is not up to code, see if you can have your contractors tweak the system instead of replacing it.

4. Refresh And Reuse In Bathroom Remodeling

You can save many dollars by reusing the fixtures you already own. Polish and fix them so they look good as new.

Start with a “focal point” and design your new bathroom around it. For instance, a terrific new vanity, perhaps with a polished granite top, can be the foundation for your new look.

Consider regrouting the existing tile, replacing faucets and handles on the bathroom fixtures you already own, and re-framing an old mirror for an exciting new look at an exciting, affordable price.

5. Do You Really Need Fancy?

Simple might work just as well as those fancy fittings you’ve been eyeing – and cost considerably less. Using a traditional look creates an elegant and timeless space that will be in style longer and add value to potential homebuyers if you ever wish to sell it.

6. All-Tile Is Not Necessary

Your bathroom does not need tiling from floor to ceiling and everywhere in between for a modern, upscale look. Away from the water points, you can use beadboard, reclaimed wood, or shiplap to give the appearance of high-end design without the cost of installing tile.

If you do decide to use tile, you will save money if you can find someone selling leftovers from their own building project. Craigslist, eBay, and your local sales boards are good places to see what’s available.

7. Use Paint To The Ultimate

Paint isn’t nearly as expensive as other elements in your bathroom and can be used to great advantage. Check out Houzz and other websites to browse color schemes until you discover yours. Use fresh paint on your walls and bathroom vanity and new linens to add the finishing touches to your renovated bathroom.

Adopting these ideas and carefully considering each step of your bathroom remodeling project can save money and regret.

Contact RM Kitchens

If your ever-serviceable bathroom has reached the point where towels and linens in a new color are no longer enough in your remodeling routine, contact RM Kitchens, Inc. We serve the Harrisburg, Hershey, Lebanon, Lancaster, York and Reading, Pa., area (see entire service area) for remodeling jobs. As a full-service remodeling project contractor, we provide professional designers and work with your budget. Like you, we value quality at a sensible price.

About RM Kitchens

RM Kitchens Inc is a custom cabinet maker serving the continental USA. We’re also a full-service bathroom and kitchen remodeling contractor in Lebanon County, PA that serves all of Central PA (including Lancaster, Harrisburg, Reading, York, Hershey, etc) (see entire service area). Focusing on high-quality custom cabinet design, handcrafting, and installing, RM Kitchens has been making homeowner dreams come true since 1969.

To discuss your unique kitchen remodeling needs, contact us today at (717) 967-4038