Things To Think About When Considering a Master Bathroom Remodel

Master bathrooms are among our favorite projects to complete for clients of The Lifestyle Group. Creating a new master suite not only serves as a private oasis, but it also one of the highest return on investment projects you can complete in your home. Why? Because the person who buys your home will appreciate what you have created and that the project is already done so they don’t have to live through it! In our experience, master bath renovations are often one of the later projects to happen in a home because they tend to be among the most expensive to complete. We laugh because we can tell when the kids are off to college (or have just graduated college) based on when we get calls to do the master bathroom!

So, how do you learn more about master bathroom renovation costs and begin to gather remodeling ideas?

Funny you should ask! Our advice is to have a conversation with a licensed contractor who regularly completes master bathroom renovations — like The Lifestyle Group. When a potential client calls us, we explain that master bathroom costs are actually an accumulation of several decisions that result in a price. For example, not all master bathrooms have tubs in them anymore. Will yours? If not, your price could be less than another project that does include a tub. Outlined below are five key areas that tend to drive the cost of a master bathroom remodel. Getting a handle on what you want from these five project cost drivers will help us determine the potential cost of your project.

  1. Will the work be confined to the bathroom space, or will this be a master bathroom and bedroom remodel? In other words, is this a master bath remodel or a master suite renovation?

All remodeling projects can be subject to the dreaded scope creep. We call it the “while you are here” list. For master bath remodels, the scope creep often finds its way into the master closet and master bedroom areas. By understanding the answer to this question right away, we will know if we have additional space to modify during the design phase. Our clients who live in older homes are often in a desperate search to expand their bathroom footprint and this answer is frequently found by stealing space from an adjacent bedroom or closet area. Sometimes homeowners assume they must expand the footprint, but in many cases, the space is already available in the current bathroom and just needs more effective design to maximize the space.

  1. What kind of shower do you want?

Once we understand the boundaries of the bathroom, we shift to focus on the details. We will have in-depth conversations about the shower, asking a series of specific questions about what you want in the shower from both an aesthetic and functional perspective. Questions often begin with the size of the shower, then move to the materials to be used and eventually gravitate to features such as the type of shower door you might want, if any. When the space allows and a shower door can be eliminated, clients frequently opt for walk-in showers with no door.

When completing aging in place and accessibility projects, we often accommodate with zero threshold showers or roll-in showers. While not easy or budget friendly, these approaches certainly reduce the entry barrier into the shower area.

Another key element we spend time talking about is the shower head setup. Some people want a single, simple shower valve. Others want two shower heads, a personal handheld shower, some body sprays and a rain head coming out of the ceiling. Most master bathroom renovations end up with a single shower head and a handheld unit on a slide bar, but once you start adding more features, all bets are off related to cost!

  1. What about your tub?

Whether you choose a soaking tub or a free-standing tub, you will find options at a variety of price points. For families that use their tub every day, the expense often rises because more value is placed on the selection. Most families don’t want to sink the bulk of their available budget into their tub choice; they tend to direct extra funds into shower tile selections and vanity countertop upgrades. Therefore, we recommend choosing a tub that is functional, stylish and reasonably priced.

It’s important to note that many families don’t use a tub at all and would prefer to have a larger shower as opposed to a tub they won’t use taking up space in their master bathroom. Our recommendation is to have at least one tub somewhere in the home. It does not have to be in the master bathroom and that space gained is often used by an expanded size for the shower.

One last quick note: soap and shampoo storage is also a topic of discussion. Recessed niches are a popular solution and can take on a variety of shapes and sizes.

  1. How do you want your vanity to look and function?

From cabinets and countertops to mirrors and more, the options for a master bathroom vanity are almost endless. Given the number of cabinet selections available in the marketplace, we are comfortable saying there is a cabinet style available for every client. If you are taking a midrange approach to your bathroom, then cultured marble or solid surface countertop products will likely be your best option. If you are looking for something a little more luxurious, then granite or quartz combined with undermount sinks will create the beautiful vanity area you’ve been dreaming of! We also give time to the vanity lighting approach, as well as mirrors and other plumbing accessories. These final decision items can make an incredible visual difference for how the bathroom comes together.

  1. What kind of flooring is best for your needs?

A bathroom is not complete without a fabulous floor to pull everything together. Floor tile is often used in higher end bathrooms, but it is important to note that there are products on the market today that are waterproof, have click and lock features, come in tile and wood looks. They also perform very well and at a lower price point than a tile installation. There is no right or wrong decision with any selection you will make.  We strongly believe once you see the product options available, then the best option for your needs will be evident.

Decisions… decisions… decisions…

Master bathroom projects come with many decisions that can affect price point. We know from years of experience that these decisions are all about tradeoffs. Our job at The Lifestyle Group is to be a great partner in helping you understand what those tradeoffs are, as every element of a master bathroom holds different levels of value to different people. Ultimately, we trust that you will be smart enough to understand and decide how you want to spend your own money when the time comes. If you love taking baths, then the tub is important. If you never take baths, you may choose to eliminate the tub from your bathroom design altogether. No matter your preferences, we can help you navigate them.

If anything you read in this blog generates a question you would like to have answered, please don’t hesitate to reach out and ask. We are happy to help, particularly if it means protecting you from a bad bathroom remodeling experience. If you’re ready to remodel your master bathroom and work with a contractor who will help you every step of the way, consider The Lifestyle Group for your next project. We’d love to talk through your vision and build a beautiful, functional space that adds more value to your home and your lifestyle!

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