The Cost of Remodeling a Bathroom: Everything Considered

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Remodeling a bathroom is all but cheap.

You need to plan ahead of time to start a bathroom remodel to ensure that you get the desired outcome from the project without having to drain your savings completely.

There are a lot of things to consider when setting the budget for a bathroom renovation project.

You need to know what it is that you are looking for primarily; is it the appearance of the room or the functionality?

Mostly, when people remodel their bathrooms, they are more focused on the look of the place, even though typically the reason behind the project is improving the bathroom’s functionality.

Regardless of the purpose of a bathroom remodeling, one thing that remains universal is the exorbitant cost of it.

But depending on the homeowner’s intention, they can save up on certain aspects while going all out on others.

That is, if a person wants to have Italian faucets in their bathrooms, then they can scrimp on the cabinetry (whether they should or not is another matter altogether) to accommodate the fancy taps.

Being stingy when it comes to the look of your bathroom is possible, but trying to save money on the functionality of the room is a recipe for disaster.

That is, saving money on the plumbing or wiring of a bathroom is only going to cost you in the future.

Even if you are successful in saving up some dollars trying to get cheap plumbing or wiring, the chances of it going haywire and costing you more money than you initially saved are much higher than you’d like.

To avoid making such a rookie mistake, learn about the financial workings of a bathroom remodel in detail to know exactly how much you’ll need to undertake such a project without having to compromise on the look or the functionality of the place.

Cost of a Bathroom Remodel

Counting Money

Typically, the average cost of a bathroom remodel can be $10500.

Most consumers spend anything between $6000 t0 $15000 on a bathroom renovation project.

Getting the most basic changes in a bathroom only can cost up to $4000 to $7000 in a small or medium sized bath.

Things can get costlier as the size of the bathroom gets bigger. On a master bathroom, a homeowner can spend up to $25000 or more.

The total cost of a bathroom renovation project is mostly divided into three particulars; the cost of labor, the cost of plumbing and wiring, and the cost of bathroom appliances and fixtures.

The cost of labor takes approximately 50% of a bathroom remodel’s total budget.

The standard price of labor is $65 per hour but it can vary in different parts of the country.

However, the cost of material remains roughly the same across the country.

Rough Estimate

  • National average: $10,475
  • Typical range: $5,979 – $14,934
  • Low end to high end bathrooms: $2500 to $25, 000

These are rough averages, the cost of a bathroom remodel can vary depending on the extent of damage that needs to be fixed and the quality of fixtures used.

Understanding the Basic Cost of a Bathroom Remodel

Numbers on Paper

Bathroom remodel costs can be anything from 2,500 to 25,000.

Large master baths in a luxury home can even cost around 50, 000.

However, typically a household spends anything between 5,000 and 15,000 for a complete overhauling of a bathroom.

The cost of labor is usually 50% of the entire project’s cost but it can vary from 40% to 60% (of the total expenditure), depending on your location.

As the living cost changes in different localities, so does the cost of labor.

In areas where the cost of living is high, the cost of labor is consequently, high.

When coming up with a budget for a bathroom renovation project, make sure you factor in all the following particulars

  • The size of the room
  • Regional pricing differences
  • Quality of materials
  • Changing of flooring
  • Types of appliances and fixtures

The Detailed Cost Breakdown of a Bathroom Remodeling

Let’s dissect each phase of bathroom remodeling in detail and find out the financial resources needed to tackle each phase.

Planning Phase

Bathroom Renovation Plan

The first phase of any bathroom renovation project involves planning and layout designing.

Hire a professional who will quote you an estimate depending on the changes needed in your bathroom.

The planning phase of a bathroom remodel gives you a rough idea of the budget you are going to need to keep aside for the entire project.

The lump sum price that you get may increase or decrease depending on the materials used.

You should also keep aside a contingency budget because you never know if an entire mold settlement exists underneath the flooring.

Once the scraping of the paint and the tearing of walls begin, you will know about any hidden expenses that might be waiting to show up.

The designer you hire to come up with designs and blue prints for your bathroom can charge you any amount between 1400$ and 4500$.

You may have to pay for the materials that are typically order during the planning phase of a bathroom remodel.

And while you wait for the goods to arrive, your contractor and their team starts tearing down the bathroom.

Plumbing and Wiring

Once the bathroom is turned upside down, the plumber and electricians take over to install new wiring and plumbing fixtures.

A plumber typically charges 45$ to 65$ an hour while an electrician can charge up to 65-85$. These rates can vary based on your house’s location.

The most basic plumbing and wiring costs under 100$ an hour, if any underlying issues are uncovered during the process then the cost of plumbing and wiring can even exceed 100$.

Therefore, its always good to have a contingency budget for the project.


Two Women Choosing Tiles

Flooring of a bathroom can have varying costs depending on the tiles and its size you choose.

On an average, flooring costs 5-10$ per square foot. If you go for expensive flooring options then this cost can go up to 80$ per square foot.

The Cost of Appliances in the Bathroom

During a bathroom remodeling, the homeowner may or may not get all the appliances changed in the room.

They might keep the existing tub or sink if it’s in good shape.

Here is a breakdown of the cost of all the appliances a bathroom can have:

Appliances Cost % of the total Budget
Fixtures (toilets, sinks) $200-$1,800 10%-20%
Showers $300-$3,000 5%-25%
Bathroom vanity costs $300-$3,800 10%-30%
Countertops cost $200-$1,000 5%-10%
Lighting $100-$400 5%-7%
Bathroom fan costs $50-$300 2%-$5%
Flooring costs $200-$1,350 10%-15%
Entry doors and windows cost $200-$1,800 8%-10%
Painting costs $150-$550 5%-6%
Faucets and plumbing $250-$1,450 12%-16%

The cost of Labor

The cost of labor is not fixed all across the country, however it takes away most of the budget set for a bathroom renovation.

Whenever you pick put a team to work on your bathroom, ask  them for a detailed bid and invoice that covers all the possible expenses that may incur over the course of the renovation project.

On average the cost of labor runs up to 50 to 75$ an hour, which makes up 40-60% of the total bathroom remodel cost.

The cost of labor includes the cost of non plumbing and non-wiring labor.

That is, the cost of installing tiles and putting up cabinetry is also a part of the large sum of labor cost that a homeowner has to pay during a bathroom remodel.

The detailed breakdown of the total labor cost is:

  • General contractor fees $300-$400 per day.
  • Hiring a plumber costs: $1,000-$2,000.
  • Non-Plumbing Labor: $4,000-$8,000.
    • Interior design fees of $100-$500.
    • Electrician fees of $50-$100 per hour.
    • Drywall installation prices of $30-$50 per hour.

Labor cost by main cities compared to the national average

Man Working In Bathroom
  • Akron, OH-6%
  • Armonk, NY+55%
  • Athens, GA-9%
  • Birmingham, AL+6%
  • Butler, KY-43%
  • Carrollton, TX+14%
  • Carson, CA+9%
  • Charlotte, NC+6%
  • Chicago, IL+40%
  • Dallas, TX+10%
  • Danbury, CT+43%
  • Davenport, FL-15%
  • Edmond, OK-8%
  • Gaylord, MI-15%
  • Hazelhurst, WI-9%
  • Homestead, FL-2%
  • Houston, TX+24%
  • Inglewood, CA+9%
  • Inkster, MI+16%
  • Irving, TX+10%
  • Kennesaw, GA+10%
  • Las Vegas, NV+7%
  • Los Angeles, CA+11%
  • Miami, OK-54%
  • Norman, OK-21%
  • Onsted, MI-6%
  • Peyton, CO-4%
  • Plainwell, MI-1%
  • Rockaway, NJ+31%
  • San Carlos, CA+44%
  • San Francisco, CA+53%
  • Savage, MN+13%
  • Smyrna, GA+10%
  • Southfield, MI+29%
  • Stuart, FL-21%
  • Temecula, CA+1%
  • Tucson, AZ-19%
  • Whittier, CA+11%
  • Willoughby, OH-15%
  • Yonkers, NY+33%

The Cost of Lights

Installing Bathroom Light

Having natural light in bathrooms is a relatively new concept.

Homeowners are warming up to the idea but there is still a long way to go.

Even now people like to install bulbs and sconces in the bathrooms to create an ambience in the bathroom.

Light Price
Shower Lights 20-40$
Sconces 40-100$
Light/Fan combinations 40-100$

The Cost of Cabinetry

Storage is an important aspect of any bathroom. You can never have enough storage units in your bathroom.

So when homeowners undertake bathroom renovation they mostly make sure to get as much cabinetry as possible.

Typically, two kinds of storage units are used in bathroom; linen cabinets and over the John storage.

Linen closets or cabinets store towels and other linen sheets while over the John is used to keep toiletries and bathroom rolls.

The cost of Linen towers (also known as hotel shelves) is traditionally 20-100$

The cost of over the John cabinets is usually 50-200$.

The Cost of Tiles

Material Cost
Glass tile (glossy or matte tiles) 10-30$/sq.ft
Natural Stone(marble, granite, limestone, slate or travertine tiles) 5-20$/sq.ft
Ceramic (Glazed tiles) 1-5$/sq.ft
Mosaic 1-100$/sq.ft
Porcelain (Clay tiles with color through body) 5-20$/sq.ft
Large format (any tile over 12 inches in size) 5-20$/sq.ft

Master Bathroom and Powder Room

Master Bathroom Renovation Plan

The total cost of a bathroom remodel can be significantly affected based on the size of the bathroom.

That is, if you decide to get your master bath remodeled, it’s going to cost you more than the cost of remodeling a powder room.

A powder room is a small bathroom that contains a toilet and sink. It may or may not contain a shower.

Meanwhile, a master bathroom is a large room that typically contains a showerhead and a bathtub with a toilet and sink.

It may also contain large storage units to accommodate as many towels and toiletries as possible.

In some over the top master baths, consumers like to install Jacuzzis as well during a remodel.

Adding a Jacuzzi can significantly add up to the cost of a bathroom remodeling.

The minimum average cost of a Jacuzzi jetted tub can be 600$ per unit while the maximum average cost of a Jacuzzi jetted tub can be 15000$ per unit.

You can manage the cost by compromising on the features of the Jacuzzi if you want to have one in your bathroom at any cost.

A Jacuzzi jetted tub is a feature of large baths, its unlikely to find one in a powder room, also known as half baths.

Due to the difference in size of the two bathroom types, the cost of remodeling them varies significantly.

Degree of Remodeling Cost
Full master bath remodel 20000-40000$
Partial master bath remodel 10000-30000$
Full bathroom remodel 5000-15000$
Partial bathroom remodel 3000-10000$

Spending money uncontrollably during a bathroom renovation project is common.

When it comes to breathing new life into a bathroom, homeowners tend to go all out.

However, in the rush of everything, people may not realize that they can save money with just a little bit of extra planning and frugality.

It’s good to get high-quality materials for your bathroom, but sometimes you may not require top of the line fixtures and a mediocre brand may work for you just fine.

If you want to remain thrifty when getting a bathroom remodeled, then here are some ways for you to cut down your bathroom renovation costs.

Ways to Save Money During a Bathroom Renovation

Prioritize Improvements

Cleaning Faucet

Prioritizing improvements is imperative when it comes to saving money on a bathroom remodel.

You need to assess the damage in your bathroom that needs immediate attention.

If some aspects of the room are not in dire need of TLC (tender love and care), then consider letting them use or reusing them.

That is, sometimes, the faucets in your bathroom can live on for a few more years.

So just because you are getting the place remodeled doesn’t mean you should change those beautiful faucets.

Take them out and keep them safe. Once your bathroom is ready for them, install the same faucets.

You can have them polished for a brand new finish, and that will not cost you much.

Don’t Change the Layout

If you really want to save those your hard-earned dollars, then keep the layout of your bathroom as before.

Changing a room’s design means bulldozing the entire space and starting from square one.

It’s like getting an entirely new bathroom.

Unless there are functional issues with your current bathroom that can only be fixed by tearing it down and building a new one, try keeping the layout of your bathroom the same.

It’ll save you tons of money.

Do a Little DIY

Couple Choosing Bathroom Color

You don’t need to hire professionals for every tidbit of your bathroom.

Try doing some of the heavy lifting yourself to save money.

Painting is a relatively easy task unless you want to install some technical wallpapers, then you need to hire experts; otherwise, you can paint the bathroom yourself.

Furthermore, you can take care of the faucets yourself.

Take them out before your contractor arrives and use the saved up money to treat yourself later.

Try your hand at Demolishing

With the correct tools, you can demolish your existing bathroom if you plan on getting a new one.

Make sure not to damage the underlayment or the wiring in the process.

With sufficient pressure, you can break apart your bathroom without any help.

Use LED lights

Installing new windows for natural lights can be more expensive than you think.

Try going for LED as they light up any room brightly without adding to the electricity bills.

Moreover, they are easier to install, and their installation doesn’t cost a leg and an arm.

You will a sufficiently lit, environmentally friendly bathroom by installing LED lights without straining your pocket.

You can even install solar tubes if it’s a feasible option for the layout of your bathroom.

Compare Materials and Brands

Man Choosing Toilet

Don’t jump to conclusions and buy whatever catches your attention.

Look around a bit and compare brands before choosing a material for your bathroom.

Some brands can hugely differ in their cost but offer the same features in their products.

Try to explore the market before buying a product for your bathroom remodeling.


A bathroom remodel is inarguably expensive.

If you want a modern, aesthetically appealing bathroom with the best possible functionality, then you need to have a big budget.

But if you are willing to compromise on a few things, then you can get a bathroom remodeling with a limited amount of money.

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