5 Bathroom Remodel Mistakes (and How You Can Do Better)
Steer clear of these pitfalls.
Think you’re ready to dive headfirst into that beautiful bathroom remodel? Not so fast… We’ve seen the pictures and horror stories: half-finished bathrooms with no running water, year-old materials already falling apart and worse. Take heed of these pitfalls to make sure your new-look bathroom is finished on time, in style and without the migraines.
- Putting carpet anywhere: ANYWHERE. Say no to bathroom carpet. Moisture is going to take its toll on practically any surface, but properly installed natural stone will hold up as well as anything. Even mid-range linoleum will struggle with prolonged puddled water, which is just a reality in a family bathroom. Carpet, though, is a disaster waiting to happen. If you absolutely must have a plush surface to stand on in your bathroom, we recommend a memory foam mat – extra luxurious, easy to replace.
- Covering up previous renovations: It’s tempting to merely cover up a previous homeowner’s shoddy DIY job – but not only could this lead to other issues to fix down the line, it could also be dangerous. Trusting another worker’s questionable electrical work, especially around moisture, is asking for trouble. Starting from scratch with your bathroom remodel gives you more peace of mind you’re doing the job right, and can also give you more opportunities to change up the layout for the better. The same goes for plumbing: it may seem straightforward, but one component not completely sealed-off can wreak havoc in your newly spruced-up bathroom. Take care that your plumbing and electrical, in plain sight and behind the scenes, has been properly installed for your new layout and fixtures.
- Leaving the layout as–is: If you’re taking the time and money to give your bathroom a new look, you might as well get the layout right! Bathroom designs from homes of all eras have gotten the layout completely wrong, so you may want to have a professional at least suggest some alternatives. Or, try plotting out your current bathroom using a free floor-plan app to toy with new layouts yourself.
- Ignoring hidden issues: Mold is a serious issue in many bathrooms – many more, in fact, than might be obvious. Most strains of these moisture-loving fungi can make healthy people sick, and some can cause significant illnesses. If you’re a new homeowner and are appreciating the fresh coat of paint in your otherwise behind-the-times bathroom, there’s a good chance the previous homeowner had something to hide. Check inside cabinets, around pipes and any other tricky spaces. If you have any reason to believe mold has reached structural wood, you’ll want to conduct a mold test to know what you’re dealing with before you’re invested in the renovation.
- Contracting without research, or DIYing without experience: Homeowners often try to get the biggest bang for their buck by taking on tasks that aren’t really safe, DIY territory. Others simply choose the cheapest contractor for the job. In both cases, the bathroom – and family – are at the mercy of the worker’s time management skills. In the case of tile setting, for example, starting but not finishing the project can actually ruin the material before it’s ever set. Your bathroom isn’t the place to cut corners. Find a contractor with at least three positive references for the best chance of your project going the way you expect – the first time around.
Firenza Stone provides a wide range of premium stone for bathroom remodel projects, and Transitions by Firenza Stone can also connect you with leading contractors and designers in the greater Cleveland area.