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Renovating a bathroom on a budget

8:46PM 18 April 2018

1 Be sly with your budget

If you’ve set your heart on expensive wall-to-wall tiles but are doing a bathroom remodel on a budget, buy just enough of those tiles for the basin splashback, for the shower cubicle or for behind the bath. Then paint the rest of the walls in a colour that is as close a match to the tiles as possible. The bathroom will look fully tiled, but you’ll have saved a fortune.

2 Shop from more than one supplier

Who says you have to have your suite from one supplier? Check out all the different suppliers’ clearance sections, mixing and matching items. As long as all your sanitaryware is white and your taps are all chrome, it’ll be super simple to find styles that complement each other. Just remember to total up and factor in the delivery costs.

3 Dress the window cleverly

Bathroom window treatments are must-haves but need to do lots of tricky jobs, from keeping out draughts on cold nights and letting in light on dull days to being moisture-resistant and space-saving. DIY measure and fit shutters are a faultless budget choice; they’re incredibly affordable and easy to install yourself. Choose from classic white, a hint of soft colour or a bright block shade with our colour matching service.

4 Don’t stretch the budget, stretch the space

Don’t just settle for doing your bathroom up on a budget – why not make it look bigger, too? Here’s how: look for wall-hung sanitaryware and storage designs, which leave more of the floor on show; box in pipework and use the boxing as shelf space; choose the same, large format tiles in a pale tone for both the floor and walls; hang as large a mirror as possible. Finally, make sure the lighting is bright and warm.

5 Tart up tiles

If your wall tiles are plain but in perfectly good condition, you can give them an instant update with easy-to-apply tile stickers. Try Spin Collective’s Spanish designs for an expensive, contemporary, hand-made encaustic look that will fool everyone (and cost pennies).

6 Keep the layout the same

Bathroom installation costs can easily outstrip those of the new fittings, but you can keep the spend down – maybe by as much as £2,000 – by not reworking the bathroom’s layout just for the sake of it.

7 Choose cheaper lookalikes

Have you checked out porcelain tiles lately? They cost a fraction of the price of real stone, wood, even marble, but they can be made to mimic them convincingly. Better still, they’re incredibly hard wearing, waterproof and very affordable. Need to save still more money? Laminate and vinyl lookalikes are brilliant for budget bathroom renovations, too, and – added bonus – they’re warm underfoot.

8 Pick paneling over tiles

Need to save still more money for your bathroom on a budget? Fit moisture-resistant MDF wall panelling instead of tiles. You can paint it to suit your scheme and it can even be applied over existing, outdated tiles, saving you labour costs – or time if you’re DIYing.

9 Fit window film

Can’t afford sandblasted glazing for a bathroom that’s visible from outside, despite the shutters you’ve installed? Window film is an affordable option, providing you with privacy while still letting light shine through your shutters. Ready-to-cut film is cheaper than made-to-measure panels – but both are ideal for budget bathroom makeovers. Try Purlfrost.

10 Frame a mirror

If your space is as small as your budget, buying a super-sized mirror to make the room look bigger might not be practical. So why not go to a glazier and get them to cut as big a piece of mirror glass as possible, then frame it yourself with four lengths of chunky mitred moulding? Use mirror glue to fix it to the wall, pin the mouldings around it, then paint the frame to suit your scheme.