Quick & Easy Bathroom Updates
If you’re thinking about updating your home, whether you want to sell in the future or not, the bathroom is a good place to start…it’s small. Whatever you are considering in the way of projects will cost less, and if the look isn’t quite right, you most likely can change it without great cost. Starting with easy updates for a tired bath will most likely get you motivated to tackle larger projects that might also be a little tired.
If you are preparing your home for sale the most important rooms to give some love are your kitchen and bathrooms. Most buyers will scrutinize these rooms, looking for updated features. The majority of today’s home buyers tend to want move-in ready. They aren’t looking for too many projects to face to make the home there own. Here are some easy steps to get started in the bathroom.
Painting the Bathroom Walls
Painting the walls is inexpensive and will provide an immediate change in the look and style of a room. Faux techniques are great to try in a small room like the bath, and if they don’t work, can be repainted the next day.
If you’re trying a new color and are unsure, the bathroom is a good place to start. A bathroom is a good place to try trendy paint colors this year, that go with your overall decor. A small dose of some colors goes a long way.
The “new neutrals” include subdued tones of many colors…neutrals go way beyond beige for today’s trends. Grey can serve as a neutral, allowing for bright-colored accents.
Important Note: Bathroom-formula paint should always be used to help prevent mold and mildew.
If you’re not ready to replace the bathroom floor, there is the next best option to consider… divert attention upwards. To get the look of old fashioned tin ceilings, there are several ceiling tile wallpapers available which are paintable. This textured wallpaper gives the impression of embossed plaster and will keep visitors looking up.
Another option is a ceiling-sized stencil, some paint and crown molding, to create a one-of-a-kind ceiling space. Ceiling tiles and panels are also an affordable way to add style and interest.
Staying at ceiling level, a space-saving addition to consider is a narrow shelf over the doorway, just wide enough to hold extra rolls of toilet paper. A six-inch deep shelf can be supported directly on the door frame, held in place by a small bracket. You can use wall shelves to house decorative items that take up too much space on the vanity.
Even with a new ceiling, the bathroom floor can’t hide forever. Wood floors are a popular option in most homes today, but homeowners shy away from wood floors in a wet environment such as a bath. Fortunately, it’s possible to have both the warm look of wood and the durability of vinyl today. Vinyl planks are available from most home supply stores and come with textured finishes that
Vinyl Planks – BobVila.comsimulate real wood. Finishes include oak, maple, bamboo and other exotic woods. Cost can range from $1 to $4 per sq. ft., and the small size of the room makes it possible to lay a new floor in a day or two.
If the vinyl floor is looking tired and worn out, a coat of paint and five to six applications of polyurethane can give a floor a whole new look. To do the job, first prime the floor with a specialty primer. You can use a stencil to mimic a tile pattern or to create a border.
One decorator has experimented with using brown paper bags to create the look of leather or stone on a bathroom floor. She suggests tearing off irregular pieces of bag, gluing them to the floor and topping with four to six coats of polyurethane.
If you have funds for something more, there are a number of manufactured wood products that are designed specifically for the bathroom. Ceramic, stone, porcelain and manufactured stone products are more affordable when you consider the square footage is small…it could be just the place to splurge!
Small Changes in the Bathroom
Even a change as small as replacing hardware can give a bathroom a much needed lift. Toilet handles, cabinet handles, and door hardware and towel racks can all shine brightly and give the bathroom some sparkle. Incidentally, If your bathroom is still sporting the 80’s brass look, you’ll certainly want to give it back to that decade!
You can even change the hardware and trim on a shower stall from gold to a trendier color, and without removing doors or other shower hardware. You can use 220-grit sandpaper, steel wool and elbow grease, for starters. Once the hardware has been thoroughly scraped, apply spray-on automobile primer. Metallic spray paint in black or another color goes on last. You can even use this technique for shower fixtures.
Simple things like a new toilet seat and faucets are relatively easy and inexpensive fixes. Along the same line, a new or refinished bathroom mirror will add focal interest, reflect light and won’t flush the budget down the drain.
Lighting is a quick and easy update to accomplish. Any big box store will have a lot of contemporary light fixtures to choose from, at an affordable price. Keep in mind the various task lighting that is necessary in the bathroom and don’t be afraid to “light it up”.
Today’s decorating trends emphasize creating a spa-like atmosphere in the bathroom. With that in mind, you can certainly add a touch of glamour with a lamp or even a chandelier, if it fits with your decor and style. A small touch of luxury goes a long way in a room like a bathroom.
Painting Your Vanity
If your vanity is in good shape, but just a little dated, you can try your hand at painting it to give the bathroom an update. There are many ways to paint a vanity, depending on the material.
Chalk Paint is all the rage, and many find that it’s ease of use and the lack of prep required make it a great alternative. It’s relatively easy to get exactly the look you want, whether its an antiqued look, a shabby chic style, or a modern finish. You just have to make sure you use the proper top coat to keep the moisture at bay.
Check out my Pinterest Board for Chalk Paint Tips and Tricks:
Updated Decor and Accessories
Fresh new towels and bathroom decor can make a big difference for such a small investment. You can quickly and easily breath new life into a tired bathroom with some shiny and bright candles, small artworks for the walls, and a stylish new soap dispenser set. Even a beautiful new trash can will add to the aesthetic!
Thanks to our favorite home inspector, David Goldberg, for an excellent guest article. It’s great advice for some easy updates for a tired bath.
David Goldberg – Home Inspector
Reliable Home Services
ASHI Member #101584
MD License #29322
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If You have a remodeling project in mind, contact us for a list of professionals we’re proud to recommend.
Chris and Karen Highland with eXp Realty