It used to be the case that the bathroom was the place to have a quick scrub up, before another family member jumped in the now cooling bathwater behind you. Nowadays, the bathroom is the modern day rival to the spa; a private and quiet sanctuary that we can spend a decent amount of time in while we switch off from our busy lives. You might have noticed that bathrooms have been marked as ‘water therapy zones’ – it’s a clever tactic, picking up on our desire for an energising and relaxing space in the home.
There are all sorts of things that you can do to make your bathroom feel like a mini spa and not all improvements come with a hefty price tag. At the higher end, you could opt for a wet room – a walk in bathroom that’s entirely waterproof, with a drain plumbed into the floor. You can shower without needing to worry about where the shower head is pointing – bliss! Popular as they are, it’s far more usual to stick to your average bathroom, with a bath and shower and simply increase the number of bathrooms or give the existing one a revamp. People expect more than one bathroom these days.
Image source: Arthitectural
For an average four bedroom home, it’s good practice to have two bathrooms, with at least one of the bathrooms containing a bath. You might feel like taking away the bath to maximise your space but it’s not a decision that I would make. Children and the elderly find having a bath much nicer and should you wish to sell your home in the future, potential buyers will like having the choice of a bath or shower. How many times have we all heard a partner express a desire for a nice bath and a glass of wine? Your guide to designing a second bathroom here.
Don’t be tempted to go the opposite way and fill your home with bathroom ensuites. One for the master bedroom is great, but there is such a thing as over the top improvements which are off-putting and costly. It’s far better to opt for quality over quantity and improve your existing bathroom or two. The top improvement isn’t really an improvement at all come to speak of it. Make sure that you solve any damp problems and carry out standard maintenance to remove any peeling wallpaper, missing tiles or dodgy window frames.
Image source: Better Homes and Gardens
Large tiles make a bathroom look bigger than it really is and if you place tiles right up to the top of your walls, you’ll keep damp problems at bay. My tricks are to replace a tile in the shower with a mirror to make shaving easier and mix expensive tiles with more affordable ones. If you’re clever about keeping them looking similar, you’ll get a high-end look on a budget. Just ensure that you can get to the pipes via a carefully placed panel in case you need to access them for repairs later on. It’s no good creating a dreamy bathroom, only to have to rip it up.
Read also our post Art in the bathroom.
To give the room a whole new feel, consider re-grouting and replacing your existing taps. Placing your taps in the middle of the bath will give you that ‘spa’ look, as will removing them entirely and having your bath fill through the overflow.
Image source: John Cullen Lighting
Aside from taps, there’s the temptation to replace all sanitary ware, swapping out the toilet, bath and sink for new models. Before you rip them all out, take a look at how worn they look. If the toilet and bath are of a good quality, you could get away with just renewing the sink. Installing a brand new bathroom suite isn’t always costly however, as long as you don’t have to change the location of the pipes. That’s where the cost starts to creep up. Do it well though and you could add 5-10% onto the value of your home.
For your sanitary ware, there is almost an endless range of materials – from porcelain and limestone to marble and copper and the materials you choose for your sink, bath and toilet should always reflect your personal taste. As for colour, white and sandstone are your best friends. A monochrome look never dates and I’m a big fan of wall-hung toilets and sinks. They make the floor a lot easier to clean and they also maximise space, making the room look bigger.
No matter the look you go for, your top priority should be to create a room that’s clean and warm. If your bathroom is cold and uninviting, you’ll never want to spend any time in it and it will make getting up in the morning that much harder once the winter chill sets in.
No matter what solution you pick for your bathroom, make sure you get an expert opinion before any job is undertaken. At Rated People we have experienced bathroom fitters that can help you with any job. Post your project for free and receive up to 3 quotes from bathroom specialists near you.