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THE CHALLENGES OF RENOVATING A SMALL SPACE WITH WET AREAS CAN MAKE BATHROOM UPGRADES COMPLICATED AND COSTLY – CHECK OUT THESE IMPORTANT TIPS BEFORE YOU START WORK.
Do work out a budget in advance
When it comes to updating your bathroom, there are a lot more costs than meet the eye.
Carpenter and builder, Dean Ipaviz, warns, “Unfortunately when renovating, a lot of people get caught out focusing on the end goal and what the project is going to look like, and they forget about a lot of unexpected hidden costs.”
When you’re creating your budget, don’t forget demolition works and waste disposal, as well as the cost of moving doorways and levelling floors to ensure there’s not a step when entering the bathroom.
“[You] need to make sure you’re really doing your homework with this space,” says Dean, “It’s always going to be a costly part of the renovation.”
Above all, be sure to build in a contingency plan for those unexpected costs that may crop up.
Use mirrors alongside larger windows and higher ceilings to make a small space feel larger.
“Mirrors are a great way of opening up spaces”, says Dean, “It’s a really cost-effective way of making a room feel much bigger.”
Mirrors achieve this by amplifying light (unlike conventional walls, which absorb light). If you’re able to position your mirror where it will reflect light from a window, you can virtually double the natural light in your bathroom.
Do comply with waterproofing regulations
As per Australian Standards, shower floors and walls (to a minimum height of 1800mm) must be waterproofed. Outside the shower, waterproofing requirements will depend on what type of floor your bathroom has.
“One of the biggest mistakes Diyers make is they don’t get waterproofing done,” says Dean, “it’s one of the biggest defects people have on any house.”
As a rule, waterproofing is one area where you should engage a professional.
Building and plumbing works are arguably the biggest cost of any bathroom renovation, but they can be minimised with clever design.
Wherever possible, try to keep walls, and key elements such as showers, sinks and toilets where they are when you upgrade them.
This means your plumber won’t need to relocate drainage pipes.
Keep in mind that between your drainage pipes and prized new fixtures, however, new piping may be required to work with that fancy new mixer tap, or to ensure adequate water pressure.
Don’t work beyond your limits
Depending on where you live, rules for what you can and can’t do yourself will vary, so be sure to check the relevant regulations.
Similarly, DIY may void your home insurance policy, so it’s worth a call to your insurance company.