Remodeling a bathroom in your home is rarely a straightforward process. With so many various factors involved in a typical bathroom remodel, it can be tricky to work out how much the entire project will cost you.
Moreover, if you are particularly handy with tools, you may be considering saving some costs and doing a DIY bathroom remodel. In this comprehensive guide, we will work out the average cost of DIY bathroom remodel and compare it to the average cost of a professional bathroom remodel.
The average cost of DIY bathroom remodel sits at around $75 per square foot. Hence, if you choose your fixtures carefully and keep an eye on the budget, a DIY bathroom remodel shouldn’t cost you more than $11,000.
By outlining all the factors involved in a typical bathroom remodeling job, this comprehensive guide will give you a better idea of the average cost of remodeling your bathroom. So, let’s get into it!
When to Remodel Your Bathroom
The most common reason why homeowners spend money on remodeling their bathrooms is to increase the resale value of their homes. Therefore, if you are considering putting your property on the real estate market, a bathroom remodel can easily add thousands to your asking price.
However, you don’t have to invest in a professional or DIY bathroom remodel just because you’re about to sell your home. Notably, there are many other benefits to remodeling your bathroom.
For example, many older properties have old, outdated, and energy inefficient plumbing systems and fittings. Further, if the plumbing fittings in your bathroom haven’t been inspected for many years, there’s a huge chance of mildew and mold.
Inefficient and outdated fittings tend to ramp up your energy bills and create an overall negative effect on the environment. More importantly, the persistence of mold in an enclosed space such as a bathroom can lead to several untold health issues and can cause property damage that could cost you thousands to repair in the long run.
Lastly, performing either a professional or DIY bathroom remodel is an opportunity to install the latest technological innovations in bathroom design, resulting in a modern bathroom that your family members will love to spend time in.
DIY vs. Professional Bathroom Remodel
While you may be considering performing a DIY bathroom remodeling job, even the most seasoned DIYers hesitate before taking on a bathroom remodel. There is no other home project that requires more knowledge of plumbing systems as well as the skills needed to do the job properly.
Moreover, bathroom remodeling also involves electrical work, tile work, and sometimes even woodwork. Notably, if your bathroom is old and hasn’t received much attention in a while, the chances that you will come across a nasty surprise, like a rotting subfloor or mold, during your DIY project are quite high.
If the very thought of discovering a rotting subfloor under your bathroom tiles sends shivers down your spine, you should probably leave your bathroom remodel to the professionals. Lastly, there will be a lot of pressure on any DIYer to get the bathroom up and running as quickly as possible, possibly making the work even more overwhelming.
So, let’s get down to brass tacks. Specifically, how does a professional bathroom remodel compare to a DIY bathroom remodel? Here are two critical points of contrast: costs and time.
While there is no doubting the satisfaction that comes with a DIY job well done, the most significant reason why anyone would perform a DIY bathroom remodel is to save money. The average contractor cost for bathroom remodels sits at around $250 per square foot. Therefore, you’ll probably end up paying a professional between $20,000 and $40,000 to remodel your bathroom, depending on the bathroom’s size.
Meanwhile, the average cost of DIY bathroom remodel for the exact same bathroom sits at around $75 per square foot. This means that if you choose your fixtures carefully and keep an eye on the budget, a DIY bathroom remodel shouldn’t cost you more than $11,000.
Undoubtedly, however, the convenience of having a general contractor do all the heavy lifting is its own luxury that many people consider a worthwhile investment. Hence, it can also be worthwhile to have skilled and experienced professionals do the work better and faster than you can.
While you will be able to save quite a lot of money by undertaking your bathroom remodeling job yourself, the truth is that DIYers take a lot longer to do the same job as compared to professionals. A busy homeowner with a full-time job trying to squeeze in a DIY bathroom remodeling job into their schedule will likely take about 6 months to complete the job.
Meanwhile, you can save weeks, or even months, worth of time by hiring skilled and seasoned professionals to do the job for you. A general contractor and their team of laborers can dedicate most of the hours of each day to your job and can knock out your bathroom remodel in no more than a few weeks.
Simply put, if you only have one bathroom in your home, you should definitely hire professionals as you don’t want your single bathroom to be out of commission for months on end.
Costs Involved in a DIY Bathroom Remodel
A typical bathroom remodeling job involves several kinds of jobs and skills. Below are the most common costs involved in a professional or DIY bathroom remodel.
Plumbing and Wiring
Plumbing and wiring systems in bathrooms are subject to all kinds of regulations that professional plumbers, electricians, and contractors deal with on a daily basis. Therefore, unless you are an experienced plumber and electrician, you should probably leave the plumbing and wiring to seasoned professionals.
The costs involved and skills required to install bathroom flooring depends largely on the type of flooring you have chosen for your bathroom. Vinyl planks, for example, can easily be installed by a DIYer, and hence you won’t gain much by having a professional install this type of flooring.
On the other hand, ceramic and porcelain can be very difficult to install and should be left to professionals. However, this does not necessarily mean that you can’t do a good job of installing these tiles yourself, as learning the basics of tile installation is neither very complicated nor time-consuming.
Installing drywall or moisture-resistant green board in your bathroom is not a very difficult task. However, if you want a flawless job on your bathroom walls, a professional service is the way to go, as they have the experience of doing these jobs practically every day.
If, however, you crave the satisfaction of hanging up your own drywall and are okay with a few flaws in the sanding, you can save a bit of money by installing new wall surfaces in your bathroom yourself.
Cabinets and Countertops
Installing cabinets and countertops in your remodeled bathroom is easily a DIY job. All you really have to do is navigate the cabinets and countertops into place and mount them. Moreover, since bathrooms don’t typically have a lot of cabinetry and since most small bathrooms only have enough space for a vanity unit, this is a job that you can easily handle yourself.
The only advantage of having professionals install cabinets and countertops in your bathroom is that they will get the job done quicker. However, there is nothing so complicated about mounting cabinets that makes the job easy to mess up.
While installing a pre-fabricated shower should be an easy job for most DIYers, installing a shower pan and surrounding walls is a job and a half and should be left to the professionals.
Unless you are a seasoned and highly skilled DIYer who knows their way around shower fixtures, you should avoid installing a shower or tub yourself unless it’s pre-fabricated.
Sink and Faucet Installation
Bathroom sink installation can be easy so as long as water supply pipes run to your sink and drain pipes run out. In this case, there is no need to hire a plumber to install your sink. However, if your sink installation involves relocating plumbing lines, then this is no longer a job for a DIYer, even the most seasoned ones.
Although toilets are heavy objects, they are not complicated to install, and most DIYers can get the job done pretty easily. Hence, there is no reason to hire a plumber to perform your toilet installation unless you’ve already hired one to install your sink and faucets.
Final Words on the average cost of DIY bathroom remodel
While the average cost of DIY bathroom remodel is considerably less than the cost of having a professional remodel your bathroom, it is worth noting that a typical bathroom remodel usually involves several different jobs.
While you should be able to perform some of these jobs by yourself, it is always better to hire a professional plumber, electrician, or contractor to perform the more complicated jobs that require a seasoned skillset.