But price clearly isn't the main driver for everyone – 49% of people who used their own installer did so simply because they prefer to and 21% did so because they always use the same tradesman. It's also worth thinking about whether it would be cheaper for your installer to get your bathroom for you, as some companies, such as Travis Perkins and Plumb Center, sell directly to trade, sometimes at cheaper prices. Electrical works, including the installation of lighting, fans, sockets or electric showers should be carried out by a Part P-registered electrician. To find a reliable local tradesperson, check Which? Trusted Trader for recommendations of tradespeople who have been through our rigorous checks. Once your new bathroom or en suite is complete, make sure you gain the relevant building regulations approval, including drainage, electrics and ventilation, and checking that any glass meets the required safety standards. You might need to prove that you've done this when you sell the house.
For an ultra-modern and very practical effect, you could even use concrete. Underfloor heating adds a really cosy touch – as well as helping to dry the bathroom, and prevent damp and mould from forming – if you have hard floors. If you're considering underfloor heating, visit our guide to get an idea of the costs involved. As well as possibly using tiles for your floor, you'll need to use tiles on the walls around the shower or bath, which should be added after they're fitted. You can also get the same tiles for your bathroom walls and floor if you want a streamlined look. Options for wall-tile types include glass, ceramic or natural stone. There are matt or gloss tiles, and you can have small mosaic ones right through to large tiles, which can make a space-limited bathroom feel larger. Tiles can also be used to make a statement – bold colours or different finishes can have a big impact. If they're used sparingly, such as just around a shower or even statement tiles as a strip running through plain white tiles, it doesn't have to be expensive.
Which colour to use in my bathroom? Before making irrational decisions with towels and floor mats, you should be aware of what colours you want for the larger elements in your bathroom. Don't forget that the colour you choose will affect the overall ambience and feeling in the space. White is the go-to colour for most homeowners as it can be combined with other colours to create different effects. Combined with blue, it will house an adventurous underwater flair, whereas if combined with black, it can create a dramatic and romantic appeal. Also, you must take note of the amount, or lack thereof, of natural light that penetrates the space, as in the end, this will decide the colour scheme of your bathroom. As a general rule of thumb, dark or bright colours should not be used in small bathrooms, with the exception of small accessories.
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