If you're not sure you can afford an entirely new bathroom, there are ways to give your existing one a fresh new look on a budget and without replacing the sanitary ware (the toilet, bath, sink and shower). First, you'll need to do a thorough clean. If the grouting is mouldy, try using a specialist cleaning product, available from supermarkets and DIY stores. If that doesn't work, buy an anti-mould grout-reviving pen, which you can get in black or white depending on the colour of your grouting. If you choose to redo the grouting altogether, use a sealer that will help prevent staining and mould growth in the future. To help prevent the mould coming back, try to leave the bathroom window open after showering or, if there isn't a window, install an extractor fan and leave the door open when you leave the room. If you are lucky enough to have a cast-iron bath but the ceramic covering has started to crack, consider buying a resurfacing kit or hiring someone to do a professional job for you, rather than replacing it. When you come to sell your home, buyers tend to rate period features.
Due to frequent use and the resulting wear and tear, bathrooms tend to start breaking down after about 20 years, whether that's a perpetually leaky faucet or crumbling grout or chipping tiles (or all three). On average, bathroom remodels cost $16,724, so your design should be both intentional and strategic in order to secure a high return on investment, as well as to create a functional space. That said, bathrooms are typically small, enclosed rooms so they are also a place in your home where you can play around a little bit with color and texture. Either way, determine how to make the most of your space. We've covered everything from small bathroom ideas that focus on function to making the most of your budget by changing small things like paint color or upgrading in phases.
There are many options for bathroom flooring so first consider our tips for selecting a material for your floors, which will help you choose what works best for your space. In general, larger floor tiles and patterns are subtle and better for small bathrooms. If you put ceramic tile on the floor look for a grade of 1 or 2, a water absorption rating of less than 7% and a coefficient of friction above .60, which are slip resistant and stand up to water. You'll also want a more impervious tile for the floor because of exposure to water. Vinyl feels better on bare feet than ceramic tile and it's one of the more popular flooring choices due to it being inexpensive and practical (safe, easy to install and maintain). One feature that buyers are looking for in today's market is radiant heated flooring, which not only ensures warm feet in the colder months but also makes the floor dry faster, reducing the chance of slips or falls. It's also energy efficient.
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