Eight Unique Bathroom Remodel Ideas

bathroom remodeling torontoYour bathroom remodel is not only a chance to update your bathroom and make it more functional; it’s also a chance to add a taste of your own personal style.  These bathroom remodel ideas are off the beaten path, and can help make your bathroom uniquely you.

Life in Black and White

Black and white is a classically elegant yet bold color scheme.  Carry this into the bathroom with black walls, white doors and a few pops of color to keep things lively.  Just make sure that your bathroom is well lit, so that it doesn’t become dreary.

Maintain a Theme

Themed bathrooms add a bit of fun accent to your house.  Try an oriental theme or perhaps a teched-out loo for the technologically advanced among us.

Wall-Mounted Sinks

Wall-hung sinks are secured to the wall with no cabinets or visible plumbing below.  This creates and ultra-modern, sleek feel and also conserves space in smaller bathrooms.

Get Creative with Lighting

Bathroom lighting is typically pretty standard stuff, but a creative flair can add some personality.  Consider using a chandelier over the tub or perhaps pendant lighting over the sink.

Add Some Greenery

If you have the room, adding a few plants can freshen up your bathroom’s looks.  Consider species that do well in humid environments such as African violets, Christmas cactus or even bamboo.

Re-purpose Old Furniture

This is both a creative and an economical bathroom remodel idea.  Try using old furniture pieces, say an antique dresser, as storage space or even as vanities.  This adds a unique bit of personality on a budget.

Go Bold with Picture Windows

Bathrooms typically have small or frosted windows for the sake of privacy.  However, picture windows can provide an open-air feeling without compromising privacy if used in the right setting.  Only consider this option if your bathroom opens to a privacy-fenced backyard, and consider planting a thick hedge, for example bamboo, a few feet away from the window.

Add Color to Your Shower

Bold colors throughout a room can become somewhat overwhelming, but an intense pop of color here and there can add texture and personality without being too loud.  Consider boldly colored tile in the shower or tub area for a bit of extra style.

Are you currently renovating your bathroom, or planning to do so in the near future?  If so, we’d love your feedback.  What unique bathroom remodel ideas have you incorporated in your own bathroom renovation?  Tell us all about it by leaving a comment.

Best of Bathroom Renovation Trends in 2013

bathroom remodeling torontoAny savvy real estate agent will tell you that bathrooms are big business on the housing market these days.  In the past bathrooms weren’t much bigger than a walk-in closet and were limited primarily to the fundamentals.  It seems that bathrooms in new homes are bigger each year, and for good reason.  The bathroom remodeling market is ever expanding with new concepts, and today’s bathroom is packed with amenities.  Here are some of the year’s top trends.

Ditching the Jacuzzi

In the 1990’s and early 2000’s, a hot tub-style Jacuzzi was the picture of modern luxury, and was a must-have for many homeowners.  Jacuzzis still do look nice and can even be nice to use, but if you’ve ever used one, you’re familiar with the not-so-luxurious noise.  Many homeowners are replacing noisy Jacuzzi tubs with quiet, energy-efficient soaking tubs.

His and Hers

Double sinks have long been a staple for couples, but recent bathroom renovation trends have taken the concept of his and hers to a whole new level.  Many couples with the square footage and budget are opting to have both a common two-person soaking tub and separate showers and vanities tailored to gender-specific tastes and needs.

Multimedia

We are living in the digital age, and our powder rooms are no exception.  Many homeowners are installing full entertainment systems in their bathrooms, including TVs, stereos and even gaming systems.  Some prefer to angle TVs so that they can be viewed from the tub, or to go ultra-modern and install flat panel TVs behind mirrors.  Either way a teched-out bathroom is a sure ticket to luxurious relaxation at the end of a long day.

All Steamed Up

Steam showers are perfect for Toronto’s cold climate, and are one of the more popular current bathroom renovation trends.  Imagine coming in from a bitterly cold winter day, summoning up a haven of tropical moisture with a touch of a button in your shower, and sitting down on a bench to enjoy. Finish off with a refreshing rinse, and you’ll step out feeling like you’ve spent a costly hour in a spa all from the comfort of your own home.  Steam showers can be retrofitted to your existing shower, and use very little water.  Sounds like a deal!

Consult with a reputable bathroom remodeling contractor to begin planning your luxury bathroom upgrade.  You’ll be well on your way to an ultramodern, luxurious space that you’ll enjoy with your family for years to come, and your home will stand out from the rest when the time comes to sell.

Planning Your Bathroom Renovation

bathroom remodeling torontoA bathroom renovation is an exciting job.  You’re sure to love your new space, and enjoy it for years to come.  You are probably bursting with ideas for your dream bathroom.  However, before jumping into a bathroom remodel, there are some less exciting (but very important) things to consider.  Careful preparation will keep your bathroom renovation on track and running smoothly.

Set a Budget

If your haven’t already done so, you should get an idea of how much you’re able to spend on your bathroom renovation and set a realistic budget.  This will help guide your decisions about what to include in the remodel.  A qualified contractor knowledgeable in bathroom renovation cost can help you set and maintain a realistic budget; fortunately for home renovation contractors Toronto homeowners have many excellent options.

Work Within Space Constraints

Bathrooms are usually the smallest room in the house, but are expected to fulfill a multitude of uses.  There are many exciting bathroom features currently available on the modern home renovation market, but few bathrooms realistically have room for all of them.

Consider how much space you have available, and also the locations of plumbing hookups and electrical wiring.  Use these aspects as guidelines for your bathroom floor plan, or seek the guidance of a competent home renovation contractor.

Contractor Selection

Some aspects of a bathroom renovation are DIY-friendly, but chances are that you will need the help of a professional for at least part of the job.  Plumbing and electrical work can be damaging or hazardous if done improperly, so it may be best to leave these and other jobs up to professionals.

Select a contractor who is experienced specifically in bathroom renovation, and who is licensed, bonded and insured.  Ask to see a portfolio of prior work, and also don’t be afraid to ask for references.  A reputable professional will offer a portfolio and references without hesitation.

Are you currently involved in your own bathroom remodel?  If so we’d love to hear your own bathroom renovation planning tips.  Tell us all about it in the comments section.

Bathroom Lighting

bathroom remodeling torontoBathroom lighting is an important but often overlooked aspect of any quality bathroom remodel.  It’s very common for bathrooms to be inadequately lit, which makes the space visually smaller and also makes the bathroom harder to use.  Whether you’re interested in a full bathroom renovation or are after a simple touch up, these bathroom lighting tips will help you make the most of your bathroom.

A good bathroom lighting scheme is comprised of a series of layers, in which ample lighting is placed where it is needed, such as in the vanity or shower, and additional lighting enhances the room’s overall ambiance.

Vanity Lighting

Vanity task lighting is a top priority, as it is needed to illuminate the head and face for shaving and grooming.  A very common mistake is to place a single ceiling fixture directly over the mirror.  This casts shadows on the face and hair, making grooming very difficult.

Vertical fixtures mounted on both sides of the mirror are best for casting an even light across the face and hair.  If mounting lighting to the side isn’t an option due to space constraints, lighting can also be placed above the mirror.  Be sure that the light source spans the width of the mirror for nice, even lighting.

It’s also worth noting that fluorescent bulbs may make the skin tone appear washed out or drab.  Soft incandescent lighting may be the best choice for vanity lighting, as it efficiently illuminates the face and hair without inordinately washing out the complexion.

Shower Lighting

Shower lighting is another priority for task lighting.  In small bathrooms with clear shower doors, a dedicated shower fixture may be unnecessary.  However, in larger bathrooms or if frosted or opaque curtains or doors cover the shower, a dedicated fixture may be appropriate.  A recessed light with a glass lens works best here, as it is more durable and will not yellow, unlike plastic.

Ambient Bathroom Lighting

Ambient lighting substitutes for daylight, which bathrooms often lack.  Ambient lighting is typically supplied by a central fixture, which is ordinarily a surface-mounted ceiling light.  However, you can also get creative with options like pendant lighting or even a small chandelier.

Safety Concerns

Keep in mind that water and electricity are a deadly combination, and that the bathroom brings water closer to electricity than any other room in the house.  Be sure to consult with a certified electrician before beginning your bathroom lighting project, and discuss these concerns with your bathroom renovation contractor.

Fixtures that are close to the shower or tub must also be “wet” or “shower-location” rated.  Remember that this rating differs from the “damp” rating necessary for outdoor lighting.

Have you recently embarked on a bathroom lighting project, or are you upgrading your lighting as part of a bathroom remodel?  If so, please share your own bathroom renovation ideas and lighting insights in the comments section.

Four Common Bathroom Renovation Mistakes

bathroom renovation torontoBathroom renovation is very rewarding, and updating your bathroom can create an enjoyable space and increase your home’s value if it’s done correctly.  However, it’s a big job, and can be a daunting task for your average homeowner.

It’s easy to get distracted during the course of bathroom remodeling and to become overwhelmed with unanticipated expenditures and stumbling blocks.  Avoiding these four common bathroom renovation mistakes will keep your bathroom renovation on track to deliver the anticipated results.

Insufficient Budgeting

Realistically speaking, bathroom renovation is expensive.  If you don’t allocate a sufficient budget to the project, you’ll end up knee-deep in unanticipated expenses and likely with a subpar bathroom remodel.  Get a quote from a reputable bathroom renovation contractor, and discuss how to cut costs without compromising quality.  A competent professional will set a realistic budget, and will be honest about which aspects of a remodel are necessary and which are optional.

Cheaping Out on Materials

You should absolutely shop around to find the best possible deal on fixtures and materials for your bathroom renovation, but it’s critical to avoid compromising quality.  Shoddy fixtures, cabinetry, flooring or other materials will only need to be replaced in a few years, so it’s much cheaper to buy the right materials in the first place.

Hiring the Lowest Bidder

You’ll also want to hire a quality contractor, and keep in mind that the lowest bidder is often inexperienced, poorly qualified and likely to cut corners.  Choosing a reputable contractor experienced specifically in bathroom remodeling will save you heartache and repair costs down the road.  Don’t be afraid to ask questions or request customer references.  For bathroom renovations Toronto homeowners have many excellent contractors available; just make sure you hire the right person for the job.

Being Trendy

There are many intriguing bathroom renovation trends on the market currently, and although some of them may be the ticket to your dream powder room, others are impractical and overly expensive.  Additionally, some of these trends will quickly go out of style, meaning that your bathroom will be outdated in only a few short years.

A newly renovated bathroom can be a sanctuary for your family to enjoy for years to come, and increase your home’s appeal on the real estate market in the future.  If you carefully plan your bathroom remodel and avoid these common mistakes, you’ll be well on your way to a successful bathroom renovation.

If you’re currently involved in your own bathroom renovation project, we’d love to hear about the potential stumbling blocks you’ve addressed, and your personal insights on bathroom remodeling.  Please feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Bathroom Space Savers

bathroom renovation torontoYour bathroom is a small space that’s called upon for many purposes.  Because we’re in a packed metropolis, one of the challenges with bathroom renovation Toronto homeowners frequently face is a petite bath.  These bathroom space savers will help you maximize the space you do have for a bathroom that’s both practical and attractive.

Wall-Mounted Sinks

Wall-mounted sinks are common in commercial restrooms, and are now starting to make an appearance in newer bathroom remodels.  They’re supported solely by the wall, and the lack of a console trims off some space.  Wall-mounted sinks are available in many different styles, so you’re sure to find one that fits your décor.

Mirrored Storage

A slimline storage cabinet with a mirror doubles as a vanity and as some much-needed extra storage space.   These take up a minimal amount of space, especially when they’re installed above the sink.

Space-Efficient Showers

It can be challenging to fit a comfortable and functional shower into a small bathroom, but it can be done.  Corner showers with a clipped corner (also known as neoangle) can take up less floor space in petite bathrooms.  Also, using all-glass clear will visually enlarge your space.  Finally, recessed or niche storage within your shower (rather than shelves) allows storage of bath accessories without taking up space.

Creative Towel Racks

Traditional towel racks designed to hold only one towel quickly take up wall space in a smaller bathroom.  Consider using more space efficient racks that store multiple towels.  You can even get creative by repurposing a coat hanger or old magazine rack to cut costs and add flair to your bathroom renovation.

Over-Toilet Storage

Wall space above your toilet can be turned into bonus storage space.  Install a slimline cabinet above your toilet to increase your bathroom storage capacity, which is often limited in small bathrooms.

Downsize Your Toilet

If you’re currently using an old-fashioned commode, you can opt for a newer elongated model to free up some wall space.  Newer toilets also use much less water, which is environmentally friendly and trims down your water bill.

If you’re currently remodeling a space-limited loo, we’d love to hear your own space saving ideas.  Tell us all about them in the comments section.

DIY Bathroom Renovation Ideas

bathroom renovationsIf you’re looking to update your bathroom on a budget, you can save a lot of money by doing at least part of the job on your own, and perhaps prioritizing the most important aspects of your remodel and leaving other features unchanged or simply repairing them.

 Unless you’re a master craftsman, it’s best to keep a DIY bathroom renovation reasonably simple.  Here we suggest a few potential features that can easily be installed by novice or intermediate homeowners.

 DIY Bathroom Flooring

 Installing your own flooring can save a substantial amount of money on your bathroom renovation.  If you wish to remove prior tiling, it will be a simple but labor-intensive job.  Laminate flooring is somewhat easier to remove.

The most simple bathroom flooring option is stained concrete, which lends a simplistic modern appearance.  If you’re looking for something with a bit more personality, laminate flooring is another good DIY option.  Tile floors are somewhat more difficult to install, but are manageable if you’re an intermediate handyman.

 DIY Bathroom Cabinetry

 Cabinetry in un-renovated bathrooms is often care worn and outdated, and many homeowners wish to replace or improve cabinetry in bathroom renovations.

Cabinets are fairly expensive and somewhat difficult to install, so if you’re on a budget you may opt to paint your existing cabinets and perhaps replace the hardware.  This can significantly update their appearance but is relatively easy and inexpensive.

If you have your heart set on new cabinets, you may need to consult a professional to design your new cabinets and determine the proper dimensions.  Fortunately for bathroom renovation Toronto homeowners have many excellent contractors available.

 DIY Bathroom Ceilings

 Popcorn ceilings were previously vey popular, and many un-renovated homes still have them.  Fortunately, popcorn ceilings are fairly easy to remove, although it’s a labor-intensive job.

To remove a popcorn ceiling, use a lawn and garden sprayer to apply a mixture of water and unscented fabric softener to soften the texture, and subsequently scrape it off with a putty knife.  Patch any rough patches with plaster and sand prior to painting.

A Note of Caution

 Although doing some aspects of your bathroom remodel can save money, some aspects of a bathroom renovation are best left to professionals, particularly those concerning plumbing or electrical work.  These mishaps can be dangerous and also do substantial, costly damage to your home.  Use discretion in this, and consult professionals where appropriate.

If you’re currently in the process of renovating your bathroom, we’d love to hear some of your own DIY bathroom renovation ideas.  Tell us all about in the comments section.

 

Bathroom Design Ideas

bathroom renovationsYour bathroom may be the smallest room of your house, but it has an enormous impact on your house’s overall atmosphere.  It’s one of the most frequently visited rooms, and is where you prepare for and wind down from your day.  Therefore, updating your bathroom to fit your own personal taste allows you to enjoy your home more, and also makes it easier to sell.  These bathroom design ideas can help you create a powder room that’s uniquely you.

Open Up Your Shower

Large, open showers are increasingly popular, particularly in master baths.  A roomier shower is more enjoyable and convenient to use, and the open space makes your bathroom appear to be more spacious.  If privacy is a concern, you can install a curtain that can be pulled out from the wall when necessary.

Let in the Light

 Although picture windows are typically a no-no for bathrooms, it’s possible to let in more natural light with windows set a little higher than usual, or with frosted glass. Natural light creates an open, airy appearance that’s modern and refreshing.

Retrofitting windows is a substantial job, and is best left to professional bathroom remodeling contractors.  For bathroom remodeling Toronto-area homeowners have many qualified professionals available.

 Design Modern Tub Surrounds

Porcelain claw foot tubs are a great vintage look, but if you’re after a more modern bath, you can customize your tub’s surround to meet your décor.  Wooden boxes that match the cabinetry are a popular option at the moment.

Draw Inspiration from Art

If you have a favorite piece of art, you can include it as a centerpiece for your bathroom.  Pull colors from the painting out to use as accent colors in your bathroom’s décor, and create an atmosphere that carries an artistic vibe.

Your Own Inspirations

If you’ve recently redecorated your bathroom, we’d love to hear about your own bathroom design ideas in the comments section.  Tell us all about what features you included, and how you integrated your own personal style.

Small Bathroom Remodels

bathroom remodeling torontoIn the past 30 years, bathroom size in new homes has doubled.  Although larger powder rooms are certainly a luxury, if you’re in an older or otherwise space-efficient home, you may be dealing with more limited square footage in your bathrooms.  The following tips for small bathroom remodels can help you make the most of your space.

Keep it Simple

Simplistic designs are popular at the moment, as they create a more modern, streamlined look.  A no-frills bathroom layout and design can update your home’s look and also make better use of a smaller bathroom.

Replace Tubs with Showers

 Bathtubs typically occupy more space than showers, so replacing your tub with a shower stall can free up square footage, creating a more spacious environment.  However, this is a fairly difficult job, so unless you’re a master craftsman, it may be best left to professionals.  For bathroom renovation Toronto homeowners have many well-qualified bathroom remodeling contractors available to assist them in their needs.

 Install Pedestal-Style Sinks

 Although large vanities are convenient, they do not make efficient use of limited square footage.  Consider replacing vanities with smaller, pedestal-style sinks to create a roomier environment.  However, because storage is at a premium in small bathrooms, be sure to select sinks that have storage cabinets underneath.

 Enlarge Your Space Visually

 One of the most important (and easiest) aspects of any small bathroom renovation project is make your space appear to be as large as possible.  Light color schemes tend to make a space seem larger, as does updating lighting to create a brightly lit environment.  Large bathroom mirrors also visually enlarge your bathroom, as do clear glass shower doors.

If you’ve ever remodeled a smaller bathroom, we’d like to hear about your experiences in the comments section.   Tell us what innovations or features helped you to make better use of your space, or how you were able to make your bathroom feel larger and more open.