How to Plan a Low Budget Bathroom Remodel

One of the most expensive home improvement jobs is remodeling a bathroom. As of June 2022, HomeAdvisor estimates that the average cost of remodeling a bathroom is $11,228. A luxury makeover for a large or master bathroom may cost you $28,000 or more.

But even if those figures are out of your price range, you don’t have to keep using your worn-out, outdated bathroom. According to the Daily Infographic, every homeowner uses the restroom 860 times during their lifetime. Therefore, it’s difficult to ignore this area.

There are affordable methods to remodel a bathroom. According to This Old House, there’s a lot that homeowners can do with less than $1,000 to remodel bathrooms. If your bathroom decor isn’t cutting it anymore, use the following ways to plan for your stylish bathroom makeover at a reasonable cost.

9 Ways to Plan a Low-Budget Bathroom Remodel

You don’t have to demolish the bathroom to brighten it up completely. There are several inexpensive ways to accomplish this. These bathroom remodeling ideas can help you save money while making a big impact.

1.Who Will Carry Out the Work?

Choosing the person who will perform the labor must come first. Are you planning to DIY, hire specialists for specific tasks, or hire a general contractor to oversee the entire project?


When you hire a general contractor, they oversee every facet of the project, keeping things on track and perhaps recruiting subcontractors to undertake particular tasks. They occasionally also offer design services. However, you must factor in labor costs if you employ subcontractors.


You can significantly reduce your labor costs by doing some or all of the work yourself. If you are exceptionally handy, you might be able to manage the majority of a small to medium-bathroom redesign. Even if you lack the necessary installation skills, you can still significantly reduce your costs by handling the tear-out portion of your refurbishment yourself.

DIY projects do, however, have a price tag. You might need to purchase or rent the same tools, machinery, and materials a contractor would have.

2.What’s the Scope?

Next, you’ll need to decide how thorough your redesign will be. Do you intend to renovate your master bathroom suite entirely, or are you only giving your half-bathroom a little facelift? The size and distribution of your budget will depend on the extent of your remodel.

Consider whether or not expensive adjustments will be required, such as water heater installation and AC repair or demolishing a wall and expanding your bathroom into a different room. Fixate your plans early so that you can calculate your budget with precision.

3. Establish a Budget and Schedule for Remodeling Your Bathroom

Even while a DIY bathroom redesign will save you a lot of money, you’ll usually wind up spending more than anticipated. A sound strategy is crucial. Consider your budget for the bathroom redesign, goals, and available funds. According to HGTV, you should reserve at least 30% of your initial budget as a cushion.

Set the projects that will have the most impact before those that will break the bank as priorities. To ensure that your timetable, budget, and overall design are manageable, think about working with an interior designer or architect.

4. Compare Prices for Materials and Labor

Look around for the best deal, whether you’re retiling your floor yourself or hiring a contractor. Before beginning your renovation, compare material prices from several sources and obtain three to four contractor estimates. To find inexpensive bathroom remodeling supplies:

  • Get online prices from department stores.
  • Shop outlets, thrift stores, and bargain stores for the best deals.
  • Visit the Habitat for Humanity ReStore in your area.
  • Try internet directories like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace.

5. Consider Using Bathroom Flooring That’s Simple to Install

Want to modernize the flooring in your bathroom without tiling it? Consider installing laminate, peel-and-stick tile, vinyl plank flooring, or engineered wood flooring. Each one is less expensive than tile and is simple to install.

Fabricated Wood

Hard wood floors are not suitable for bathrooms, especially since they are not waterproof. You can get engineered wood from a flooring store if you want your bathroom’s wood floors to have an authentic feel. You can use both gorilla glue and a nail gun to install it, and it is less prone to moisture. Additionally, according to The Spruce, it will help you stay within your budget with an average price range of $4 to $7 per square foot.

Peel and Stick Ceramic

A tile floor aesthetic appeal at a fraction of the cost? Sold! According to Flooring Clarity, peel-and-stick tile can be purchased for as little as 20 cents per square foot. Additionally, the short installation time of this bathroom flooring will save you several hours of labor. It’s easier to remove than conventional tile if you wish to change the pattern in the future.

Laminate Floor Covering

Laminate flooring pops into place, unlike tile. Before installing it, measure the size of your bathroom so you can quickly determine how many pieces to purchase. It will also be easy on your wallet, with pricing from $2 to $3 per square foot, according to Home Depot.

6. Work Within the Constraints of Your Current Plumbing Setup

When remodeling a bathroom, moving the major plumbing or adding new water pipes will cost more than you anticipated. So, avoid moving your water supply and drainage unless it is necessary. Try more affordable alternatives before replacing your current shower, bathtub, sink, and toilet.

You can do the following low-cost bathroom tasks with the assistance of plumbers:

    • Instead of replacing the toilet wholly, replace the seat and lid.
    • Install a new system in your shower.
    • Replace your tiled shower with one that is prefabricated.
    • Replace the shower curtain you currently have or install a new glass door.

7. Research Different Bathroom Wall Options

You don’t have to tile your bathroom walls, either. The most popular tile substitute is paint, but you can choose fiberglass or acrylic panels. These choices are also simpler to install and less expensive.


While painting initially seems dull, you may utilize it to give your bathroom a unique look. For an additional splash of color, consider painting an accent wall or installing wainscoting. Additionally, according to the Tribble Painting company, painting your complete bathroom only costs between $1,000 and $2,000 in total.


Fiberglass adds a touch of sleekness to your bathroom and is frequently used for shower inserts and the wall above your bathtub. Choose from various patterns, including marble, brick, and solid colors. And with an average price range of $611 to $811, according to Homewyse, you can easily avoid going over budget.

Acrylic Panels

Acrylic panels are utilized frequently in showers, as are fiberglass panels. Each panel is 100% waterproof, and you can use simple woodworking equipment to install them. Homewyse advises you to budget between $1,100 and $1,360 if you utilize acrylic panels in your bathroom.

8. Recycle Old Components

One of the best ways to reduce labor costs is to perform the work yourself. But there are numerous methods to cut costs when it comes to materials. One of the most efficient strategies is refurbishing the things you already own rather than purchasing new ones.

With a bit of labor, you can make nearly every item in a bathroom look different, including:

Bathtubs and Shower

The most cost-effective option is to purchase your bath or shower handles, spout, and showerhead as a set. According to Home Depot, these sets, also known as trim kits, can cost as little as $100 to $200 each.

If the handles are still in good condition, preserving them and replacing the showerhead might be less expensive. A good showerhead significantly influences a satisfying shower more than attractive handles. Numerous high-quality showerheads are around $50.

Shower Enclosures

If you clean the tile and grout, a tiled shower enclosure might appear brand new. However, some patching may be necessary for worn parts of the grout. You can dye white grout a darker hue to give it a more modern appearance. You can repair damaged or broken areas on shower walls made of fiberglass or acrylic.


Given that it is much smaller, a stone countertop for your vanity will be less expensive than stone counters for your kitchen. However, there are less expensive alternatives.

The least expensive countertop options, according to HGTV, include laminate and ceramic or glass tiles. Although the price of engineered stone and solid-surface counters is higher, they are still less expensive than granite or marble.

There are various ways to buy stone for less if you genuinely adore the way it looks:

      • Use remnants. Find out if your local suppliers have any stone leftover from a larger project. You don’t need a lot of these scraps to build a vanity top, and they are frequently less expensive than an entire slab. You can also ask your contractor about leftovers if you’re working with them.
      • Use prefab. Choose a prefabricated slab to save money if your vanity is a typical size and form. It costs less money than having an item customized. However, it constricts your possibilities for edge and color details.
      • Use quartz. More and more people are choosing quartz countertops because they are versatile, sturdy, long-lasting, and low-maintenance. With a simple installation procedure, the distinctive colors and eye-catching embellishments add to the beauty of a home with ease. Hire a quartz countertop installer to acquire the ideal quartz countertop for your room.
      • Pick a more affordable grade. Slabs of natural stone are available in various grades. A slab with more defects is less expensive, and if the problems are in the center, where the sinkhole would be, they won’t even be visible.
      • Maintain a simple edge. With a simple beveled or bull-nose edge, stone and prefabricated countertop materials are the least expensive. You can save money by selecting these edge finishes over a sophisticated ogee or waterfall edge.


A new faucet can completely transform the appearance of a sink. You can use a porcelain repair kit or a two-part surface repair epoxy to patch damaged porcelain.


Replace the toilet seat and lid for $30 or less to give your toilet a fresh look rather than spending $100 or more on a new one. Choose a wooden toilet seat or one that closes softly to add a sense of beauty.


Painting the existing cabinets will help you save hundreds of dollars. Replace the doors if they are too damaged, but keep the cabinet boxes. That usually costs $30 to $100 per door, not including labor, according to HomeAdvisor.

9. Making Over Your Bathroom Vanity

By changing your vanity, you can quickly brighten up your bathroom. There are numerous approaches to completing this renovation, from picking new countertops to repainting the wood.

Here are some low-cost methods for updating your bathroom vanity:

      • Swap out the hardware. Replace the hardware on your vanity when you replace the doorknobs in your bathroom. Ensure that their finishes and colors match.
      • Paint it. If you want to modify the color of your vanity, use semi-gloss latex paint. Cover the door, drawers, and wood surrounding the mirror before repainting it. Apply a shiny topcoat after you’re done.
      • Replace the counter. Even though peel-and-stick alternatives can achieve the same effect, marble surfaces are not inexpensive. The installation is also straightforward and weatherproof.
      • Replace the light fixture. Without a stylish light fixture, no vanity is complete. Change the lights above your bathroom vanity instead of remodeling the entire thing.

Over To You

It is not necessary to spend a small fortune on a bathroom remodel. There’s no denying that some improvements, like a fully tiled walk-in shower or increasing the master bathroom’s square footage, can cost upwards of tens of thousands of dollars. On the other hand, you may transform your bathroom into an opulent refuge at a lot smaller price with careful planning and a little imagination.

A bathroom update or addition is another home improvement project that raises the value of your house. The 2021 Cost vs. Value Report from trade journal Remodeling magazine estimates that homeowners who remodel their bathrooms typically recoup between 55% and 60% of the cost when they sell the house. And you can increase that proportion even further if you can increase the resale value while spending less money.