Bathroom Remodeling: How to Get What You Want

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It’s not a surprise that as homeowners we have strong opinions about our master bathrooms. We start and end our days in there, and they are private spaces that we like specified to our needs. I find that homeowners tend to care more about the master bath than the kitchen, which is more about appliances than how one exists every day. Regardless of their preferences, I work with our clients to create the master bathroom that suits them. Below I list some things to consider when planning a bathroom remodeling project.

Bathroom Remodeling Project Planning

Consider the Existing Space

My first client meeting for bathroom remodeling projects usually takes place in the existing space. We discuss the functionality and design my clients want to achieve and then determine if there is enough space. If not, we examine the adjacent rooms to see if we can steal from them or determine if we have to build an addition. Many homes from the 80s and 90s came with over-sized master bedrooms with sitting areas. These often-wasted spaces can be easily incorporated into a new master bath and closet configuration. Regardless of the situation, cost is always a consideration; I find the most economical way to achieve my clients’ plans.

To achieve our clients’ goals for their master bathroom, we had to steal space from an adjacent dining space and closet.

Tub or No Tub

The answer to this debate is usually about the available space. Many homeowners are moving away from having tubs in the master bathroom, opting for a large custom shower instead. However, I find that people land on one side or the other when it comes to tubs – they are either a tub person or they aren’t. Many bathroom remodeling projects involve removing a large garden tub and adjacent shower, leaving a lot of space to work with. Free-standing tubs take up much less room than the 80s/90s tubs, so I can usually fit one in along with a large walk-in shower if desired.

Closet Space

Again, where master bedroom closets are located comes down to personal preference. I have had some clients who wanted them off the bathroom, others prefer them well into the master bedroom. The decision can also be dictated by the possible reconfiguration of the space. It may be that an expansion of the bathroom requires stealing adjacent closet space and then adding more to a different spot.

Special Use Areas

Understanding how my clients would like their morning and evening routine to flow helps plan space effectively. Do they want a designated makeup area? A bidet? A separated water closet?  Any elements not found in a typical bathroom remodel are best considered up front since they play a large role in the design. For example, a makeup area many need extra outlets, special lighting, unique storage options, etc. Or, another wall and door will need to be built for a water closet. We also plan for creature comforts like heated floors, televisions, towel warmers or sound systems.

Shower Amenities

The shower has become THE spot for luxury in today’s master bathrooms. Steam, music, multiple shower heads, body sprays, frameless glass, floating bench seats, curbless or doorless entries, linear drains, foot niches for shaving – there are so many options to sort through. Here is where working with the Steve Gray Remodeling Team really helps. While I focus on the structural aspects of the design, the designers on my team help my clients wade through all of the amenity choices.

Aging-in Place Considerations

If we are lucky, at some point we get to a certain point where having design elements that allow us to age-in-place become desirable. We always encourage our clients to plan for that future while they have open walls and a clean slate. Adding blocking for future grab bars, widening doorways, designing a curbless shower and installing slip-resistant flooring are all easier to complete during construction than after.

The Steve Gray Renovations Team consists of experts in construction, materials and design. If you are planning a bathroom remodeling project, let us help you plan, budget and build. Send us an email or give us a call at 317.596.0928

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