Bathroom and Laundry Renovation

When your builder calls you to let you know he has 1.5 days free next week (when he is fully booked for months), and you are due to have your second child in a few weeks, there is only one answer to give – (or at least that was Alice’s thought) – let’s renovate the bathroom.

When we purchased the house, the bathroom was the one room we decided not to renovate as it had been renovated 5 years earlier (we estimate). Whilst the bathroom did not suit our style or colour scheme, we could not justify spending an extra $10k if it did not have to be done. However when we started work we uncovered some shoddy plumbing in the previous renovation and the wall behind the shower had a leaky fitting. After a long period of leaking the framing and lining was rotten and to fix we would have to replace the wall between our bathroom and laundry, including removing a tiled wall, the shower and the toilet. Being half way there for a bathroom renovation we decided to do the whole bathroom and finish the inside of the house off completely.

Alice looked after design (which really just meant shopping). There are two bathroom stores that we used for this project, which we would highly recommend. Elite Bathroomware – we discovered them while on The Block NZ after needing some specific accessories for our bathroom. They have a wide range of products and offer high quality products, not to mention their showroom is stunning, with a great kids play area and coffee machine. Trade Depot – we brought all our our kitchen appliances and tapware from them early on in the year and were impressed with their products and customer service. They are a great product range with affordable options, as well as more high end products. Between these two stores we were able to find everything we needed for our bathroom, all were in stock and ready for us to take away.

Caleb looked after the project management - programming, booking the tradies and budget (aka limiting Alice’s spending). We wanted to get the project done asap - due to baby no. 2 due within a month from when we were starting. All up it took 2 weeks from start to finish with our plan looking like this:

Caleb had a rough budget, but due to the short lead time we arranged with our builder and plumber to work on charge-up rates (pay for the time they spend on the job) rather than getting quotes beforehand. Given we have good relationships with our key trades we can trust they will work efficiently and do a good job for us. The remaining trades we got fixed quotes before starting. The final cost was just under $8,500 for a brand new bathroom with tiled flooring.

The largest cost item is for the trades – a bathroom is labour intensive and required 6 different tradies to work in this small space within our 2 week programme. Having a clear plan is critical to getting a bathroom completed on time.

And for all those people who much prefer inspirational images rather than budgets and programs to look at, here are some of my mood board images for our bathroom design. Images all from Pinterest.