King George V once said, “Always go to the bathroom when you have the chance.” When it comes to living space, people, even kings, spend a lot of time in the bathroom. Not counting baths or showers, one survey estimates that each person will spend the equivalent of 92 days in the bathroom throughout the course of their life.
Because of the amount of time spent there, many potential home buyers put a lot of emphasis on the bathrooms. They want to know how many there are, how big they are, and what condition they’re in. Along with kitchen remodel, bathroom remodel is one of the most popular alterations people make to their home.
Though recoup rates typically run about 50-75% (a $10,000 adds $5,000 – $7,500), a bathroom remodel can help provide the final push across the finish line towards the sale of your house. Here are four ways remodeling your bathroom can increase the value of your home:
Upgrading the Vanity
Though it’s one of the more expensive options, upgrading your bathroom’s vanity can provide the biggest return on investment. A full vanity update should include countertops, faucets, and sinks. Most buyers are looking for a nice countertop finish (think marble or granite rather than tile or laminate) that sits at a comfortable height. You could also put in new cabinets to match the vanity, which we will touch on later.
A transformative, relatively cost-effective bathroom remodeling project is putting in new floors. New floors can completely change the look and feel of the bathroom and offer a more modern appearance. Some options for materials are ceramic, porcelain or vinyl. The nice thing about these materials is that they can be customized to look like wood or stone, while still being waterproof and smooth. For an added high-end touch in colder climates, you could even install radiant-heat mats underneath the floors to wow prospective buyers.
Upgrading/Replacing Shower and Tub
There are a few different ways you could handle this project. You could simply replace the fixtures, (shower heads, faucets, tub, shower door and walls) matching them to any previous upgrades you’ve performed or are planning to. Or, as long as you’re not removing the only bathtub in the house, you could take out the tub entirely and use that space for a walk-in shower. Many expected home buyers find that they shower every day, so a spacious, elegant and comfortable shower is higher on their priority list than a whirlpool tub that they might use a few times a year. Your budget and/or personal preference can be your guide here.
It would be wise to look at your bathroom cabinets with a critical eye. Depending on when you bought or built your house, the look and style of your bathroom cabinets may be outdated. Home buyers are typically looking for clean, modern designs when it comes to cabinets, and with a few different materials to choose from (particle board, medium density fiberboard, plywood, solid wood) you have several ways to make your cabinets more appealing. This project could also go hand-in-hand with upgrading your vanity, and you could match the handles on your drawers and cupboards to the faucets or the countertops.
Because we spend an inordinate amount of time in the bathroom, and it’s something our guests often see, soon-to-be home buyers place a lot of importance on the look and feel of a house’s bathrooms. This means that by remodeling your bathroom, you can increase the value of your home. The areas you should focus on are the vanity, the cabinets, the flooring, the shower and the tub. With those improvements, you can flip your house at a price you can afford!