When considering a bathroom or en suite refurbishment project, one of the first questions asked will be ‘how much does it cost’?
As you can imagine, coming to a definite answer for this question is not easy. There are many different aspects that all have a bearing on the final cost. Each bathroom will be specific to each individual in terms of space, requirements, desired overall look, budget and works required to achieve this. A bathroom for many will be a room that is used solely as a place to bathe and wash, but for others it will be a space to relax in and shut the world out for a period of time, so it’s important that you achieve the right ambience from your surroundings and product choice. A bathroom project can be a major outlay, but get it right and it will last for years. The following will give you a guide to what you need to consider before starting your project, as well as possible costs (as there are many to consider).
The design and installation of a bathroom generally fall into one of three categories:
1. Supply only
2. Supply and dry fit
3. Supply and install
Each of these areas will be discussed later in the article where you can garner a full understanding of each.
Firstly, we will look at your ‘needs and wants’ from your new bathroom or en suite…
1. Choosing The Perfect Bath
Choosing the right bath is a big decision. Do you go for a standard size bath? A large one? A bath with an overhead shower? Or have you always wanted a Jacuzzi bath?
A good quality standard size bath can start at £300, whereas a Jacuzzi bath will start at the £2000 mark.
2. Picking A Shower To Fit Your Space
For many, this is the biggest decision of them all. With a couple of options available to you, would you rather a walk-in shower or an enclosed shower?
A walk-in shower will allow you to do precisely that; walk in. They’re perfect for larger bathrooms, but if space is tight, you may want to consider an enclosed shower cubicle.
A walk-in shower screen will start around £300 depending on the size of the glass. A shower enclosure door and side panel could start from £600 depending on the size required. The thickness of the glass and design will all have a bearing on the total cost. Don’t forget you will also need a shower tray and waste to suit.
3. Shower Valve
Here we start to get slightly more technical. A shower valve, for those that don’t know, is essentially the shower’s operating system (the power adjustment and the temperature settings). These aren’t all built equally, and some are much better than others.
The current set up of your bathroom infrastructure could have a huge impact on the type of shower valve that you install. It depends on your water pressure, boiler, how many water outlets you will need, and what type of shower you are going to install (electric, digital, integral).
A basic Thermostatic exposed shower valve with a shower kit can start at £300. A basic Digital shower can start at £750.
4. Buying Bathroom Furniture & Storage
Most homes to do not have storage in the bathroom and this can be one of the most important considerations when planning a refurbishment.
There are two types of furniture are available for bathrooms…
- Fitted furniture – aesthetically, this option looks great, and when fitted correctly, will last a long time. It can provide a great storage solution as well as hiding unsightly pipework.
- Wall hung furniture – in a tight space, wall-hung furniture can give the feel of having more room as nothing sits on the ground, giving a larger footprint to the space.
Drawers and cupboards are both available for these two styles which can provide great storage, but bear in mind that drawer units will always be a more expensive option.
Door style and finish will be a consideration. Contemporary and traditional styles are options, as well as MFC, foil wrap and painted timber. These finishes will also dictate the cost of the units.
A standard Basin and WC unit will cost around £750 but this will depend on the overall quality of the unit, style, material and size of the units.
A standard wall-hung basin single drawer unit starts at around £400.
Pricing Of Bathroom Worktops & Material
If you are having fitted furniture then you will need to decide what type of worktop you want. This will be determined by look and budget as the costs will vary. The material options are listed below…
- Solid Surface
A laminate worktop surface will be the least expensive due to the material and labour. It can be easily cut on site which means it’s a popular choice for installers. Some manufacturers will offer the option of price per length required generally from £10 per 100mm.
Others will only offer set lengths of 3000mm costing around £130 per length. This is ideal if you have long runs of furniture to cover but can be very wasteful for a standard 1200mm run of furniture which is typically found in a bathroom.
Again, a solid surface worktop can be cut on site but the initial cost of the product is higher, starting from £25 per 100mm.
Quartz, Granite and Corian
Quartz, Granite and Corian are the most expensive materials as they require templating and fitting by specialists which adds to the cost. Cost will vary depending on finished edges, cut outs, and cut back fabrications required. The company designing your bathroom will submit a plan to their supplier for a quotation. If you are dealing directly with a stone supplier they will supply a quotation for this.
There are many different styles, sizes and quality of sanitaryware on the market today with a range of different price points. The brands which offer design-led styles will command a higher price tag.
A standard basin and pedestal, close-coupled WC and seat will be around the £650 mark where as a higher-end option can start from £1500.
Buying The Best Bathroom Taps
Tap styles and ease of use are personal to each individual. Quality and warranty should play an important part in your choice as inferior quality taps are rife on the market, which is reflected in the price.
A good quality basin tap with a good warranty (10 years plus) will start from £150 depending on the style and brand.
Mirrors Are A Must
A large, well-lit mirror is a must for any bathroom. With a range of options, you’ll need to decide between a plain mirror, an illuminated mirror, charging points within the mirror, a demister pad, sensor or touch switches for lights or a mirror cabinet for more storage. Some manufacturers even offer Bluetooth connectivity within their mirrors. As with everything, the higher the specification, the higher the cost.
An illuminated mirror depending on size and spec can start at £200, whereas an illuminated cabinet can start from £450.
Should You Tile The Whole Bathroom?
How much of the room are you considering to have tiled? You can have a fully tiled or half-tiled room, or you can opt to only have tiling where needed, such as a basin splashback and shower enclosure. Or perhaps you are considering a wet room.
Ceramic, porcelain and marble tiles are all available. The size of your chosen tiles will also come into the cost. The cost of tiles can vary a lot depending on the look you want to achieve and material you choose. Porcelain tiles will be more expensive and will incur more cost to fit as they are more difficult to cut, and therefore more labour intensive.
How Much Does It Cost To Tile A Bathroom?
The average size of tiles for bathrooms (whether ceramic or porcelain) is a 600x300mm. An average cost for ceramic tiles will be around £20 – £30m2. For porcelain, the price point will be nearer £35m2 and upwards. Marble will cost considerably more, especially if choosing a larger format tile.
Pinterest is a great platform to help you visualise different looks and styles of tiles.
Types Of Bathroom Flooring
Getting the flooring just right can add a touch of class to your bathroom interior. Types of flooring include ceramic, porcelain, Karndean, vinyl and safety flooring. At this point you might want to consider whether you would like to install underfloor heating. This will obviously hike the price (and the work involved), but it provides a touch of luxury and keeps your feet warm on those cold winter days.
Whatever your preferred choice of flooring, the biggest factor when it comes to price is the actual size of your floor.
What Lighting Options Do You Have For Your Bathroom?
Lighting can have an impact on your bathroom and is not always an area that is properly thought through. A centre light may be all that you want, but there is a range of different options available to you. Ceiling down-lights are a popular option for modern styles, and ambient lighting under units is brilliant for creating ambience and having a relaxed lighting option for any bathroom visits in the middle of the night.
More focused, task lighting can also be an important aspect to consider. When carrying out those close-to-the-mirror beauty tasks, you might want an illuminated mirror or bright lights either side of the mirror.
It is important to know that all lighting must be suitable for bathroom uses with IP rated products for different areas in the bathroom. To replace a suitable bathroom centre light can cost as little as £90. Downlights basing on an average of 4 for the average size bathroom will start from around £120 plus the associated electrics required.
Now that you have an idea of what you want in your bathroom, you now need to decide what type of installation is right for you. The following guide will give you more information on the options available to you.
Option 1: Supply of product only.
Option 2: A part refurbishment with product & installation (for example, just replacing the bath, sanitaryware and taps).
Option 3: Replacing a bath with a shower.
Option 4: Standard replacement of existing bathroom including bath, sanitaryware, taps, tiling and installation.
Option 5: Complete refurbishment with all product & installation, tiling, flooring, electrics and plastering.
Option 6: Complete redesign and installation.
Option 7: Forming a complete new bathroom or en suite.
Option 8: Supply & ‘dry fit’.
Taking each of these options as listed above we can look at each one in a little more depth. It is difficult to give an exact cost as cost in each case will be governed by the initial cost of chosen product and the individual works required to achieve the desired result.
How To Find The Right Bathroom Fitter
You may have done your own research into the product you want and are simply looking to carry out (or source) the fitting of the interior yourself. Installation prices will vary as a larger company may charge around £4800 labour only based on a 10-day fit whereas a one-man-band may charge around £2000. Using a one-man-band will always be the cheapest option as they have smaller overheads than a larger company. But, be warned, there can be drawbacks and downsides to this option, such as what happens if things went wrong…
The cost of a supply only bathroom will depend on your choice of product, of which can differ considerably.
For a good quality product range (bath, panel, basin & unit, WC & taps, you could be looking at a cost of around £1500. The higher the specification of the products, the higher the cost will be.
Part Refurbishment With Product & Installation
For a part refurbishment and installation (replacing the existing bath, for example) sanitaryware and taps is not always a straightforward option. Removing the existing bath is not always easy as the tiles may be disturbed (and therefore require replacing). The flooring may be required to be replaced if the new product is not the same footprint as the existing bath.
A replacement bathroom, depending on size, product choice and work to be carried out, could start from £3500.
Prices will vary from company to company depending on the brands and ranges of product they offer and installation costs.
With any quote that includes installation, it’s important to clarify what work is included, as some quotations will not include removal of all rubbish.
Supply & ‘Dry Fit’ Bathrooms
A ‘Dry Fit’ is a term used in the kitchen and bathroom trade. It essentially means the installation of a bathroom into a space that is already set up with electricity and plumbing in the right place for the new bathroom. From a fitting and installation point of view, it is a lot easier to install an interior into a space like this that is ready to go, rather than ripping out an old interior and working on setting up a completely new space.
Generally, a dry fit can be carried out if you are having an extension or a house built and your builder can carry out all of the works necessary to get feeds and wastes in place ready for the product to be fitted.
Your builder will have carried out all of the preparation works such as plumbing, ceilings, plastering, preparation of suitable flooring for your required floor covering and electric feeds. If you have a bathroom company that has designed your bathroom and supplied the products and they are to carry out the fitting of your bathroom they should supply plans, and, in a lot of cases, liaise with the builder as to the positioning of the product for the required feeds and wastes and positioning of any required electrics. If wastes and feeds are in the wrong places, then your cost can go up to rectify these (whether the fault be with the builder or the company installing your bathroom). Costs can start around £2400 but this will increase if there is tiling and flooring to be fitted.
How To Replace A Bath With A Shower
Removing an existing bath and replacing it with a shower enclosure will require some re-tiling or waterproof wall boarding to the new shower area, as well as the supply and fitting of a shower valve. Costs can vary depending on the type of shower you choose to replace the bath. Again, quality of enclosure, depth of glass and amount of framework will all have a bearing on the cost.
The cost of replacing a bath with a shower ranges from £4000 – £5000 upwards. If you have an existing shower valve that doesn’t need replacing, then the cost can be reduced.
Standard Replacement Of Existing Bathroom
A standard bathroom replacement will generally include sanitaryware, bath, taps, shower over bath, plastering, part tiling & flooring. Costs will be dependant of final product choice and works required to achieve this but can range between £8000 – £9000. Addition of electrics and ceiling work can add to this cost.
How Much Is A Complete Bathroom Installation?
A complete installation involves completely gutting the old bathroom and starting again. This is one of the more expensive options, but it also means that you can make a space that’s exactly how you want it.
Supply of product, plumbing, plastering, boarding of walls, tiling, flooring, ceiling works, lighting and other electrical work will all need to be carried out. Many companies will offer this complete package with a project manager overseeing each stage of the project. Costs can range from £11,000 to £14,000. The size of the room will have a bearing on this with regard to tile & flooring quantities and labour, product choice and the installation work required to achieve this.
How Much Is A Complete Bathroom Redesign?
A complete redesign may often require a new layout of your bathroom products compared to the existing positions of WC, basin, bath/shower. This can, in many cases, be possible and fairly straight forward but in some cases more work is required to achieve this. For instance, moving the WC because of the position of the soil pipe would be a typical undertaking. Stud work or boxing may have to be constructed to hide exposed pipework, and storage may be an important factor in any of these options (which can also hide pipework).
Prices can start from £12000 (again depending on chosen products, size of room and required installation works).
Creating A Completely New Room
Creating an en suite in a bedroom or turning a bedroom into a bathroom will require additional plumbing works. Water feeds will be required to run to the room and waste runs will need to be established. The position of the existing soil pipe will determine how easy or not it will be to achieve this.
In some cases it is not possible to run a conventional WC soil pipe to the existing pipe and may require what is known as a Saniflo system. A Saniflo system enables waste from the shower, bath, basin and WC to be pumped to the man soil stack, allowing you another solution to the problem.
This is not always the desired option as there is always some element of noise attached to a pump. The cost of these systems will vary depending on the runs required, the length of runs and how many waste outlets there are to be run. It is difficult to put a cost on this type of installation as the work required can differ hugely and be very labour intensive.
Hopefully, this guide will have given you an insight into potential costs for your bathroom project and areas that will need to be looked into to get what is right for you in terms of design, product and installation service before you even set foot into a showroom.
A good bathroom company can guide you through all of the aspects of the design, product choices and installation options to help you achieve the bathroom of your dreams.
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