7 Facts You Didn’t Know About Bathroom Conversions

Bathroom conversions completely transform one of the most used rooms in your house. Envision converting a half bath into a full bath, turning an ordinary tub into a luxury shower, or creating a spa-like retreat at home. The possibilities for bathroom conversions are boundless.

A thoughtfully designed bathroom enhances the value of your home, improves the space’s functionality, and makes daily routines more enjoyable. However, misconceptions about bathroom conversions persist. Homeowners who move forward with a bathroom conversion without considering some of those misconceptions may come to regret some of their design choices.

So, before you start looking at tile and interviewing contractors, consider these seven facts you didn’t know about bathroom conversions. With this information, you’ll be able to make smarter decisions about materials, design, and budget.

Labor Is the Most Expensive Part

And you thought splurging on a steam shower or that gorgeous hand-painted tile was going to be the costliest aspect of your bathroom conversion budget! In fact, labor costs often end up being the most expensive part of the project.

Although materials such as tiles and fixtures can contribute to the cost, hiring skilled professionals to execute the work typically consumes a larger portion of your budget. This holds especially true if you plan substantial alterations to your bathroom’s layout or plumbing.

Moving the sink or shower from one side of the room to the other or installing heat under the floor are major undertakings. These tasks may require ripping up walls, building additional support under the floor, or removing and replacing the entire subfloor, which substantially increase the cost of a bathroom conversion. That isn’t to say you can’t make these changes—you’ll just need to plan your budget carefully to accommodate the significantly increased cost.

Storage Is More Important Than You Think

While storage may not be the most glamorous aspect of a bathroom conversion, it is indispensable for maintaining an organized and clutter-free space. As you chart out your conversion plans, remember to consider storage solutions such as built-in shelves, cabinets, or even concealed storage behind mirrors or under the bathroom vanity. Failing to include sufficient storage can be a major regret for homeowners later down the line.

Lighting Is More Than an Overhead Fixture

The right lighting can revolutionize the appearance and ambiance of a bathroom. Natural light is always desirable, but if your bathroom lacks windows, invest in high-quality lighting fixtures that offer ample brightness and warmth. Dimmers can also help cultivate a soothing atmosphere for those indulgent, long bubble baths.

And don’t limit lighting to one bright overhead fixture. Including makeup lights, under-cabinet lights, or gentle recessed lighting can transform a bright, clinic-like bathroom into a relaxing retreat.

Towels Dry More Quickly on Rods Than Hooks

Tired of damp towels? Consider replacing traditional towel hooks with towel rods. Towel rods promote better air circulation, facilitating faster drying of your towels and reducing the chance of mildew or mold growth.

You also want to think carefully about the placement of towel rods. Some typical spots include outside of shower doors, on walls, on the back of the bathroom door, or along the wall beneath a window. You also might take the conversion as an opportunity to add a towel warmer to enhance the spa-like or luxury feel of your new bathroom.

Make sure to include rods of different lengths and sizes to accommodate bath towels, hand towels, and washcloths near where they’re most beneficial. The rods should be long enough to allow the towels to hang with fewer folds to encourage complete drying.

Sometimes, Gutting It Is Worth It

In certain instances, achieving the bathroom of your dreams might necessitate starting from scratch. Although it may seem intimidating and potentially costly, stripping your bathroom down to the studs opens up the opportunity to customize every facet of your new space.

This decision is especially important in older homes, as your bathroom may have undergone a number of prior renovations—not all of them performed professionally. It’s not unusual to discover that previous workers cut a joist in an upstairs bathroom to accommodate plumbing, weakening the support for a tub.

Gutting an older bathroom can also reveal past water damage from bad caulk or crumbling grout, insect damage, and poor insulation. A bathroom conversion provides a chance to bring your bathroom up to modern standards, improve its energy efficiency, and ensure its structural integrity.

Tub-to-Shower Conversions Can Boost Home Value

You may have heard that removing a bathtub will negatively impact your home’s value. While that may have been true in the past, prospective homebuyers now appreciate the benefits of a large shower. Tub-to-shower conversions also create the feeling of more space and give you opportunities to include amenities such as dual niches, benches, and larger, higher showerheads.

As a practical matter, if you don’t use your bathtub very much, a tub-to-shower conversion can make your bathroom more convenient and water efficient, saving you on your water bill. A tub-to-shower conversion lends a modern and spacious feel to your bathroom and enhances the value of your home. Many individuals prefer showers over baths for their daily routines, making this type of conversion a sought-after feature.

Planning for Aging in Place Is Worth Your While

Even if you’re not there yet, planning for aging in place can spare you time and money in the future. Simple modifications, such as installing grab bars or a walk-in shower, can make your bathroom safer and more user-friendly as you age.

Choose Your Contractor Carefully

Professionals should handle major bathroom renovations or remodels. That’s probably not one of the things you didn’t know about bathroom conversions, but knowing how to find the right fit is a different story. Gather recommendations (and precautionary tales) from trusted family and friends, and take the time to get multiple quotes, check references, and confirm licensure and insurance.

Communication is important, too; if you find a qualified contractor, but you just don’t feel comfortable with their communication style, you will have a hard time working with them. For bathroom conversions in Winston-Salem, NC, contact Reece Builders. We’re confident you’ll hear glowing reviews from our references and appreciate our experience and clarity when we discuss your options. If you’re in the Winston-Salem area, give Reece Builders a call today!

7 Facts You Didn’t Know About Bathroom Conversions