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Bathroom renovations - Bathroom storage ideas for small spaces, how to get value for your money

Updated on June 19, 2013

How to pick the right bathroom storage unit for your bathroom renovation project

If you have ever had the problem of not enough space in your bathroom you'll be happy to know you can fix that problem with minimal effort, if you just put a little thought into your bathroom renovation project before you get started. Its not uncommon to run out of storage areas in your bathroom, after all it is usually the smallest rooms in the house as well as being one of the most worked areas in your house. Just think about what happens in the bathroom, you might only spend 10 to 15 minutes in the bathroom each day, but it needs to be a production period of time. And, you need to store all those products, soaps and gels, shampoo and hair sprays, tooth paste and tooth brushes, moisturizer and lotions, brushes, razors, and the list goes on. Trouble is, with such a small area, so much activity, and so many items to store, keeping your bathroom clean, tidy and most importantly functional can be a bit of an effort if you dont put in a little bit of effort, and a little bit of thought.

The secret to renovating a bathroom is to start with the end in mind

There is absolutely no point in designing and renovating a bathroom and then trying to fit as many personal hygiene products in there as you can. The better way is to try to understand what you need to do and only store products that will help you do that. Remember, you're not trying to wash the dishes, you are try to wash you. To get your self ready to tackle the day you probably don't need 3 different deodorants, and 5 old razor's.

The first step to organizing your bathroom is to sort out all the junk. Do not try to select vanity cupboards before you throw out what you don't need. You must throw out what you don't need first, and then design your bathroom. This is the way to giving yourself the best chance of a winning bathroom renovation.

If you are having difficulty in deciding which items and products to keep then simply as yourself how often you use that item. If its less than once a month, you have to give it some serious though to keep it. Keeping items you don't need just gets in the way.

Make the most of what your bathroom has to offer

The best bathroom makeovers will try to make the most of any available light. You must consider that natural light as an advantage in make the bathroom look good, so don't choose any bathroom storage units that are not going to compliment whatever natural light you have in the room. Obviously when renovating a bathroom put some though into the types of light you will be using, the brightest lights you can find is a good starting point.

Ideally you are using light colors white is best, many bathrooms look great with no color other than white. White tiles on the floor and walls. Make sure all tiles are shiny, highly shined tiles exude a feeling of luxury.

The one are you can experiment with color is the bathroom vanity. Different color in the vanity makes it a focal point, so if your bathroom cupboards are a start contract to the rest of the room make sure the vanity high quality, don't skimp out with a vanity you have built yourself, and definitely don't try to simply change the cupboard doors or paint over the old ones. This might seem like a cheap way to go with your bathroom renovation but it will ultimately degrade the looks and not deliver the value. If you are renovating your bathroom with a profit in mind, i.e. you want to renovate and then sell, then a good rule of thumb is to spend approx 1.5% of the value of the house on the bathroom renovation. Going over this price is overcapitalizing and going under is usually not going to get a good job done. Using this rule of thumb usually increase a houses value at between $3 to $4 for every dollar spend.

For example a property purchased for $200,000 should have a bathroom renovation budget of approximately $3000. That's $200,000 * 5% = $3000. That should raise the value of the house by between $9000 and $12000. A nice equity boost or an extra few dollars in your back pocket should you decide to sell.

Blue and white bathroom
Blue and white bathroom

Bathroom vanity and the importance of color

I mentioned above the vanity color There are two ways to go about this, one is with the entire vanity a stark contract to the rest of the room, the other way, and my preferred way is a white vanity (same color as the rest of the bathroom) but with open shelves. The reason for open shelves is so that you can put different color object on those shelves, such as brightly colored towels, or some other form of decoration. Reason why i like this option so much is that it is easy to change the decorations than it is to change the entire vanity.

Remember, if renovating a small bathroom for profit is your goal, not everyone has the same design tastes. If you liked the black on white look, your potential buyer might not. Also you will find that color schemes usually date quickly, white is always the safest and most profitable value for money bet when determining color schemes for your new bathroom.

The blue and white bathroom in the photo might look OK now, while its new, but it wont appeal to everyone. If you want to renovate your bathroom for a profit you want to make sure that you don't turn buyers away with color schemes that they won't live with.

Wall mounted bathroom vanity
Wall mounted bathroom vanity

Installation considerations for the vanity

This is quite simple but often overlooked. There are 2 key points i like to follow.

First is to keep in mind that a bathroom helps you get clean but in doing so gets dirty itself. The means you want to make is as easy to clean as you can. My preferred method is to incorporate wall mounted vanities, which make it easy to run a mop under them.

The second point is related to the first point. And that is that you must remember that a bathroom is a wet area. Most bathroom storage units are made from wood. When wood gets wet it swells, and will deteriorate very quickly, therefore position your vanity as far away from the shower or batch as you possibly can, not always easy if you're dealing with a small bathroom to begin with. However, as in the first point wall mounted will help here with water on the floor not causing any problems. The other problem with water is from the sink, it is inevitable that water will be spilled on the top of the vanity, for a few extra dollars you can install a stone topped vanity, especially useful if you are renovating to stay in the house and not for profit, as this will usually be a minimum of another $500 more to the renovation budget.


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