The average homeowner spends about £3,000 on a new bath/shower room, but it doesn't have to cost this much.
There are styles and designs to suit all budgets and at this time of the year, keep an eye out for a bathroom bargain in the sales.
In any modernisation project, there are certain steps and precautions you should take, such as ensuring any tradesmen you employ have the correct qualifications.
Renovating a bath or shower room does involve careful budgeting, planning and research and you may also need to deal with a few issues along the way.
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Firstly, it's essential to work out your budget before you start your research as it is very easy to get carried away once you start looking at all those fabulous frameless shower enclosures and designer tiles.
Make a list of everything you want from your new bath or shower room.
For example, are you replacing your bathroom "like for like" and placing the new fittings in the same position, or do you want a complete change in layout, adding a shower or bidet?
This will cost you more as you are likely to incur extra plumbing and charges for new drainage.
Are you replacing the floor? Will you need to redecorate the bathroom? Will you need to move anything such as a radiator or a window?
Once you have carried out your research, then you can start to find a bath or shower supplier and installer.
Depending on your requirements and budget, you may want to use a specialist bathroom supplier which will also carry out the full installation and any other related building and plumbing works, but check to make sure they are members of the KBSA. Visit:
Many DIY stores that supply bathrooms will also fit the bath or shower room for you, or you can buy the bathroom and get a plumber or builder to install it.
Don't forget to get a signed contract from whoever you choose to undertake the work and never pay for all the costs up front – you should normally only be asked to pay a deposit.
Once you have chosen your bathroom supplier/fitter, you need to draw up a plan. Many bath and shower room suppliers and outlets, whether they are DIY stores or specialist retailers, have free planning services.
Armed with your plan and budget, you can choose which fittings and fixtures you would like in your bathroom.
Any work that has been carried out relating to your new bathroom, whether this is on drains, windows, electrical or major structural work, may need building regulations.
If you don't get the right certificates from your tradesmen, then it's likely that you will have difficulty selling your home later on and you could be in breach of the local authority rules and regulations.
Check to make sure plumbers are a member of APHC (www.aphc.co.uk) or CIPHE (www.ciphe.org.uk).
Finally, once the work has been finished to your satisfaction and any certificates required have been issued, the balance of payment can be made and you can enjoy your new bathroom!