We purchased our homestead over half a decade ago. That sounds like a really long time ago. Time has flown. We have gained a ton of knowledge and made a lot of mistakes, too.
Our biggest challenge has been remodeling our home.
When we purchased the land, it came with a house that had been foreclosed on twice, and understandably, deemed uninhabitable. We made some quick repairs so we could move in, but we have been on a journey ever since to turn this skeleton of a house into our home.
I want to share with you ideas on how you can remodel your bathroom on a very tight budget. Believe me, it can be done because we had nothing to work with and had a tight budget.
This is how you accomplish it:
1. DIY Is Your Friend
DIY is your friend, especially when you are on a tight budget. You need to do as much work as you can on this project yourself if you want to stick to your budget. Now, I am not telling you to do anything dangerous (like electrical work) if you are totally inexperienced.
What I am suggesting is that if the task is not dangerous then you can do it yourself and fortunately, we will give you tips on how to go about it.
Hopefully, you’ll have enough money in the budget to pay for whatever needs to be done that you simply cannot do.
Or maybe you’ll find someone around you who knows how to do them.
But for tasks that you can easily learn how to do, take advantage of the internet. There are many sites that can teach you how to remodel a bathroom.
And when all else fails, don’t forget about YouTube.
2. Save It All
When you begin gutting your bathroom you need to be careful. I know you might not be able to save everything. But you can save some fixtures and other reusable items in the bathroom.
And whatever you have already in your bathroom that is salvageable – keep it.
Whatever you save means you’ll spend even less money. Take a scan of your bathroom before gutting it. Decide what you will need when remodeling and create a checklist.
3. Buy Second Hand
Now that you have a checklist and a budget to stick to, how do you plan on getting all those items that you don’t have and the others you can’t salvage?
Well, start scouring Craigslist and local yard sale pages.
We did this when remodeling our children’s bathroom. Our boys’ bathroom is smaller so we needed a smaller sink. We found an almost new pedestal sink. This was a great deal for us, and we only paid $25 for it. We did the same for our bathroom sink since I wanted a rustic look.
Thanks to my husband, we bought an old cast iron sink for less than $20 from the local yard sale page that just needed to be reglazed. You can imagine how relieved I was.
You need to do a little more research when you plan on buying second-hand items. But if it can save you money (which it usually can) then it is worth the effort.
4. Shop For A Budget Friendly Toilet
When replacing old fixtures, don’t feel like you have to buy the latest and greatest models. In fact, if you can’t or don’t want to buy things second hand, then it’s probably a good idea to shop around for the best value for your money.
Shopping ‘green’ is one option amongst others. Low-flow toilets are often a great choice, so if you happen to find one – jackpot! They save water which in turn, saves you money.
Start looking, there are more ways and options to purchase things other than at your local home department stores. In case you weren’t aware, you can actually purchase a toilet from Amazon. (Yes! Amazon!)
And we’ve even created a buyer’s guide for you here to help you find the most efficient low-flow toilet.
5. Build Your Own Shower
When we gutted our bathrooms, we did two different things. In our children’s bathroom, it was going to cost us entirely too much to replace their bathtub.
And I’ll be honest with you, when we took on their bathroom remodel, we had $600. Considering a new bathtub inset was over $700, it was obviously out of our budget. So instead, we cleaned their tub really well. Then we replaced their shower walls with tin which we bought for $12 a sheet, and gave them new shower fixtures.
However, for our bathroom, we had to do a little more. My husband is a tall man, he is almost 6’9”.
When we moved into a house that had a stand-up shower that he couldn’t wash his feet in, it had to go.
We took out the old shower and built a new one. We bought a shower pan and my husband did all of the plumbing himself.
Then, we used the same tin idea for our shower walls. Because we were able to salvage our shower fixtures, we had a larger, and functional shower for less than $500.
As a word of caution, I do recommend using the tin walls for your shower. It gives your bathroom a really neat rustic look. But cleaning up the soap scum is a struggle. When you install them, be sure to spray Rain-X on them so the soap scum will bead and run right off your shower walls. I wish someone had told me this earlier.
Regardless, I spray my shower walls with PAM cooking spray and it removes the soap scum. Just a few cleaning tips if you decide to go with that as a shower wall option.
6. Build Your Own Counter Tops and Cabinets
We are very fortunate that my brother-in-law works for a lumber yard. So any of the wood scraps that they can’t use at the mill they send home with their workers.
And we always manage to trade something we have for wood.
But even if you don’t have someone who works at a lumber yard in your immediate family, you can still usually build for less than you can buy.
If you are on a tight budget and need to remodel a bathroom, I recommend you build your own countertops and cabinets. Wood is fairly inexpensive and with the right plans, you can have the bathroom of your dreams built in no time.
But there are other options in case you don’t want to build everything. You can find an old dresser and transform it into a bathroom vanity. We did this in our children’s bathroom, and they are very happy with it.
7. Shop The Clearance Aisle For Paint
We just remodeled our kitchen a few months ago. And I almost fell over when I found out how much paint costs.
But since we were DIYing ourselves to death to remodel our kitchen for less than $1,000, I splurged and paid the regular price for paint.
However, most hardware stores have an aisle of mismatched paint. It is basically paint that was mixed differently than expected and the store couldn’t sell it.
Instead of tossing it, they sell it at discount prices. And this is great news for you because you might find a decent color paint that you can buy at a third of what it normally costs. You save money and stick to your budget!
Or you could even take it one step further and make your own paint.
8. Make Your Own Floors
You might be thinking, “What?!?” But it’s doable. You can actually make your own floors. And I know this because I did it in my kitchen. I did say I was DIYing myself to death.
It worked out so well. We have remodeled our boys’ bathroom, but we haven’t been able to finish our bathroom yet (only the shower.)
However, since using these floors in my kitchen, I want them everywhere. Here is how you make your own plywood floor.
And my reasons for wanting them everywhere are simple:
- They are cheap and easy to make
- Easy to clean (and if whitewashed, they hide a lot of dirt)
- And they are cheap to replace
Instead of going for tile or other prefabricated floors, why not consider making your own? You might be surprised at how much money you can save in the process.
9. DIY Your Décor
If you go to the store and purchase all of your décor items, you are going to spend a small fortune. So use these tips instead:
– Shop online
Purchasing bathroom décor online can often save you a lot of money because you are able to shop around and get the best deal. And some online vendors can simply get better deals.
– Make it yourself
There are so many different ideas online on how to make cute bathroom décor items. Save yourself a lot of money and try to create these items yourself.
Here are some items you might want to consider making yourself:
1. DIY Mason Jar Organizer
I love this organizer. It is actually one of the items I’m planning on putting in my master bathroom once we get the opportunity to finish it. And it is a great way to keep things like cotton balls, Q-tips, and even makeup brushes organized and out of your way.
2. DIY Soap Dispenser
We actually used this idea in our children’s bathroom. It’s a great way to help them keep their hands clean without having a soap bottle sitting around. And this was very affordable because since we preserve our own food, we had plenty of mason jars on hand.
3. A Hanging Shelf
This is a really pretty hanging shelf. And what makes it even better is that it can be made for around $10.
If you’d like to have an extra storage space in your bathroom for hygiene storage or even decorations then this option should be very affordable.
4. DIY Bath Sign
Wouldn’t you love to have a sign that would immediately tell guests where the bathroom is? If so, then consider this DIY as part of your bathroom décor.
What I love about it – beyond the fact that it is DIY – is that it looks very attractive. It would fit in great with almost any home décor.
5. Upgrade Your Light Switches
I only realized how expensive some small items are when we were redoing our home. Things that you rarely consider like an A/C register or a light switch cover.
Well, no need to stretch an already tight budget on a light switch cover. Instead, you can quickly add an inexpensive picture frame or another household item around it to frame it out. It looks fresh and new. And best of all, it won’t cost you a fortune.
Well, those are my ideas that will definitely help you successfully remodel your bathroom on a very tight budget!