Does Your Bathroom Need Some Work?

Eagle Independent Newspaper Column

Your Bathroom- Does it need some work? Most likely if you fall into the72% of American survey responders that said that if they had to pick a room in their house that was due for a makeover or remodel, the bathroom was it.

Being the Contractor that I am, bathrooms are the meat and potatoes of what I do. Over half of my work is in this room. Often, the motivation is some sort of damage from water. A leaky toilet ruins the floor, an inattentive teenager soaks the walls around the tub, or a previous owner selected materials and colors that just won’t do any more.

Think about this if you are about to rebuild a bathroom. First, is it the right size? If not, where could additional space come from. What is on the other side of the walls that are shared with the bathroom? If walls can be moved, how much? Realize thought that there is a significant expense in relocating plumbing and electrical. These costs are hard to visualize because when all is said and done, the work to move these items is hidden from view. We can all see the romance and oooh- ahhh from the new soaker tub, but the vent stacks and new circuits for the lighting and outlets are not very exciting.

Spend a particular lengthy time choosing the surfaces of your bathroom. What people see in magazines and show homes, and what is best to actually live with are two different things. For example; those fully enclosed clear glass wrap around showers. They look great… till you take the first shower. Ever try to keep one of those clean? It can take longer than taking the showers!

Countertops and floors are similar. Visualize yourself having to clean and maintain the surfaces you interact with each day. If the degree of difficulty is high, you will find yourself putting off the cleaning.

I am a firm believer in quality over quantity. I would rather you have a smaller bathroom equipped with high grade fixtures, surfaces, faucets, towel bars and lighting than to have a huge bathroom built on the cheap with items you touch every day that just won’t last.

If you are going to install tile for your bathroom floor, be sure it is not slippery when wet and try to keep the grout joints as small as possible. I do not like to go over an eighth of an inch in bathrooms. The tile you choose may determine the spacing, but smaller grout lines are easier to take care of. Also, if you are of the particular age and gender that detests cold feet, a heated floor may be a good choice for you. Heated tile floors involve a dedicated electrical supply appropriate for the power load required. This should be determined and provided by an Electrician. The heating coils are installed between the tile and the backer board. A wall mounted thermostat controls the floor heat. They are programmable as to when they come on and turn off, on what days, and at what temperature. Yes they use electricity, but they also warm the room. And your feet.

Joe and Vicki Prin own Joe Prin Remodeling LLC, Idaho Registered Contractor #RCE-23530, and can be contacted at 573-1082 or Listen to the HomeFix Radio show hosted by Joe, Saturdays, 8-10 AM on 580 KIDO