Bathrooms are one of the most personal rooms in the home to remodel. They get a lot of daily use, and the way that people interact with space mean that it has to be both functional and stylish enough to make you glad to be there. Unfortunately in most areas, the average cost of remodeling a bathroom runs about $250 a square foot. For an average 5 x 7 bathroom, that means that from beginning to end the remodel will run you about $8,750 if you choose midline products and replace every area of the room from the flooring to the faucets. So what if you need to remodel the bathroom, and want a stylish, midline design, but don’t have the funds necessary to tackle it? Rather than putting off the job, or trying to save by choosing lower quality products, consider using a few of these tips to remodel your bath on a budget.

Speak Up

Whether you use a bathroom designer or you hire a handyman to do the work while you source materials yourself, you need to be upfront with everyone you speak with about what your budget is. People who work in showrooms that sell materials for the bath will show you what they think you’ll want to see based on your description. But if you don’t mention your budget, they may end up showing you things you can’t afford, which could lead to you wandering into Home Depot and choosing something inexpensive, but not what you wanted.

By speaking up, you give the people you work with the ability to get creative and help you locate items in your budget. These people want to help you, they want to make a sale, and often times love a challenge. For example, a design consultant that understands your budget needs and your love of glass tile may be able to combine glass with less expensive ceramic tile to give you a beautiful look for less.

Check Out Odd Lots

Visit any high-end bathroom or tile showroom, and you’re likely to find a lot of things that inspire you, but that doesn’t necessarily work with your budget. Now ask to see their odd lot – the items that were returned, ordered incorrectly, or that are left over from larger jobs. Odd lots are usually marked way down for quick sale, and you can sometimes find things like air jet tubs, mosaic tiles, and high-end faucets for a fraction of what they would cost if you had ordered them directly. You may have to get creative with some of the finishes, but by starting with the odd lot room, you can pick up one or two things and build the rest of the space around them, saving you money and getting you some luxurious materials at the same time.

Ask About Remnants

If you’re planning on having a stone vanity top, shower jamb, or door jamb in your bathroom, pay a visit to your local stone yard and ask to see their remnants. Remnants are smaller pieces of stone left over from big jobs like kitchens or bar tops. They’re usually too small to be used in another kitchen, but may be perfect for a bathroom vanity with enough left over to give you a matching door or shower jamb. Best of all, because you aren’t paying for the whole slab, you can get remnants for pennies on the dollar. This is an excellent way of getting exotic stones like Blue Celeste that work well in bathrooms, but at $300 a square foot are often out of people’s budgets.

Pick One Thing You Love

Is there one thing you really have to have in the bathroom? Maybe it’s a radiant heat floor or a luxury towel warmer, or maybe it’s a beautiful tile mural above the bathtub. Whatever it is that would bring you joy, splurge on that. You can cut corners everywhere else without noticing it if you have one thing in the room that really makes you happy.

Set a Budget and Stick to It

Remodeling a bathroom on a budget is possible. It’s even possible to bring your costs down to well under $100 a square foot, even when using a designer. Set a realistic budget early on and stick with it using these tips, and you’ll find that you have a beautiful bathroom for a lot less than you imagined.

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