Here's How Much It Costs to Remodel a Bathroom

by Team eLocal
Master bathroom in new luxury home

Bathroom Remodel Costs as a Glance

  • Total cost: $16,000-$20,000
  • Price per square foot: $125
  • Average labor cost: $6,000-$8,000

Are you sick of staring at pink tiles from the 1950s or the bad taste of the last owner of your home? A bathroom remodel is one of the best investments in your home, but it comes with a big price tag.

Having an idea of the average bathroom remodel cost can help you budget for your renovation.

What Is the Average Cost to Remodel a Bathroom?

The average cost for a bathroom remodel ranges from $16,000 to $20,000 for a 150-square-foot bathroom using mid-range materials. You can estimate about $125 per square foot to cover the materials and labor for a typical bathroom renovation. If your bathroom is much larger than average, expect your total cost to increase.

Cost Factors

The average bathroom remodel cost gives you a good starting point for your estimate, but the scope of your project can influence the actual price. Getting a detailed estimate from a contractor based on what you want helps you budget for the remodel or make changes to fit a lower budget.

Some factors that can influence the cost of your project include:

Preparation and Demolition

The amount of prep impacts the price. Lots of demolition takes your contractors more time and adds to the labor costs. If the bathroom needs repairs, such as replacing rotten floorboards, you'll also have more costs for labor and materials.

Bathroom Size

Larger bathrooms require more materials. You might also have more features, such as a separate soaking tub and shower if you have a bigger bathroom, which adds to the price. The project lasts longer, which means your labor costs will go up.

Scope of the Remodel

Complete remodels cost the most because you're redoing everything in the room. If you only remodel a few features, your cost will be less.

Existing Plumbing

The condition of the current plumbing is also a factor. If you can keep your existing pipes, you'll save money.

Moving Plumbing

If you're moving major fixtures, such as the tub or toilet, you'll pay more to have a licensed plumber move the pipes and drains.

Material Type and Quality

The materials you choose can greatly influence the cost of the renovation. High-end materials and finishes can quickly increase the total cost.

Expansion

Reconfiguring the footprint of the bathroom also increases the costs. For example, if you're moving the wall into the master bedroom to create a larger master bathroom, you'll have the added cost of moving the wall and everything in it, such as wiring.

Permits

Many bathroom remodeling projects require permits, which can vary in price based on the project and your location.

Building Codes

The building code requirements in your area might require your contractor to do more work to bring your current bathroom up to code.

Major Components of a Bathroom Remodel

If you're doing a complete bathroom renovation, factor in the following expenses. Keep in mind that the type and quality of materials you choose will greatly impact cost.

  • Standalone shower: $6,000
  • Tub with or without a shower: $150 to $5,000
  • Sink: $50 to $1,000
  • Bathroom vanity: $200 to $2,000
  • Toilet: $100 to $1,000
  • Floors: $1 to $100 per square foot
  • Lights: $20 to $300
  • Plumbing pipes: $100 for 50 linear feet

How Much Does Labor Cost?

The labor portion of a bathroom remodel typically ranges from $6,000 to $8,000 for a 150-square-foot bathroom. Labor costs typically depend on how long the project lasts, so an extensive remodel increases the labor portion. If you run into problems during the remodel, the labor costs could increase to complete the extra work.

How to Save on a Bathroom Remodel

A bathroom renovation is expensive, but you can save money by planning strategically and picking your upgrades wisely.

Plan Well

If you make decisions as you go, you're likely to go over budget or forget to anticipate some expenses. Plan all the details before you start working to have an accurate estimate.

Do the Demolition Yourself

By removing the old fixture, flooring and other materials in the bathroom, your contractors can get started faster. This saves you money on labor.

Handle Other Tasks

You can also save money by doing additional work in the bathroom, such as painting the walls or installing the tile. Make sure you're comfortable with the jobs you do, or you might pay more to have a professional fix your mistakes.

Reuse What You Can

If your tub, sink or other items are still in good condition, reuse them in your new bathroom. Having a tub refinished or a vanity repainted is often cheaper than having them replaced.

Keep the Current Layout

Expanding the bathroom or moving plumbing fixtures can significantly increase your costs, so keeping everything in the same location saves you money.

Limit Extra Features

It's easy to get caught up in fancy features, like Bluetooth bathroom mirrors and bidet toilets, but those extras increase your costs. Stick with simple items to stay within your budget.

Avoid High-End Finishes

High-end materials add to the cost of your project. For example, natural stone tiles cost significantly more than ceramic tiles. Vinyl flooring that looks like natural stone is another affordable alternative. One way to balance your costs is to choose one or two high-end focal points with lower-cost options for other materials.

Invest in Quality Pieces

While you don't have to buy the most expensive materials, you should invest in high-quality products that will last. If you buy the cheapest items, you'll likely need to replace them in the near future.

Remodel in Phases

Consider remodeling in phases to spread out the cost. If you're leaving the layout the same, you can do one part at a time. You might replace the tub first, followed by the vanity and sink a few months later.