Renovating any area of your home can be stressful and disruptive, but it’s particularly important to make sure you get it right when you’re dealing with a basement bathroom. While it can be incredibly convenient to have that extra bathroom when your family spends a lot of time in the basement or has frequent guests, getting things wrong when you renovate bathroom spaces can be downright disastrous. Fortunately, renovating your basement bathroom doesn’t have to be a high-stakes proposition. With a few simple tips and the right kind of help by your side, you can improve even the most dated and damaged downstairs bathrooms.
Budget Like a ChampionThere are times in life when it’s fine to fly by the seat of your pants, making decisions on a whim and going where the wind takes you. Unfortunately, renovating your basement bathroom is not one of those times. It’s easy for costs to get out from under you faster than you ever imagined, especially if you don’t have a good budget in place or tend to change your mind mid-project. Changes to the plan are expensive and time-consuming, so it’s always best to start your basement bathroom remodeling project with a set budget in mind that you try hard to adhere to throughout the process.
Your Plumbing is (Practically) Set in StoneOne of the best ways to make a dramatic, immediately noticeable change in any bathroom is to play with the layout. This can be a relatively straightforward process for homes built with a crawlspace. Basements, on the other hand, are built directly over a concrete slab. Renovating one that was built at the same time as the rest of the house means that, unless you’re willing to take on the expense, disruption and serious mess of cutting into the slab to install new pipes, your existing arrangement is basically set in stone.
Installing New Below-Grade Plumbing Is PossibleWhat if you’re planning a major basement finishing project and would like to add a basement bathroom where none currently exists? Below-grade plumbing options do exist, like upflushing, composting or macerating toilets. You don’t have to break up your existing concrete to install an upflushing toilet, for instance, and they’re not difficult to service or maintain. Ejector pumps are another option, depending on the particulars of your unique basement space. Still, upflushing toilets are typically the best option because tub, shower and sink drains can be tied into them to eliminate the need for complex alterations to your home’s slab foundation.
Yes, Permits MatterIntegrating a brand-new basement bathroom as part of an overall renovation project or completing a major overhaul of an existing one may require permits to stay on the right side of the law. Maintaining your status as a law-abiding citizen isn’t the only reason to get permits as required; keeping your basement up to code means everything is installed properly and eliminates the risk of fines or even an order to remove your new addition.
Get Professional Help with Basement BathroomsDIY projects around the house are a great way to save money, give your place a facelift and enjoy a sense of accomplishment, but not all jobs are suited to the DIY approach. Bathrooms are complex enough when they’re not below grade; basement bathrooms are an entirely different animal. This is when you need to hire the pros because a botched bathroom remodel can have a swift and brutal effect on your property value.
When renovation projects involve a basement bathroom, the process can be complicated but certainly isn’t impossible. If you’re ready to make the downstairs bathroom the best one in the house, Maxwell Plumbing is standing by to help.