Small Bathroom Remodeling Ideas with a Minimal Budget
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Small Bathroom Remodeling Ideas with a Minimal Budget

Discover fun and creative ideas for bathroom remodeling on a small budget. Simple and easy DIY projects that don't break the bank.

Like with all home improvement projects for small rooms like kitchens, bathroom renovation and remodeling takes a keen eye for creativity and a strong budget outline, even for folks who are looking to spend less rather than more.

Even operating with a small budget, bathroom remodeling can create that "wow!" factor with just a few new touches that can change the entire look of the room.

Creating more space with color

With a small bathroom comes the challenge of creating something that is visually pleasing and gives the impression there is more physical space than what there actually is. Bathrooms, like kitchens, are rooms that benefit from adding themes or a decor that induces a sense of calm, serenity and light. Color goes a long way! Adding color to the bathroom walls is the first step and with a smaller space, using a two-tone color scheme works great to add depth to the room without overpowering it. Creating a midline border to separate two colors will balance the light in the room so for example, keeping the ceiling and upper part of the walls a light shade, even sometimes white, adds to the quality of lighting. And from the border down, the walls can be painted with a stronger shade such as plum, orange, green or yellow. Using a wood panel border can add an earthy element even if the wood is a simple pine that can be stained or lacquered that gives this set of colors depth and dimension. In a smaller space, one quart can for each color of paint should be all you need which will cover your walls with 2-3 coats of paint that is evenly applied. Although it is wise to purchase two per color just in case. However, measure your area and figure out whether or not the amount in the can will cover that space evenly. An average price per quart is often less than $10. Depending on the space you're covering, you may or may not need a roller brush. Sometimes, simply an angled brush and flat brush are all you will need to cover the space you are painting. If you are painting over strong colors from a previous paint job, you may also need to first prime your area with a primer.

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Also, another idea is paint vertical stripes which adds the visual concept of a taller ceiling if your ceiling feels too close for comfort. But be careful, too many thin stripes can create a "busy" visual look and can actually reduce the appearance of space because it has the tendency to appear cluttered. So if you choose stripes to elongate your room and expand your ceiling, use wide stripes and stagger them far enough apart so that your eye is drawn to individual parts of the wall rather than being overwhelmed by it. You may also want to try wide vertical stripes only on the lower part of the wall, especially if you are trying to add the appearance of separate areas.

Go easy on patters. A word for the wise, if you're working on a small space, especially a bathroom that has many features like the tub, sink and toilet, the busier the walls appear, the more cluttered and even unclean the room can appear. So using solid colors can add a little something without adding too much.

Textures can be a lot of fun too! Some people prefer to keep their bathroom theme quite simple and paint the entire room one shade. However, while using the one shade, it can be fun to add the midline border and use a different texture on the lower half such as a stucco texture or even using a panneling affect that can give the appearance of depth within the neutrality of the single shade, as seen in the image below.

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Painting a bathroom can be much more cost effective than tiling an entire room and can be made just as durable. There are also special water resistant or waterproof paints that can be used which are made specifically for rooms that have a lot of moisture, especially around the tub area that can be applied rather than having to purchase brand new tile or even fiberglass tub inserts. For people who are wanting or needing to replace their tile around the tub or shower area can even sand along the grouted area and apply new layers of grout in the cracks as well as applying a new bead of calk around the tub and sink areas to prevent water leakage and places for mold to grow.

When walking into a small room, we want to bring the eye upward and keep things simple to give the appearance of a space that has room to breathe. Adding a floor-to-ceiling shelving unit in a corner area is a great way to elongate the room and also condense the amount of usable or open space that is available in the bathroom. And by keeping the eye pleasing items towards the top of the shelves can add an element of calm to the environment. Items such as aromatherapy candles, family portraits in simple frames, scent sticks along with a small flower arrangement or even a soft textured plant is a great idea. Keeping the towels in one central location as well can make use of them conveniently without getting in the way. So designate a shelf just for towels and washcloths.

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Make use of the shower area too. Considering the inside area of the tub and shower are one of the largest areas. There are simple racks or caddies that can be installed in most types of showers that give space for shampoo bottles, loofah's and more. This keeps outside shelves or bathtub corner areas free of soapy clutter and cuts down on the visual noise. Keeping bath and body products centrally located in one area also contributes to a cleaner space that takes less time to maintain. Many shower caddies can be purchased for less than $25 and some are even as inexpensive as $8 or $9!

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Replacing a toilet seat can be a huge step towards updating and improving the bathroom. Many quality seats can be found for as little as $25 whether they're wood, vinyl or porcelain. And what can be a lot of fun, especially if you use a solid color to pain the bathroom is to install a decorative toilet seat that ties in the color scheme or theme.

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Replacing or adding small little changes doesn't have to cost a whole lot. Wood cabinets can be stripped and stained with a high quality stain for less than $25 a gallon. Or cabinets can be repainted with small decals added that personalize the theme to match the rest of the bathroom.

Some people may not want to add rugs but for those that do, and they want to match the new color of the room, there are rug sets that can be purchased sometimes for less than $25. Walmart now carries many bath rug sets in vibrant colors. Home Depot is also a great place to spot accessories that won't break the bank. And sometimes a simple vinyl shower curtain liner works perfect in place of a pricy curtain. Some curtain liners are as inexpensive as $3 each!

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Great accessories that change the entire look of bathrooms are door knobs and handles. How about stainless steel? Or something brass or ornate? Handles are as inexpensive as $1.50 each or up to $12 each depending on which style and type of materials the handles come in. Some are custom order and others will be available on site.

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For less that $175, all of these improvements can be made and with a little creativity, anything can be changed from drab to fab!

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Comments (6)

Bathrooms and Kitchens are always the two most expensive rooms to remodel in any home. I really like the idea of using color to make a small room appear to be larger. Definitely cheaper than relocating walls. Good Job, Debbie.

Very interesting and informative write-up. thanks for sharing

Thanks Jerry! My bathroom now is probably one of the smallest I've had so far and shelves with midline borders and two tone paint on the walls has really made a big improvement in that space. I'm glad you enjoyed the article.

You're welcome Abdel :)

All these bathroom accessories would be really very helpful for making a bathroom more attractive..But i think its really a costly renovation idea..

London architect

That's great article, it is wonderful ideas for bathroom renovation in low cost. We welcome your suggestions as they help us to improve ourselves for good. Kindly remain hooked with us for more up to dates and some latest releases.