Bathroom remodel costs might not be the highest in the house, but for as long as humankind has been renovating bathrooms, contractors have been raking in a pretty penny on the process. That’s because, along with your bedroom, the bathroom is the space in your home that you’re guaranteed to spend time in every day. And if yours looks like something out of the Middle Ages, maybe it’s time for an update. But just how much does a bathroom remodel—even just for a small bathroom—cost?
On average, a remodel of the bathroom will set you back $17,908, according to Remodeling magazine.
The average cost for even a small bathroom remodel will range dramatically, though, depending on a variety of factors—from whether your renovation includes moving plumbing and the toilet to which materials, flooring, countertops, and faucets you use.
“On average, you should budget $10,000 to $30,000 for a bathroom remodel,” says Paloma Contreras, a Houston-based interior designer behind La Dolce Vita and member of the National Kitchen & Bath Association’s trend forecasting panel, the NKBA K+B Insiders.
Other renovation factors that affect the average cost of bathroom remodels: labor costs, square footage of your master bathroom, and whether you choose high-end finishes, including new plumbing and countertops, luxury toilets and bathtubs, flooring, special built-ins, and more.
Here’s more of what you need to know about remodeling, including how to save money on a bathroom renovation and how a remodel will pay off in spades when you decide to sell your home.
Bathroom remodel average cost breakdown
What’s with the big price tag to renovate what’s sometimes a powder room or just a small room in terms of square footage? Well, it’s because of the midrange remodel prices for the big-ticket items:
- Cabinetry: $4,700 to $7,000
- Shower: $3,000 to $4,800
- Countertops: $2,800 to $4,100
- Bathtub: $2,600 to $4,100
- Flooring: $2,500 to $3,600
- Lighting: $1,100 to $1,700
- Toilet: $340 to $480
Average costs for a remodel vary by region—and custom carpentry, cabinetry, and luxury materials such as marble and high-end plumbing fixtures can add to the total cost.
Heated floors, in-wall wiring, fancy countertops and faucets, a walk-in bathtub, new shower door, and low-flow toilets will also increase remodel costs substantially.
To cut costs, ask a general contractor or a home improvement store for a free estimate for a bathroom remodel. Or ask neighbors for recommendations for low-end bathroom remodelers (just don’t settle for a rock-bottom cost of a bathroom remodel or a low-end quote).
Where to save on bathroom remodel costs
When you consider a bathroom remodel, know that basic or midrange paint goes a long way in any room. And you can eliminate the biggest budget item on a remodel cost checklist—cabinets—by simply painting your existing ones.
“My go-to, fail-proof remodel color for homeowners is Benjamin Moore’s Revere Pewter (HC-172),” says Contreras.
Full disclosure: You don’t need bath-specific paint when you remodel a bathroom. And instead of replacing an entire sink in the master bathroom, which can cost $1,400 to $2,300, simply update hardware for a few hundred dollars.
Contreras also advises homeowners that a small, affordable remodel change like a great, multisetting shower head can make your bathroom and the bathroom design feel more like a personal retreat.
Other bathroom remodeling ideas to consider: refinish cabinets and retile with affordable ceramic tile. And don’t forget to hit up a home improvement center like Home Depot for cost-effective faucets, basic toilets, plumbing and light fixtures, flooring, and countertop options.
Where to splurge on bathroom remodel costs
One high-end renovation to spend money on, whether it’s your master bathroom or a small bathroom: “Beautiful flooring surfaces that will wear well over time,” says Contreras.
Instead of worrying about staining pricey Carrara marble for a remodel, opt for something like Dekton Aura by Cosentino—an ultracompact, ultradurable, and easy-to-clean surface material that emulates the look of natural stone.
Quartz is another affordable midrange remodel material growing in popularity when it comes to bathroom renovations.
What’s a bathroom remodel’s return on investment?
The good news for homeowners is that all the money you spend on those bathroom remodel costs and renovations don’t just go down the toilet. Whenever you decide to sell your home, that shiny new bathroom remodel will catch buyers’ eyeballs.
The average bathroom remodel cost will help you gain back 66% of the money you spent on remodeling costs. So go ahead and consider your bathroom remodel (and that new toilet) the gift that keeps on giving!