Updating this well used room

The $150 Bathroom Redo

by Shaunna Privratsky

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The bathroom is one of the most frequently visited rooms in our homes. Yet it is often overlooked in the decorating process. A major renovation can put a big dent in the budget, not to mention the inconvenience of having your bathroom out of order.

Take heart! You can refresh your bathroom on even the most limited budget. The first step is deciding how much you are going to tackle, and how much it is going to cost. Let's set a limit of $150.

Remodel vs. Resale

If you are thinking of the resale value, bathrooms are second only to kitchens in importance. The problem arises if your remodeling choices are too personal or specific. Buyers want luxury, but in a style they like. If selling your home in the near future is a possibility, it is best to go neutral. Add your personality with accessories, which are easily changed.

Shower Power

A shower curtain doesn't have to cost a fortune. Walmart sells very nice ones for around $12. Or you can make your own with a $6 twin sheet, also from Walmart. Add a $1 clear plastic liner from a dollar store. A shower curtain sets the theme and color, so choose this first.

The Best Seat in the House

A new toilet seat works wonders and can be had for less than $5. Give the toilet a good scrubbing with a mixture of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. It should take out any stains and leave it sparkling for just a few pennies.

That Sinking Feeling

You can pick up a faucet and update your sink for around $30. Watch for sales at your favorite hardware store. It is simply a matter of hooking up the supply hoses and tightening the faucet to the base.

Cosmetics for Your Counter

Are your counters in good shape? If not, just use some creative resurfacing and reuse the old counters. For $10 for a specialty spray paint, you can have the look of granite counters without the painful price. Just mask off the walls around the counter and sink, open a window for ventilation, and follow the directions on the can.

Lighten Up

Adding a frame to your plain mirror brings out the glamour. Simply measure the mirror and pick up some nice trim for about $10. An inexpensive miter saw makes mitering the corners a snap. This is a rectangular saw that comes with a plastic holder that has slots for angle and straight cuts, which also makes it safer. Attach the frame with strong glue like Gorilla Wood Glue.

Pretty in Paint

If your budget only allows you to do one thing, let it be paint. A new color will change the whole look and feel of your room. If you are working around things like a pink sink or a dark brown tub, bring in a matching or complementary color that makes those items look intentional. You can give the room a spa-like feel with soothing earth tones, soft greens, or peaceful blues. Choose a color that fits the room and your taste. A can of paint runs about $20.

Rugs and Towels

Watch for "buy one, get one free" sales to really score some bargains when buying rugs and towels. Pick a matching or complementary color to bring out the paint color and shower curtain. Allow around $40, which should be enough for a rug or two and several hand towels.

Finishing Touches

Accessories add fun and charm to your bathroom.A few well-chosen items will bring out a theme or give the room the feeling you want. A great place to find accessories is your favorite thrift store. Splurging with just $20 will go far here. You can find like new items for a fraction of the cost of those pricey specialty shops. Best of all, your room will have a unique touch.

A Quiz for the Math Whiz

Have you been keeping a running total on our breezy bathroom redo? Allowing for a slight variance in prices at different stores around the country, you should come up with about $150. This is easily adjusted by varying the areas you decide to update.

Your Turn

Now that you are ready for your bathroom remodel, take the first step by planning your budget. You will be surprised at how much you can accomplish with just a little money, paint, and imagination. Create the bathroom of your dreams and you will have an oasis of calm waiting at the end of a long day.

Reviewed April 2017

Shaunna Privratsky is an expert in personal finance. Between writing, reading and decorating, she is always on the lookout for bargains. Shaunna is getting ready to redo her bathroom, as soon as she's done painting her kitchen cabinets. Please sign up for the free newsletters at The Discount Diva. You can also visit Shaunna on Google+.

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