Planning to remodel the bathroom or kitchen? We all have visions in our heads of remodeling rooms in the house, and these rooms are no exception – we imagine perhaps a new vanity and countertop in the bathroom, a new shower, new lighting, new paint on the walls, a new mirror, maybe even a new toilet.
Before you get too carried away, however, there is the little matter of cost to think about. According to one source, the average cost to remodel a bathroom today runs almost $16,000. So, if you are still thinking about that remodel, here are a few tips on how to save some money.
You may want to think about hiring a designer or architect to help you. If you need to stick to a budget, they can be a big help. If you work with a plumber Los Angeles to come up with a plan for the bathroom or kitchen, you can be reasonably sure that your design, budget and time allotted for the project are on the mark. Hiring a professional probably will end up saving you money overall.
And make sure you have all of your ducks lined up before you begin the actual renovation. That means making decisions about what you want to replace and buying what you need. One of the biggest mistakes that homeowners make is buying products during the renovation, which can cause delays and other problems, driving up the price.
Leave the plumbing alone.
In other words, use the piping that you already have. Don’t try to move the toilet or the tub, for example, because that will really drive up the cost. It costs about $5,000 to move just one plumbing fixture.
The same is true for kitchen remodeling – use the piping that you have. Just as with the bathroom, it will run you around $5,000 if you move an appliance like a sink or dishwasher.
Keep the toilet.
Again, replacing an entire toilet can really add up with those installation costs. What you might want to do instead is just replace the seat and the lid, which can really improve the look of your toilet without having to buy a new one.
Look for used items.
You can find some really great fittings, shelving, cabinets, faucets, etc. if you look hard enough. Check out antique stores, flea markets, resellers, and auctions. You can salvage and redo items such as tubs, light fixtures and even sinks.
It is not always easy to find a good plumber. There are plenty of them listed in the telephone book, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are good.
So, the best way to handle shoddy work is to prevent it from happening in the first place. That means hiring a reputable plumber.
When talking to a plumber, there are several questions you need to ask him:
Are you licensed?
An unlicensed plumber is unlikely to have insurance or much knowledge of plumbing. Plumbers have to meet certain educational and experience requirements in order to get licensed.
How long have you been in business?
Obviously, the more experience he has, the better.
Can you provide references?
It is important to check with people who have used the plumber in the past to find out if they are satisfied with the work.
Are you insured?
A reputable plumber will be insured – and you will know that if a problem occurs, it will be covered.
Do you guarantee your work?
Pretty self-explanatory. You certainly want someone who is going to stand behind his work.
Do you belong to any trade organizations?
This is important because these organizations have codes of practice that their members must follow. Also, if the plumber cannot finish the job for some reason, another member of the organization will complete the job.
Also, to be sure, check with the organization to verify that the plumber is indeed a member.
So, you have taken all these precautions, but you still end up with shoddy work. What can you do?
First, talk to the plumber and tell him about the problems you are having. If he is a reputable plumber, he will take care of the problem at no extra cost.
If you encounter resistance, your next course of action would be to contact any trade organizations that the plumber may belong to. It is their job to find a solution to problems like these.
Finally, if you encounter a really stubborn plumber who refuses to take care of the problem, you can take him to court. For most plumbing work, small claims court is the place to go. The charge to file a claim is minimal. (When going to court, you want to make sure you save all records related to the work and bring pictures of the project as well.)