How to give your bathroom an update on a budget


Does your bathroom need a refresh? (Picture: Getty Images)

When it comes to updating our homes, our bathrooms can sometimes be a little neglected.

And especially with the cost of living squeezing our purse strings even tighter, certain bathroom updates may fall by the wayside.

But the good news is that even just small tweaks can make a real difference to a bathroom space – and many can be achieved on a budget.

Ruth Foster, an interior designer at online bathroom retailer Victoria Plum, has shared a few tips for renovations that won’t break the bank.

Update your toilet

It’s estimated that around 1 in 25 British loos have a faulty cistern that continually leaks – adding precious pounds onto your water bill.

But replacing it could actually save you money – with many toilets available for under £100.

Ruth says: ‘Typical installation can cost from around £160 to £350, but that upgrade should serve you well for many years to come. 

‘What’s more, if your new toilet features a dual eco flush, you’ll be helping to save water too – a huge bonus, especially if you pay your bills using a water meter.’

Replace taps and shower heads

Give your bathroom an extra sparkle with some new taps or shower heads.

Ruth explains: ‘Replacing a shower head is easy to do and could also help to improve your flow rate or opting for a shower bath mixer tap is a low cost alternative to installing a full shower system.

‘There are a wider range of tap styles to choose from than ever before, with beautiful finishes like matt black or nickel to add fresh new style to your interiors.’

Tile your walls

Modern Bathroom Interior stock photo

Some fresh tiles can make a real difference (Picture: Getty Images)

Tiling your bathroom can give it an instant boost of colour, freshness and vitality – and it’s pretty simple to try yourself.

Ruth says: ‘You might be surprised to hear that tiling is something you can do without having to call out the professionals. Get rid of that dated wallpaper or tired paintwork and refresh your space with some stylish tiles that will make your bathroom feel like a sanctuary once more.

‘Plus, when you’ve finished you will have an immense sense of self-satisfaction at a job well done. Don’t worry if it’s not perfect, it will all add to the character.’

Fit inexpensive flooring

Well-worn flooring or broken and chipped tiles can really bring the whole look of your bathroom down – but there are some cost-friendly solutions for a simple fix.

Ruth says; ‘Vinyl or laminate flooring can be extremely hard-wearing and is available in lots of contemporary styles to suit a range of budgets.

‘The great thing about vinyl or laminate flooring is that it is easy to maintain. A mop and a little bathroom cleaner every now and then will ensure it remains looking as good as new.

‘And, what’s more, you can fit it yourself – even if you have very little DIY experience – so, no need to spend extra cash hiring a professional.’

Repaint doors

If you can’t afford to splash the cash on new cabinets, you could refresh the ones you have. If your existing cabinets are made from wood, refinishing them is simple to do, suggests Ruth.

She adds: ‘Begin by sanding the cabinet doors, then paint with a primer. The last step is painting the cabinets with a fresh coat of paint. Doing this means you can really experiment with colour too. Complete the cabinets with new door handles for an instant updated look that will last serval years.’

Put up some panels

An easy way to refresh a tired-looking bathroom is to fit some stylish new wall panels. 

Rush says: ‘Available in a range of colours and finishes, they can simply be cut to size then fitted over the top of existing wall coverings, like tiles, to produce a stunning new look.

‘For a more traditional feel beadboard is an extremely popular choice of wall covering. Ready-made beadboard sheets are easy to install and provide a relatively inexpensive way to transform your bathroom space.’

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