Bathroom makeovers are usually incredibly expensive – it’s not unheard of to spend over $10,000 to update a medium-sized bathroom. But it doesn’t have to be that way! It’s absolutely possible to pull off a $1000 bathroom makeover. You just have to get a little creative with materials and be willing to do the work yourself.
Remodeling on a budget doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice the end result. By comparing prices, shopping secondhand, handling your own debris removal and recycling, and doing some (if not all) of the work yourself, you can achieve a stunning result on a small budget.
My dad and I worked together on this remodel to take our guest bathroom from the 1970s to modern-day over the past couple of months, and I’m so thrilled with the result. In this reveal, I’m not only going to show off the before/after, but I’ll be sharing how doing the labor ourselves saved us a lot of money, how shopping around for materials stretched our budget, how disposing of construction debris ourselves was less expensive, how saving on decor can really add up, and a cost breakdown of the whole project.
Doing The Labor Ourselves Saved Us A Lot Of Money
Here’s what we tackled ourselves vs. what we outsourced:
Things We Did Ourselves
- Removed the wallpaper and residue
- Removed the old vanity
- Removed the vertical posts
- Removed the old mirror/light fixture
- Installed the new shower curtain rod
- Installed the new vanity and faucet
- Repaired the drywall after the wallpaper was removed
- Hung the new mirror
- Hung the art and frame
- Installed the new light fixture
Things We Outsourced
- Toilet Installation
As you can see, 90%+ of this makeover was done without contractors, and that’s probably one of the biggest cost-saving pieces of advice that I can give. If you can do it yourself and you have the time and energy, you’ll save a TON of money.
There are actually a ton of other projects I’ve tackled in the past either by myself or with the help of family and friends:
- How To Build An IKEA Kitchen Cabinet Desk
- How To Secure A Wall To The Floor Over Ceramic Tile
- Do’s and Don’ts for Installing A DIY Subway Tile Backsplash
- Lots more on the renovations category here on the blog!
Shout Out to My Dad
My dad was SUCH a huge help on this project – though I definitely know how to get my hands dirty and love to roll up my sleeves, a lot of the labor on this project was done by him. With two kids 4 and under and a more than full-time job, there’s no way I could have done it without him. He does fantastic work, and I’m so thankful to have him in our lives. Thanks, dad 🙂
If you don’t have someone handy in your life that can help you, that’s okay! Nearly everything these days can be learned by reading a blog post like this or watching a YouTube Video or two – and a makeover like this is ABSOLUTELY within your reach, even if you’re brand new to DIYing.
Shopping Around For Materials Stretched Our Budget
I think I looked at hundreds (it felt like thousands) of different vanities before settling on something secondhand. I wanted something well-built, ideally with a stone top, and wanted to spend the smallest amount possible. Everything from the big box stores was on backorder or REALLY expensive (thanks, Covid), so I turned to Facebook Marketplace.
I found this super nice vanity from a lovely family that lived about 3 hours away from us – they were redoing their bathrooms and no longer needed it. It had a granite top, hidden hinges, and was in super good condition. My husband and I drove up to pick it up with the kids in tow, and saved at least $1000 in the process.
I definitely prefer to shop online and have things shipped when I can since I can’t often give up a whole Saturday to pick something up, but for a purchase as big as this, it was well worth it.
Disposing of Construction Debris Ourselves Was Less Expensive
Thankfully, we didn’t have a ton of debris during this renovation – but we did have to get rid of the old vanity. As you can see, it was in pretty bad shape. It was original to the house, which was built in 1977, and it has seen a lot of use over the years.
Normally when you hire a contractor, they whisk away the mess and you don’t see much of it or worry about how to get rid of things. But if you’re doing things yourself, where do you throw away something as large as a bathroom vanity?
We chose to take it to our local recycling center – it was free to drop off and we were in and out in about 5 minutes! Plus, it was getting recycled instead of going into a landfill.
If you happen to have a lot of debris, Bagsters are AWESOME and much less expensive than renting a dumpster. You can pick them up at the big box hardware stores, but I tend to order ours through Amazon because…I truly just don’t want to make another trip to the store when I’m in the middle of a big renovation.
By dropping our debris off ourselves and avoiding a dumpster, we saved at least $500.
How Saving On Decor Can Really Add Up
I don’t know about you, but I’m the kind of gal that likes to start styling and decorating ASAP once a project is complete. And decor can get expensive! I actually saved a ton in this room by reusing a few things and being strategic about what new pieces I decided to bring in.
There’s not a lot of room for art in here, so I wanted to make sure what I put up really complimented the whole space. It’s primarily a kid’s bathroom, but it also serves as our guest bathroom, so I was looking for something that balanced both aesthetics.
Thankfully, Elephant Stock reached out to me and was generous enough to send over the print featured above – and it perfectly melds together the two different styles! The blue parts read like a moon to me (my kids are obsessed with space right now), but the feel of the print is definitely more adult.
I mean, look at the quality of that print!
- Toilet (not necessary, but wanted to knock it out while we were doing everything else): $903.35
- White Vinegar (used to remove the wallpaper): $2.69
- Mirror: $118.96
- Toilet Paper Holder: $16.13
- Shelves/Brackets: $43.69
- Curtain Rod: $55.13
- Shower Curtain: $26.99
- Vanity Light: $189.99
- Faucet: $62.64
- 11″x17″ Frame: $30.00 (PS: I ABSOLUTELY ADORE these frames and own probably close to 10 at this point)
- Print: $19.99
- Paint: Already had on hand, but 1 gallon of Behr Marquee is $45.98
- Vanity: $400.00 on Facebook Marketplace
If we hadn’t chosen to have the toilet replaced, the total would only have been $966.21! For the impact that this makeover had on the home, I’m over the moon with how much we spent.
I can’t get over how big of a difference some hard work, research, and sweat can make – looking at the two pictures above, would you say the makeover was less than $1000? I certainly wouldn’t!
Have you ever considered making over your bathroom with a limited budget? It’s a big job, but it’s SO rewarding when it’s finished.