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9 way to update your bathroom on a budget


Excess moisture, steam and general humidity can mean bathrooms start to look shabby more quickly than other areas in the home.

Unfortunately, bathrooms are also notoriously expensive to renovate.

We have come up with nine ways to update your bathroom on a budget because limited funds shouldn’t mean you have to put up with a less than pleasing bathroom.

1. Grab a new shower curtain

Shower curtains should be replaced regularly and if yours is looking like it’s seen better days, it is time to get a new one.

If you are not looking at renovating anytime soon or you have been renting your current home for a while, it might be a good idea to invest a decent quality shower curtain.

They’re usually heavier and more durable than cheaper ones and they’re a great temporary fix for a long-term problem.

2. Refresh your cabinets

master bathroom with cabinets
© breadmaker | 123rf

Give your bathroom cabinets a good clean out and throw away any bathroom products that have expired or you no longer use. If your shelves are looking a bit shabby use drawer liners to give them a spruce up. You can even replace tired old doorknobs and give cabinet doors a quick coat of bathroom grade paint.

You can do a whole cupboard re-vamp in one weekend.

3. Get it professionally cleaned

© Temple & Webster

Book an end-of-lease cleaner to come and give your house a proper clean and get them to pay extra attention to the bathroom.

Make sure you clean out the bathroom first so they can steam clean in all the corners. Houses are never as clean as when you first move in, so every year or two pay a heavy-duty cleaner to give the house a good scrub.

4. Buy second hand

You can renovate a bathroom reasonably cheaply if you buy everything second hand. There are some brilliant online stores that sell vintage and second-hand fixtures, taps, showerheads, baths and sinks. You can get a totally unique look for a budget bathroom renovation for a fraction of the cost of new items.

5. Indulge in a few luxuries

© Canningvale

If you rent and renovating is out of the question just make do with what you have and decorate your way to a luxurious bathroom. Buy some beautiful mason jars to store your bathroom essentials, get some delicious fluffy towels and burn scented candles.

Tip: Soft lighting will make even the shabbiest of bathrooms look gorgeous.

6. Retile it

Man applying blue grout to white tiles
© 123rf

If you own your home and you’re planning on staying around for a while consider putting most of your bathroom renovation budget towards re-tiling.

You can scrimp on second-hand, re-used or vintage tiles but make sure you pay a professional to do the labour if you’re not confident in your DIY skills.

Tip: It’s much more expensive to get a professional tiler to fix your mistakes than it is to hire a professional tiler in the first place.

7. Repaint it

Go to your local hardware store and ask for some help with bathroom appropriate paints and products and get cracking on repainting that bathroom. Most bathrooms have minimal painted surfaces so most repaint jobs can be done in a weekend and can be a solo job, which saves money on labour.

8. Update your fixtures

© Highgrove Bathrooms

A very cheap and easy way to update your bathroom is to replace the fixtures. A new tap and shower head can give your bathroom a very pleasing visual lift. It’s a simple and cost-effective way to slowly add incremental improvements to your bathroom.

9. Replace outdated lighting

An outdated and unflattering bathroom lighting situation can be easily fixed with a warm light bulb, a new lighting fixture or even a floor lamp. Avoid cold or fluorescent lighting in bathrooms and steer clear of bulbs that are too yellow. Natural or simulated natural light is always best.

This article was originally published as 9 ways to update your bathroom on a budget by written by Carly Jacobs.

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