Rip it up and start again: is it time to replace your bathroom?
Whether you’re a big fan of those super chic modern bathrooms or prefer the charms of an ornate traditional one, one thing we can all agree on is that nobody likes a dingy, damp and mouldy one. But how do you decide when it’s finally time to rip it out and start again, replacing the tiling, flooring and suite of your bathroom in one go? Here are a few things that might help you make up your mind…
Building regulations are now very strict about bathrooms in order to keep the occupants safe but that hasn’t always been the case. Depending on the age of your house, it could be that the previous occupant was a gung-ho DIYer, or was tricked by an unscrupulous cowboy builder, leaving you with a potentially lethal bathroom.
Power sockets, for example, are only allowed to be in bath (or shower) rooms if they are at least three metres away from the bath or shower. The exception to this is electrical shaver points, though even these must still be what’s considered a ‘safe’ distance away from the bath or shower so they can’t be accidentally splashed.
This is harder to check if your shower is electric and so has to be powered by its own circuit from your fusebox. While you may think that your bathroom is safe enough despite not complying to building regulations, if you do decide to bring it up to code then it may be the perfect time to tear out the whole thing and install an exciting new bathroom.
Most of us love a hot steamy shower or long soak in the tub, so it’s no wonder that bathrooms are the most susceptible room in the home to mould. If you’re unlucky enough to have it and if you can’t shift it even very intensive and repeated cleaning, it may be time to take action.
All bathrooms should have some type of passive ventilation or extractor fan to minimise excessive humidity and a wall needs to be wet for 24 hours for mould to start growing. Therefore, a mouldy bathroom is a sign of a long-term problem with lingering and excessive moisture. Perhaps that's a ventilation problem or maybe a pipe is leaking somewhere. Either way, persistent mould could be the excuse you need to give the whole room an overhaul.
It's devaluing your home
If you’re planning on moving soon then sprucing up a tired old bathroom is probably the last thing on your to-do list. Yet a dated bathroom could put off prospective buyers and may even knock a considerable sum off the market value of your home.
It might seem odd but the cost of installing a new bathroom to the house you’re selling could be far less than the amount you’d otherwise lose in the sale. While a certain audience still value them, the much-maligned avocado bath suite is frequently listed as one of the biggest turn-offs, with 44% of potential buyers saying such a bathroom would put them off putting in an offer. Compare that to 71% of potential buyers who said a new bathroom would increase the chances of them being enthusiastic about a house.
Other bathroom features that you should lose in order to boost a property’s value include Artex ceilings and textured wallpaper.
It’s all a bit tired
Even if a bathroom is still relatively stylish, if it’s all a bit worn-out from everyday wear and tear, it may just be time to start over. A bathtub that you can never get really clean, tarnished fittings, cracked tiles and black-spotted grouting could all signal that the space needs a refresh.
You don’t like it
Ultimately, this is the best reason to rip out your bathroom and put in a new one. Even if your bathroom is safe, mould-free and isn’t decreasing your home’s potential value, if it’s not your thing any more then that’s a good enough reason to give it a substantial refit.
It could be that you’ve gone off the colour scheme, that it’s got a shower when you’re really more of a bath person or that you fancy something a bit different. Bathroom refits can be fast and stress-free, so there’s no need to put up with a bathroom you hate.