If you are asking this question to yourself, you are off to a great start. Most people would just go and buy things without considering the consequences. And this is a receipt for both financial and emotional disaster.
But it’s easier than you think to get the best bathroom design and fitting services which can be affordable. You only need to understand a few concepts and do your homework. This way, soon you will be ready to implement your ideas and enjoy your new bathroom.
Table of Contents
Understand what bathroom design is
A bathroom designer plans how your bathroom will look like after being remodelled or built from scratch. He or she creates a type of projection showing what will go where, so they can list the materials and personnel necessary to make it happen.
Professional designers are experienced enough to tell you when your dream isn’t realistic. However, it doesn’t mean that you can come up with a project yourself, especially if you wish for something basic. So, let’s see how it gets done.
Searching for trendy and affordable bathroom design ideas
To come up with a plan, start with some research. Look for trendy and affordable bathroom design ideas. You will find plenty of suggestions online and in decorating magazines. But don’t forget to chat with family and friends and to visit home improvement stores.
Create a virtual album or a physical scrapbook. Or take notes about the solutions that better matched your ideas. Then consider if you will be able to implement them:
- Do you have enough space for a hot tub?
- Do you have enough money to pay for all that you will need?
- Can you live without a bathroom for so many days while the job is done?
Be honest about your answers. Adapt what becomes necessary. It will make things much smoother for you.
Choose the right design software
Your next step will be creating the project itself. And for it, you may need a bathroom design software. Yes, you can draw it by hand. But, except if you are a professional and understand perspective very well, the chances are that you will get something wrong. And poor specifications can make your contractor confused and cause waste of time and money.
Thankfully, there are many options available, including with 3D capabilities. A popular one is Sketch Up, which has a functionality especially created to help people to design kitchen, bath, and other areas of a house. It’s simple, free, and intuitive. You can use their models to get started and then print your plan so that you can show it to your contractor.
Try other tools
But if you didn’t like Sketch Up, you can test other design tools. Room Sketcher, for instance, allows you to choose between 2D or 3D plans, or even turn it into 3D photos, live 3D walkthroughs, and 360 views. All this with no technical knowledge. But some of these features are paid.
On the other hand, if you know your way around architecture software, you will be happy to know that there is one dedicated to bathrooms. BathCAD has been on the market for over twenty years, and it was developed to support interior designers and contractors. But it doesn’t mean you can’t use it yourself.
Design or Installation?
Another thing you need to be aware of is the relation between design and installation. Your plan must be created in a way that will help tradespeople to get the job done. It will be based on real measurements and definite possibilities, not your imagination.
In other words, forget your artistic side for a while. If the basin you want is 80 cm wide, make sure the project has it placed on a wall with a bit more than the same space to spare. The area will also need to be close to the pipelines, except if you are prepared to spend money rerouting the plumbing.
Design costs and estimates breakdown
Now, the hard part. Dealing with design ideas is great, but it has a price. So, you must be prepared before start asking for design costs and estimates. And by prepared, we meant understanding what it is involved and what the average prices are.
Even when creating the design by yourself, it will have a cost. You will spend the time to do research, time that you could be making money. You will also spend on transport if you decide to visit shops, and on software, if you choose a paid option.
But if that is just not for you, you can hire a professional to create the project. Their fee will vary according to their experience and expertise, but it might cost you around £1k in the UK on average. And if you need them to supervise the job for you, expect to be charged between 10 to 15% of the total cost of your bathroom – meaning that the bill can go up to £10k.
If it sounds too expensive for you, you will be happy to know that you can find cheaper options in home improvement store. Some of them might give you a free consultation if you buy materials with them.
The Lowdown: Should I hire an interior designer or go DIY?
It depends on your skill set and on how much time you can dedicate to the task. If you are comfortable dealing with all the details of your bathroom installation and know what you are doing, you certainly can do it yourself.
But if the task is too complicated, you don’t have time to spare, or if you don’t know a thing about plumbing and tiling, it’s best to hire a professional. Even though it sounds like an extra bill, it will save you money in the end. They know where to buy affordable materials and how to maximise your budget, among other advantages.