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Understanding the Timeline of a Bathroom Renovation Project

Bathroom renovation

Every renovation project is different. The characteristics of a room and your vision of the space make for an absolutely unique combination that creates a distinct adventure. Understanding the typical details of a home improvement project may help you to plan better, especially when it comes to scheduling and budget. Get to know the standard timeline of a bathroom renovation project and work out the details of your own remodel.

Planning and Design - 1 to 4 weeks

Several steps take place in this initial stage; some in conjunction with the contractor and others on your own. Since the homeowner needs to be heavily involved at this point, your personal schedule affects the bathroom renovation timeline.

Are you a good communicator? Can you make decisions within a reasonable timeframe? Those skills will improve the efficiency of this stage and help your project remain on course.

These steps take between one and four weeks to complete on a typical bathroom remodel:

  • Prepare initial design or gather ideas for the renovation - start by browsing local plumbing stores or searching the web for products, styles and layouts that appeal to you. Top brands like Kohler provide plenty of inspiration on their website and social media sites like Pinterest offer visual aids.
  • Meet with potential contractors - set up appointments at your home or take the floor plan and plenty of pictures in to the contractor's showroom to work on the design and budget together. Wise homeowners obtain at least three quotes to accurately compare companies and provide the best chance for renovation success. DIY fans skip this step, but need to spend more time on design and gathering prices for materials.
  • Choose materials and finishing this process starts in the design phase, but often changes throughout the steps above, with contractors and retailers offering opinions and ideas that shape the final selections. Choosing materials may take a few weeks, depending on the scope of your project, your physical location and availability of product specifications.

Ordering and Delivery of Materials 1 to 8 weeks

The span of time this second stage covers depends on the type of materials selected for your project. Standard items, such as plain ceramic tile, basic plumbing fixtures and off-the-shelf vanities and cabinetry, may be ordered and delivered to your home within five business days. Other special order or customized items could be anywhere from 6 to 8 weeks in production, with more time required for delivery.

Understand this when choosing your materials, and plan your bathroom renovation accordingly. Waiting for a special order product is well worth it in many cases, as long as your contractor can work with the delivery schedule.

Actual Construction 2 to 4 weeks

The pros over at About.com provide a quick reference chart for the construction stage of a bathroom remodel. Assuming the best case scenario, you can expect each individual stage to last one to two days. But having realistic expectations allows for greater flexibility and less stress when problems creep up or decisions must be made.

The following stages make up the construction stage:

  • Demolition This can be done while you re waiting for material delivery, but only if another bathroom is available. Demo generally takes one or two days.
  • Plumbing Rough Ins and Rough Carpentry The plumber needs to rough in pipes and drains before the skeleton of your bathroom is created. Rough carpentry provides support where necessary. This portion requires at least two days, and often more than four if you plan to move major fixtures.
  • Electrical The electrician wires up lighting and power behind the scenes, usually within one day.
  • Insulation Insulation keeps this room warm and protects plumbing in four-season climates. Putting up insulation takes just a few hours, even in a large bathroom.
  • Drywall and Mudding Once insulation is up, drywall can be hung and mudded. Hanging drywall takes just one day, but the mud application and sanding requires at least two or three more days.
  • Tile Installation (walls and shower) Tile makes for a stunning shower or wall finish and can be mounted onto drywall. Installation requires two or three days, including grouting and polishing.
  • Cabinet Installation Vanities and wall cabinets are mounted next, often within one day.
  • Flooring Installation Tile, vinyl or engineered wood provides a beautiful finish to your bathroom renovation, and goes in quickly, in a day or two.
  • Plumbing Fixture Hook Ups Fixtures get hooked up last, with toilet installation, sink and faucet hook up closing out the project in one or two days.

Finishing Stages 2 or 3 Days

Most of the construction is now complete, but you ll need to leave a few days of grace for miscellaneous issues, tasks and general clean up. Washing the floors, hanging light fixtures, putting up exhaust fans and hanging mirrors will put the finishing touches on your bathroom renovation.

This is also the inspection stage. Go through the project with your contractor and address any concerns you may have about products, installation or operation. Your bathroom remodel will transform the atmosphere and function of this important room, and now is the time to bring up questions and concerns with the professional contractor.

The typical timeline for a bathroom renovation depends on the scope of work and many other details. From the planning and design stage (1 to 4 weeks) to the ordering and delivery of materials (1 to 8 weeks), actual construction (2 to 4 weeks) and finishing stages (2 or 4 days), you have a long renovation road ahead. Take the time and be sure the project is done carefully, with quality workmanship and durable materials. A bathroom remodel changes your home in many ways, and it s worth the effort to have it done well and at the right pace.

Posted by: TrustedPros
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