How to save money renovating a bathroom


This post has been written in collaboration with Gumtree

The decision to renovate a bathroom needs to be a timely and well thought out process. It comes down to having the right amount of money put aside to pay for the costs and organizing a time when the bathroom will be out of use so the renovation can take place. The biggest concern when it comes to any kind of renovating project is how much money is it going to cost and what can be done to save money?

Here are some ways on how to save money renovating a bathroom.

1. Keep the existing layout of the bathroom the same. This avoids having to core new holes or cutting up the concrete slab to put in new drainage. In QLD if a bathroom layout stays the same, there is no need for council approval fees. A Form 4 and a small fee ($26.80 if sent online, $36.20 if submitted by mail) needs to be submitted to council once the bathroom is finished. If the existing layout needs to be tweaked, talk to your plumber and see if any existing holes in the floor can be used for different fixtures.

2. Hire a builder. A builder will coordinate the project for you so the bathroom gets renovated in the nominated time frame. The builder will take away the stress when booking tradies in to start which means you won’t be paying for unnecessary labour costs due to lack of experience.

3. Work out what parts of the renovation you can do yourself and coordinate this with your builder. Painting can be done at night which saves costs hiring a painter.

Woman Painting

4. Choose middle of the range, well-known branded fixtures. Usually these are easy to install. Any fixtures that are from unknown brands are usually difficult to install which means a plumber takes twice as long to install the fixture. Brands to look at are Caroma, Fowler and Posh Solus from Reece.

5. If you want to install a vanity with a difference, purchase a buffet or chest of drawers from Gumtree and install your basin into this. This will save on cabinetry costs depending on the style of buffet that is purchased. Check out Appliances on Gumtree too as you never know what you will find. Some renovations require an upgrade to the hot water unit. I have had clients purchase a 1-2 year old hot water unit which still has life in it to save on purchasing a new one.


6. Replace copper pipes with a well-known branded plastic pipe. Some plumbers will hate me for saying this, but this is a way to save money. Most plumbers would recommend using copper because it’s a more durable product, easy to install and easy to fix in the future if a water leak were to occur. If you do choose to use plastic pipes, get your plumber to choose a pipe that is well known like Rehau.

Have you ever renovated a bathroom? Do you have any tips to add to my list?

This post has been written in accordance with my disclosure policy.