With an unlimited budget, anything is possible. But even if you don’t have infinite finances at your disposal, you can still find quality materials and make a few compromises along the way. A gorgeous, standard-size bathroom vanity can be put together for under $1000, including the cabinet, sink, faucet, and countertop. Here are some tips to keep in mind as you proceed.
If your vanity top looks dated, it has to go. The countertop is one of the most noticeable features in the room. Granite is the ideal top, but may be too expensive to have fabricated. Laminate counters are inexpensive but their telltale seams give away their lower quality, and they are easy to dent and scuff. Re-laminating over your old countertop is an iffy project – often the surface will “bubble” over time. An inexpensive but more durable solution is a solid surface counter. Solid surface tops are a step up from laminate; they offer inconspicuous seams and minor scuffs can be buffed away. Some manufacturers drill the holes for the sink and faucet so that you can install it yourself.
Vessel sinks are all the rage but are often too pricey for a budget remodel. The solution is to buy a vitreous china vessel sink. It costs the same as a standard-issue sink but still offers the pricey vessel look. Some styles can be partially submerged in the countertop, so that only two inches are visible above the countertop. This lower profile is helpful if kids will be using the sink. When choosing a faucet, make sure you at least pick one with brass fittings for durability. Also use caution if you choose a faucet with an oil rubbed bronze (ORB) finish. While ORB is the hottest trend, the finish can easily come off with harsh cleaners.
Builders commonly install “builder’s grade” cabinets in bathrooms (and kitchens, for that matter). While this lower grade does help keep the cost of a new home down, you’ll be ready to replace the cabinets in just a few years because they wear out quickly. Laminate doors can be especially flimsy. Change out your bathroom cabinets for one comprised of stronger, thicker materials and look for real wood doors this time around. Save money by purchasing a ready to assemble (RTA) cabinet. The average homeowner can put together RTA cabinets without difficulty.