Bathroom Remodeling Timeline
Compared to a kitchen remodel, remodeling a bathroom sure feels like a simple endeavor.
In many ways, it is. You don’t have to deal with appliances, there are fewer cabinets, and the square footage is typically much smaller than the average kitchen.
Still, there are several things at play. There’s more plumbing than a kitchen. You have cabinetry and countertops. There are showers and/or bathtubs. There’s plenty of tile. There are also accessibility and safety concerns related to the ways you move around a bathroom: How accessible is the tub/shower? Are grab bars needed?
While a typical bathroom remodel takes anywhere from two to six months—from the first meeting with a designer to project completion—there is a lot of variability within that range. Much of the overall timeline depends on the size of a project, the flexibility of the client’s schedule, and how quickly decisions are made. A small powder room can be fairly simple to complete. A larger primary bathroom, or doing several bathrooms at once, will add to that timeline.
Here are some more details about each stage of a bathroom remodel.
Research Phase (Varies)
This part of the process is where you take time to plan and dream. What do you want your new bathroom to be?
- Gather Inspiration. Look through websites like Houzz to find bathroom designs and ideas that speak to you. Do you want to remove a tub? Would you like to incorporate a steam shower? What colors and finishes are you drawn to?
- Research Design Professionals. Look for contractors and Bath Designers in your area. Ask for recommendations and schedule consultations to find people who are a good fit for you—you’ll be working closely with them for several months! Your timeline will likely be heavily informed by your contractor’s schedule since many of them are still booking out several months in advance.
- Create a Budget. Your designer and contractor will be able to assist you with setting a realistic budget and payment schedules.
Design Phase (1-3 months+)
You’ll meet with your Bath Designer several times to create and tweak the plans and finishes for your space. Most bathrooms go through a revision or two before settling on final plans.
- Space Planning. You’ll work with your designer to figure out how best to use your space. Sometimes this is simple: cabinets and plumbing are just being replaced, but not moved. Other times walls, plumbing, and cabinetry are moved to create a more functional bathroom space.
- Select Finishes. This includes everything from countertops and cabinet color to flooring type and shower tile.
- Finalize Plans. Once everything has been selected, your designer will finalize your bathroom plans so you can sign off on the design and finishes. Your first down payment will also be due at this time.
- Order Products. After making your down payment, your designer will order everything for your project, from cabinetry to cabinet knobs. Plumbing fixtures will also need to be ordered at this time, as well as any products or installation materials being provided by the contractor.
Demo Phase (A few days-3 weeks)
The most dreaded part: your house is under construction! If only minor changes are happening, this part can move quickly. More extensive projects will take more time.
- Rip Out Existing Bathroom. Everything must go! Your contractor will keep anything that might be reused, such as plumbing fixtures, and demolish and/or dispose of everything else.
- Structural Changes. The room will be framed, including any new walls. Plumbing and electrical components will also be roughed in at this time.
- Finish Walls. The walls will be hung with new drywall where needed. The room will also be patched and painted in preparation for the new cabinetry to be installed.
Construction Phase (1-2 months+)
The fun part! Your bathroom might still be under construction, but there is also tangible, finished progress.
- Install Cabinets. The cabinetry and any related components will be installed first. The second payment is due upon delivery of cabinetry.
- Measure and Install Countertops. After the cabinetry is in place, the space will be measured for countertops. This part can be hard to wait for: the lead time for fabrication and installation of countertops can be anywhere from 2-6 weeks.
- Final Touches. Cabinet hardware, accent tile, towel bars, and any other finish work is completed now.
- Final Walk Through. Any outstanding issues are addressed at this time and your final payment is due.
The part everyone has been waiting for! The bathroom of your dreams is now complete and exists in your very own home. Start relaxing and enjoying your new remodeled bathroom!