StoneCraft Kitchen & Bath

Small Bathroom Remodel Costs

A Detailed Guide to Small Bathroom Remodel Costs

Remodeling a small bathroom is a popular and cost-effective home improvement project that can add value and comfort to your home. As a homeowner, you should understand the range of costs so you can budget effectively. Of course, costs will vary based on a variety of factors, but this should show you what factors will influence the cost of a small bathroom remodel when you employ a professional company.

1. Scope of Remodel


The scope of the remodel greatly influences the overall cost. Are you looking at a basic update or a complete overhaul? Basic updates such as doing a countertop overlay on an existing vanity, changing fixtures, lighting and paint are generally more affordable. In contrast, a full remodel, including converting a tub to a shower, moving plumbing or electrical outlets, changing flooring and cabinetry, will be more expensive.

2. Bathroom Size


Although we are discussing small bathrooms, size can vary. A typical small bathroom ranges from 35 to 48 square feet. The larger the bathroom, the higher the cost, because you will need more materials and labor. The shape of the bathroom can also play a role in determining cost, because an odd shape may be harder to work with, increasing labor costs.

3. Material Quality


The materials you choose plays a significant role in the overall cost. For instance, opting for high-end tiles, a more expensive countertop overlay material, and premium fixtures will significantly increase the cost. You should decide on a level of quality that suits your budget and needs, and work with your designer to see where you can save and where you should splurge.

4. Labor Costs


Labor is a significant component of the overall cost. Professional bathroom remodeling companies charge by the hour, and the region you live in can affect these rates, as can the complexity of the job. To alleviate some unneeded labor costs, you should work with your designer and contractor to create a good plan, that way there are no surprises.

5. Plumbing and Electrical


If your remodel involves moving plumbing fixtures or altering electrical wiring, the costs can escalate quickly. Plumbing work can be up to $300 an hour and electrical work can be similar, especially in the Bay Area. Again, having a good plan with your project manager can allow you to know about all potential costs and make decisions based on what you want the most.

6. Permits and Inspections


Depending on the location and the extent of the remodel, you may need permits, which can add to the cost. Adding fixtures where there weren’t any, redoing wiring or pipes, or other requirements of your location may cause you to need permits. Not only do permits have an additional cost, but you must add in time to your remodel because permits need to be approved, and inspections need to happen once the work is completed.

7. Custom Features


If you decide to do extra touches like a tile cutout in the shower, a heated floor, or custom cabinets, you may significantly increase the cost of your project. These features require extra labor, special materials, and more planning, all of which can increase your costs.

8. Unexpected Issues


Ideally, your project will go off without a hitch, but occasionally things come up that are unforeseen, such as mold in the wall, water damage, or outdated wiring. Since you never know what may happen, it’s best to budget for an extra 10-15% as a contingency.

9. Return on Investment


According to Remodeling Magazines Cost vs. Value Report,  if you are in the Pacific region (California, Washington, Oregon) you will get the most return on your investment for redoing a bathroom. In looking at their data, it looks like you can recoup upwards of 70% of what you spent when it comes time to sell. Of course, if you wait even longer for home values to rise, you can get back even more.

10.  Choosing a Company


The company you choose to work with will also factor into your costs. Read reviews, look up their license, ask to see pictures of their completed work and even get recommendations from friends. Choosing a remodeling company can either cost you money or keep you within your budget. Delays, poor planning, and mistakes can all add to time and overall cost, whereas a good company will adhere to a plan and keep your project reasonable.


Remodeling a small bathroom is a significant investment, but with careful planning and budgeting, it’s a great way to add both value and comfort to your home. Consider the factors above when looking for a. company and comparing costs and bids. If you understand what you are getting and work with a reputable company, you can achieve a functional, beautiful bathroom that meets both your needs and your wants.