This could be the shortest blog we've ever written. How long's a piece of string?!
That's a glib way of saying that although you can get a decent estimate of the costs when you're planning a new bathroom, the final bill really can vary depending on a wide range of factors.
Thankfully, Bathrooms Direct Yorkshire can help you make the most accurate estimate possible as you start to plan your dream bathroom.
Why does a new bathroom installation vary so much in cost?
The price of a new bathroom installation varies so much because each job is costed according to its individual circumstances. For starters, the size and shape of your bathroom affect how simple and straightforward a project will be to complete, how much material is required and the length of time it will take.
Plus unforeseen complications such as damaged pipework, which could increase the cost of the job, also need to be factored in as a contingency.
Tradesmen and bathroom fitters charge different amounts according to what’s being built, altered or installed. For instance, smaller tasks like fitting a basin cost from £70-£120, while larger jobs such as fully tiling a large bathroom can run to £1,000.
In 2020 the average cost of fitting a new UK bathroom was £6,500 - but it's always possible to save money by comparing prices and shopping smart. If you budget well and really do your research, you could potentially achieve a high-end designer look for as little as £2,000.
Naturally, quality should always be the priority, so it’s definitely worth paying a little more to make sure that your bathroom has a truly professional finish. If corners get cut, you might end up paying more later on to fix any expensive mistakes.
Size will have a major impact on the total cost of your new bathroom and clearly the larger the bathroom, the more work will be needed. However if your family bathroom has an awkward layout, this is also likely to require more work and push your budget up. Although fixtures and fittings inevitably make up a large proportion of your budget, on many projects labour can be the highest cost you incur.
Other factors that influence the cost of a full bathroom redesign include if you are changing its shape or size, or if you are creating an additional bathroom in a room not previously used for that purpose.
In this case you'll be paying extra for a plumber and other tradesmen to connect the fittings to the required services such as water, the waste pipe and electrics.
Bathroom fitting advice
As previously mentioned average UK bathrooms now cost around £6,500, but the final bill will vary hugely depending on whether you plan to do any DIY work, if you're starting completely from scratch or just replacing an existing suite. Although you can buy a new bathroom suite from as little as £200, it’s not always completely clear what will be included, so always check what you're getting before you buy. The cost of installing a new bathroom also differs on whether you're replacing the key items and fitting new versions in exactly the same place, or if you're planning to fully redesign the bathroom and install them in new positions.
Labour costs and timescales
A good early move is to ask any potential tradesmen if they have a minimum charge. Some fitters work in half-day minimum blocks, meaning you'd pay more to get a small job like a sink replacement completed, so it's often cost-effective to create a list of several jobs that need doing at once.
Unforeseen elements can also increase the cost of the project, such as replacing damaged pipework or extra tile work.
Another important consideration is if tradesmen use sub-contractors, which could mean it's more difficult to maintain an overview of who is doing what. Make sure to discuss with your trader whether they plan to carry out the work themselves, or contract it out. If they are using sub-contractors, how will they ensure the quality of the work carried out?
Another issue to take into consideration when estimating bathroom costs is the disposal of all the waste you create. UK tradesmen have to pay to get rid of their waste, and there’s normally a minimum charge for small amounts. You could dispose of it yourself, or potentially hire a skip to save yourself some money.
How long does it take to fit a bathroom?
Installing a new bath, toilet and basin is normally a straightforward job. The most time-consuming part of installing a new bathroom is actually removing any existing wall or floor tiles, preparing the surfaces and then installing the new tiles.
For a full bathroom refurbishment, you should expect the work to be completed in around six to eight days. If only the toilet, bath and sink are being replaced, then this should take about two days. Extra time and additional pipework will need to be factored in to your budget if you're changing toilet, bath or sink positions.
How much does a bath cost?
The cost of baths can vary widely. A budget-friendly acrylic bath, for example, could set you back as little as £80, whilst a mid-range bath can cost between £200 and £300. You should expect to pay more than £1,000 for freestanding designer and statement baths, especially if they are made from stone, cast iron or composite materials.
An inexperienced person can take two to three times longer to tile your bathroom than a time-served tradesman, so it always worth hiring an experienced, professional tiler. If there walls in poor condition and old tiles needing to be removed, this could increase a bathroom fitter's costs. Toilets and basins may have to be removed so the tiler is able to tile behind them and ensure a professional-looking finish. Larger bathrooms that contain a lot of doors, windows and furniture will also need extra tiling, leading to increased costs. The type of tile you select will also affect the cost of your bathroom renovation due to time spent on the job. Larger tiles cover the area faster, while small ones or mosaics will obviously take longer.
Electrical work is another significant bathroom renovation cost. If your bathroom hasn't been worked for in a while, it's a good idea to replace your old bulbs and upgrade to energy-efficient LED spotlights. Other electrical work might include fitting an extractor fan and/or shaving socket. Typical costs for bathroom electrical work are around £300.
If your old bathroom floor is tiled, it will take longer to remove and replace it, increasing the price of the job. Also, the bathroom fitter you choose may not be qualified to carry out electrical work, so it might need to be sub-contracted to other tradespeople. Whoever installs your underfloor heating must be a certified Part P electrician.
Some bathroom fitters leave flooring estimates out of their quote to provide you with a lower price, but it will then be added on as an extra. If you want new flooring, always make sure that it’s included in the price you receive. Vinyl flooring costs from £200 to £400, depending on bathroom size.
A hefty chunk of your budget will be spent on plumbing jobs such as fitting a new bath, sink, taps, bath taps, shower and toilet. If you're making significant alterations to your existing layout, extra work will be required, so your new bathroom installation costs will increase.
How to keep down the costs of a new bathroom suite
When it comes to keeping down the costs of a new bathroom, your first step should be to establish what is a real priority for you, and what isn't. Think about how your current bathroom is used on a daily basis, noting what works well and what could need tweaking. The cost of your new bathroom installation will be affected by:
Plumbing work (and ease of access to pipework)
Your choice of bathroom suite (size, finish, special features etc.)
The size of your bathroom
The location of the room within your home
The condition and age and condition of the property
If specialists tradespeople are required (for more complex installations)
To cut the costs of your new bathroom, don’t move anything that doesn’t really need to be moved. Pre-planning the layout is essential. You should think about where your existing water pipes and waste disposal are -they can be relocated but that will add to your costs.
Decide your budget up front, as this will guide your selection of bathroom components, and speak with experts like Bathrooms Direct Yorkshire for advice on how to approach your bathroom project. Some bathrooms have constraints that dictate which fixtures and layouts you're able to use.
Remember to take into account all associated costs and not just focus on the bathroom suite installation and tiling. Always choose professional tradespeople with the appropriate qualifications and experience.
Shop around and get a series of quotes from local bathroom specialists and suppliers to get the most competitive price for your installation.
We’re here to help
For expert advice call us on 01226 770383, or use the ‘chat now’ feature on our website. At Bathrooms Direct, we’re on hand to answer your questions and help you to find the perfect new bathroom layout at the right price.