DIY Bathroom Remodel - Here's the Actual Costs

Discussion in 'Shower & Bathtub Forum & Blog' started by DougB, Jul 9, 2014.

  1. DougB

    DougB Member

    These are the costs for remodeling my master bath. The material was purchased between August 2013 and May 2014. The room is about 9’ x 10’, and was demoed down to the studs. Location: Minneapoils, MN.
    I would say that this is a solid middle to upper middle renovation.

    Permits /demo / new window ($1497):
    Plumbing permit $160
    Building permit $233
    Electrical permit $ 75

    Demo: 3 Bagster Loads @ $100 load $300
    36x48 custom sized Anderson window $729
    low-e with privacy rain glass

    Tile and related materials ($3362):
    70 sq/ft 12x24 Italian porcelain tile (floor) $490
    300 sq/ft 12x12 Italian porcelain tile (walls) $1797
    34 bullnose $275
    16 sq/ft Benai Mosaic – decorative band $276
    4 – 40 lb Ardex X77thinset $160
    2 – 25 lb Lacticrete grout $65
    5 - ColorRite 100% silicone caulk $84
    4 - 8’ Schluter Rondec $48
    1 Gallon Hydroban $65
    Double Shower Niche – Tile Redi $102

    Floor and heating ($806):
    3 Sheets ¾” BC-X plywood $100
    3 50lb Bags SLC $120
    RPM floor mats and Warmwire $484
    Honeywell thermostat $160

    Fixtures ($3250):
    Toto In-Wall Tank System $376
    Toto Aquia toilet bowl $231
    Toto flush plate and seat $184
    Kohler Expanse acrylic tub $795
    Athena 48”Vanity ( $1,449
    Includes mirror / vitreous top / sink
    Horus lighted make-up mirror $215

    Electrical ($833):
    Fantech RVF4XL exaust fan & damper $200
    Tjerlund shower drying fan (smarthome) $240
    Romex $150
    Misc Electrical – boxes / connectors $150
    5 Tamper resistant GFI $93

    Lighting ($821):

    3 wall sconces, 3 recessed cans & trim $821

    Plumbing fixtures ($1479):
    Toto TL630SDH vessel faucet $334

    Grohe – brushed nickel: tub spout, shower 1,145
    arm, shower head, pop-up sink drain,
    cable tub drain, thermostatic diverter,
    rough-in valve body.

    Rough plumbing ($725):
    Copper tubing & fittings $100
    PVC drain pipe & fittings $200
    Labor – plumber friend help with $425
    drains & venting.
    Misc ($350):

    1 Gallon Benjamin Moore Aura - Ceiling $50

    Drywall, cement board, insulation,
    shop supplies, dimension lumber
    & other misc materials $300

    The entire cost is $13,123.
    Terry and Vegas_sparky like this.
  2. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Cave Creek, Arizona
    That is the cost of YOUR remodel in Minnesota using YOUR choice of materials. It probably has NO relevence to anyone else who has their own preferences and are bound by local prices on materials AND labor, plus differences in local administrative costs. A remodel of a room that size could range from $5,000.00 to $30,000.00 and both customers would be happy with the results.
  3. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple Bathroom Design & Build - North Vancouver, B.C.

    North Vancouver, BC
    Thanks Doug.

    These costs help people understand what's involved in a bathroom renovation. Now what about tools Doug? Did you own all of them or did you borrow or rent. I own about $25,000 grand in gear....
  4. DougB

    DougB Member

    What's with the 'attitude'? I take your comment as a 'put down' - I can't understand why?

    Obviously, readers will know it's an example.
  5. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple Bathroom Design & Build - North Vancouver, B.C.

    North Vancouver, BC
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2014
  6. DougB

    DougB Member

    Naturally, there's a lot of hidden costs not included in that Bill of Materials.

    I have about $5,000 in tools that I've purchased over the years as I've taken on more and more DIY projects: drills / sawzall / MK tile saw / grinders / Hilti demo hammer / air compressor - etc. Nothing real exotic.

    What I really underestimated was the time it took to tile the walls. 330 sq/ft of 12x12 tile. I really worked to get the walls flat. In retrospect I think it would have been just as easy to mud the walls - then they would have been completely flat. My wife wanted this decorative 4" band of mosaics - around the room. Between the 12" tile and that mosaic band - I wound up cutting probably 1/3 of the tile (cause the floor / ceiling were not level). This took a long time - since I'm working alone, and you can't precut the wall tile (as you can when laying out a floor). I had to do most of the wall tile on weekends - many weekends.
  7. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple Bathroom Design & Build - North Vancouver, B.C.

    North Vancouver, BC
    True Perfection does take time. Most tile men need to cut corners to make money. Save time. Build faster. Things like that.

    Tile pros often use thin waterproofing membranes. The cheapest thin-sets. Things like that. You know, kind of how Jim prefers to build a shower.

    You took your time. Be proud of that. You also did the job start to finish. Next time you will do a better job of boarding. Or framing.

    I try and set 15- 50 square feet a day. Perfectly. If people want the job done in two days I recommend they call Home Depot or Bath Fitters.

    Some pros even recommend Spot Setting Tile in their e-books? Tile Hacks are everywhere.
  8. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Bothell, Washington
    I like that you put the list on here. There are so many ways a bath can be done, and it's nice to see a cost breakdown of yours.

    It's funny you mention the tools in a latter post. I was just commenting this week to my son, that the next time I hear from someone wanting to know our hourly wage, I will include, but I also have four hour or daily rentals on any tools in my van. I can add those costs to the hourly bill too.
    It's not uncommon to pull out a $95 dollar drill bit to do a job that can "only" be done with it. Having it there makes all the difference. :)
    There have been times I've had to rent tools, tools that either broke that day, or something I hadn't bought yet. It gets pretty spendy.
  9. RedShoecounterbalance

    RedShoecounterbalance Stay away from ladders

    DougB...... Thanks this is great. I do see material and some administrative costs. Now add all your skilled labor at an hourly rate, Add insurance and additional admin work, jobsite conditions, set up tear down, fuel, the random tool breakdown etc. !! Just like you would as an electrician....wet saw blades are minimum of $40, for example......

    This is actually what people need to understand when differentiating price quotes from Pro/insured buisness vs. weekenders. Still A great price breakdown and helpful If it is just A DIY er looking to attempth them selves.. they can evaluate part of what it takes....
  10. ankhseeker

    ankhseeker Member

    Same thing for Auto repair only the mechanic needs more specialized tools for all the makes and models they work on.
    Sheez, nothing is simple anymore.
  11. DougB

    DougB Member

    As a software developer / engineer I've worked on large projects. From my experience, bathrooms are the most difficult room in the house. Nobody should tackle a bathroom unless they have done other extensive remodeling, and have a lot of uninterrupted time (like all weekends) - otherwise I could see it dragging on for years. We're older, no kids in the house, wife has time to fix meals, etc. Could not have done this 15 years ago.

    Calendar time - I have worked 10 months on this remodel. I figure it would have cost $30k - $35k to have someone do it. The benefit of DIY (if you can produce a good result) is that you can get a product that otherwise be uneconomical. By this I mean that our 1950's bathroom was not only outdated, but poorly laid out. My wife who is good at design, understood she could rearrange things except for toilet and the window. Her design necessitated that I had to repipe all the drains, and the water suppies. Same for the lighting. But now the room 'works' and 'looks' like 2014.

    I'm not quite done (no fixtures installed). I'll post some pictures soon.
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2014
  12. eurob

    eurob master tile and stone installer

    That's a pretty close number for a project like yours . -- 30K to 35K -- . I can assume that one of the most important decisions was -- not to cut corners -- ........ which is very hard to accomplish when pressured .

    I would also say that not having designer fees and cost prices , really helped .

    Can't wait to see the pics .:)
  13. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple Bathroom Design & Build - North Vancouver, B.C.

    North Vancouver, BC
    Terry I asked him that question just for that reason.

    People forget we have to buy these tools and replace them. My demo hammer is a $1200.00 tool. I got $11,000 in carpentry tools in my shop. A box a dill bits worth $1,000 easy and on and on.
  14. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Attitude, you see when I really have an attitude. I can see it now. Someone calls for a bathroom remodel and I tell them it will be $23,000.00. They respond, "You've go to be kidding. Doug said it should only cost about $13,000.00. You are trying to rip me off so I will do it myself. After all, how hard can it be?"
  15. DougB

    DougB Member

    All of us self employed people deal with this 'stuff''. People like this are the people you don't want as a customer. As we say in the software industry: "They don't have the money to do it right the first time, but they have the money to do it over and over again." I get calls, 6 months later, asking me if I will take a 'look' at their ''new system" which the original developers can't seem to get working correctly. Now I say 'sorry' I can't work on their code. Whey I was first starting out, I went to the perspective client, who had previously rejected my bid, and now had a POS software system. The first thing told me was "you need to fix this for $1000" - I realized I wasted my time and a couple gallons of gas.

    I posted that BOM (bill of materials) to show what all you need to consider. Also, intelligent DIY'ers get some sort of feel.

    If you think that my post is a spoiler, consider that folks like this, will call HD, Lowes, Next Day Bath, etc, etc.
  16. koa

    koa Member

    I ship live fish. People want our quality at the other guy's price. Airlines can raise their container freight rates by hundreds of dollars and we don't hear any complaints. We raise the price of a $9.00 fish to $9.25 and it's the end of the world.
  17. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Cave Creek, Arizona
    when someone asks "Is that your best price", I tell them it is the "ONLY" price, but if they want a cheaper plumber, I have a couple of phone numbers they can use.
  18. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    New England
    The fundamentals of a shower build are often a small part of the overall costs. The finishing materials can vary by a factor of over 100:1 if you go with some rare, lovely looking natural stone or fancy glass to an inexpensive, but totally serviceable ceramic. The same thing with the fixtures - a serviceable Delta valve verses something like a Dornbracht high end valve. The fundamentals are what determine if the shower will survive without problems, the surface materials certainly can make it look either good or bad, but have little to do with whether it will be waterproof and keep the structure intact. Some people only look at the surface, and end up disappointed.

    Having the right tool for the job can make it much easier and faster and probably neater, and can be a significant cost, but in some cases, can be rented for a small fraction of what it costs to own one. This, for a DIY'er, is often the most cost effective way to complete the job verses buying one for what may end up as a one-time use.

    My point is, the final cost of a shower remodel really must have two parts: the prep up to the point of the finish materials, and then the finish materials. The method you choose to do the first varies MUCH less than the later. And, even the prep work can vary quite a bit, depending on whether there are fundamental layout changes, or replacing something that is in reasonable shape. The materials once that initial prep work is done could consist of premade bits (pan, curb,), cbu, or a membrane, whether liquid or sheet.
  19. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple Bathroom Design & Build - North Vancouver, B.C.

    North Vancouver, BC
    Some ethnic groups will not do business with you if you do not reduce your price a little. If you have three months of work booked great - hold your ground.

    If you need to pay your truck payment and feed your kids you might just reduce your price by 10% and work late that week to make up the time.

    I know that's what I'm doing this week.

    KOA in the restaurant Industry some of the spots work on profit margins under 10% and price hike of any kind is messy.

    Doug I like your posts showing what things cost.

    We should also talk about how physically hard the job of building a shower can be. Most people are not up to the challenge. Bags of thin-set can weigh 60 pounds. Boxes of tile 50 plus.

    The freaking Indonesian Shower base we flipped yesterday a good 300-400 pounds. Man was that heavy.
  20. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple Bathroom Design & Build - North Vancouver, B.C.

    North Vancouver, BC
    Shower Renovation Pricing - Vancouver Supplies

    Doing some paperwork this morning.

    Here are some current local Vancouver Pricing on various materials.

    June 6, 2014 Pacific Rim Flooring

    Nano Scrub QT 10.29 plus tax
    2 Gal Mixing Bucket 4.00 plus tax
    Grout Sponge 1.71 plus tax
    2 pack white scrub pads 6.01 plus tax.

    Total with Tax $29.13

    These items I used for the cleaning of the master shower in UBC. Total labour roughly 10 hours over three days.

    Ames Bros Tile - June 6, 2014

    Poultice Stain Remover 3/4lb $7.12 plus tax

    In the end I did a test and did not work with this product
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