In the world of home improvement, the terms ‘renovation’ and ‘remodel’ are often used interchangeably. And well, they are quite alike. BUT when it comes to the actual project, there are stark differences.

Now, we don’t want to get into an etymology lecture, but it matters in the real world too. The first question that you should be asking yourself is “Do I need a bathroom remodel or a bathroom renovation?”. Planning will automatically follow. And by that we mean, the right kind of planning.

In simple words: It will help you plan your timeline, budget and align your expectations accordingly.

We talk about everything you need to know and more in this blog post. Feel free to contact a professional remodeling company to get a better perspective on your bathroom needs.

 

What is a Bathroom Remodel?

When you speak of a remodel, you are referring to various changes made to the appearance of your bathroom. It focuses on only making changes that affect the layout, design and overall appearance. So, a remodeling project is essentially reviving your bathroom to give it a new look and feel. It doesn’t involve structural changes to the size of the place, for instance.

In that way, a remodeling project deals with what is already present. It works on either transforming it into something new altogether or tweaking it to suit a new style or layout. So cosmetic changes like a new vanity, cabinet, countertop, etc. are a part of this.

Let’s put this into perspective. Say, you no longer like the humongous bathtub that sits in your bathroom, consuming all the space in the world. Say, even your use of it is sparse. Now, you plan to replace it with a custom shower that has all the modern functionalities. In such a scenario, you are remodeling your bathroom. While you are making a big change to the layout, aesthetic and functionality — the structure remains the same.

 

What is a Bathroom Renovation?

Renovation is the process of altering a certain room. Generally speaking, it can go beyond kitchen renovation and bathroom renovation. In fact, many people go for basement overhaul as well.

This is different from remodeling as you are making drastic changes to the layout or design of a room & also includes all major and minor improvements that help revive or increase the functionality of your bathroom. Renovations add quite a bit of value to your house if you plan to sell it sometime in the near future.

You might want to repaint your bathroom vanity or install new fixtures that give it a newer appeal or you may even want to change the entire structure of your bathroom, depending on the condition. This tends to reflect positively on the value of your house in the long run because of the functional value that it brings; not only to you but to anyone else who might live in the same house if it changes owners.

These important changes fall under the term ‘renovation’ as described by the home improvement industry.

While the differences are clear, there is often overlap and most people have a homogenous approach towards these two terms. Most don’t bother with the specificity of the project as long as they can get the desired changes. However, there are many factors that start making sense as you’re debating whether you should remodel your bathroom or renovate your bathroom.

 

Why Does the Difference Matter?

Now you might be thinking, “Do I even need to bother with the difference?”. The answer is yes. Your decision isn’t based just on the difference between these two terms but on the implications that these different projects bring. A renovation project, for instance, will most likely require a general contractor that oversees the demolition etc. There might be major changes to the plumbing lines too.

At the end of the day, your home is one of your biggest investments you can make…And you do not want to commit to a project and then feel the dreadful buyer’s remorse. Understanding the difference will help you set a clear path towards the improvement of your bathroom and by extension, your house.

Related: Remodeling Your House Under $15k

 

1. Details Matter

You may make the decision between remodeling your bathroom or renovating it but it is the contractor that will be carrying out the task. If you have a clear idea about whether or not you want to simply change the fixtures in your bathroom or alter the layout completely, you are better off seeking a professional opinion. Your contractor will be able to point out problems you may have overlooked and you can thereby make an informed decision.

Related: 6 Steps to Choose the Perfect Contractor

 

2. Money, Money, Money

Money is always the bottom line when it comes to real estate and all things associated with it. One of the major divisive factors is the cost associated with them.

While deciding, you need to have a set budget in mind and approach the decision accordingly. If you have the money and/or the financing options to carry out a big project then you should consider renovating your bathroom. If not, there are many advantages to making simple but effective remodeling choices in your bathroom that add tremendous value to it, thus giving you more bang for your buck.

 

3. It’s the Buyer’s Market

If you plan to live in your home for a long time, then the decision between remodeling and renovating can be completely personal and emotional. However, if you want to put your house on the market sometime soon, there has to be a rational approach to this decision.

Buyers perceive a renovated bathroom and a remodeled bathroom completely differently. A renovated bathroom is essentially a completely new one as everything has been ripped apart and newer, more long-lasting elements have been installed.

Remodeled bathrooms have a slightly lesser (yet overall positive) perspective. When you’re remodeling your bathroom, you’re only replacing things that needed to be replaced. You may choose to upgrade the bathroom with new cabinets or replace the bathtub, but everything else is unchanged. So, the responsibility of any future upgrades, repairs, and replacements will fall on the new owner.

This tends to create a divide among buyers who want everything to be pristine, new and among those who are willing to move into homes ‘that need a little bit of TLC’.

 

Final Words

The decision to remodel or renovate your bathroom is entirely yours. It has to depend on your financial situation, your preferences and your goals for the future. Both of these projects add value to your house, they just do so in a different way and on a different scale.