Diy bathroom ideas on a budget

Plan the order of works well so that you don’t own to redo or undo work. Wiring and plumbing issues need resolving before you start installing cabinets, flooring and wall finishes.

Ahead of your project, hold an eye out for deals on big-ticket items such as baths and tiles.

How to plan a little bathroom – need to know

Will a bath fit in a little bathroom?

Image credit: Ashley Morrison

As we mentioned earlier, a freestanding bath can be a excellent option, as these also come in smaller sizes. D-shaped baths also get the glance perfectly but own one flat side, which butts up against a wall. In bathrooms with a tricky layout, a corner bath could work well.

Where do I start planning a little bathroom?

Kitting out a tiny bathroom might seem a challenge, but there’s no need to comprise on style.

Decide what bathroom features are significant to you, be that a bath or additional storage. Then draw out a scale plan, allowing space around the fittings for moving around the room.

Keep the loo in put if possible as moving the soil stack can be a costly occupation. Don’t forget to include those luxurious touches, such as statement tiles or underfloor heating for chilly mornings.

Can I squeeze a shower in a little bathroom?

Shower enclosures come in every shapes and sizes, including space-saving quadrant designs, which are a tidy fit for a tight corner. Or, go for a wet room with a tiled floor or a low shower tray. A glass panel separates the space and contains any splashes, making the room feel bigger, too.

If you can’t live without a bath, fit an over-bath shower, or a shower bath for more room.

How do I maximise space in a little bathroom?

Fitted furniture will unlock storage potential dramatically, adapting to the most awkwardly shaped spaces, and can conceal pipework.

For a boutique hotel vibe, go for a wall-hung loo and basin unit with drawers and tall cabinets to match. This will free up floor space, giving even the smallest room a clutter-free feel.

Get your tiling just right: How to tile a bathroom floor

Don’t let a compact room be a barrier to creating your dream scheme – we’ve got every the tips, tricks and expert advice you’ll need. Let us know how you will be visually expanding your bathroom. Will you be using any of these little bathroom ideas?

Wall-mounted mixer taps work well in compact bathroom designs as the pipework can be hidden without the need for a basin pedestal.

You can use that freed-up space to home shelving or a laundry basket.

So you’re ready to redecorate and redesign your bathroom. But dropping $20,000 on a deluxe spa retreat is light years away from what you can afford to spend. Here’s the excellent news: You don’t need mega-bucks to convert your bathroom into a relaxing, cool space. There are plenty of ways to renovate and redesign on a budget.

According to Remodeling Magazine’s Cost vs. Worth report, an average bathroom remodel costs around $10,500 while an upscale remodel is going to run you a hefty $26,000. However, if you do the work yourself and get creative, This Ancient Home estimates that you can do a remodel for $1,000 to $3,000, or even less, depending on how much you desire to change.

Moreover, updating or adding a bathroom to your home is a home improvement project that adds worth.

In other words, you’ll recoup a significant portion of costs when you sell your home, as much as 100%.

Determine how much you can afford to spend on your remodel to determine the extent of the changes you can make. If your budget is on the low finish (i.e. $1,000 or less), you’ll desire to stick to cosmetic changes, such as new fixtures or a new sink, and new paint. If you own more to spend, you can focus on larger changes, such as adding tile, a bigger shower, or a window. Again, it every depends on your budget.

If you’re planning to add a completely new bathroom or decide major changes need to be done to an existing bathroom, consider a home equity line of credit from

You can get approval within five minutes and get the funds within five days.

If you’d prefer to save up for your project, open a high yield savings builder account with CIT Bank. With interest rates up to 1.80%, you’ll be capable to save up for your project and earn a nice return on your balance.

So what can you do to save money on your bathroom redesign or remodel?

Small bathroom ideas

Select furniture and accessories wisely

Image credit: Tim Young

Bring a nostalgic touch to the bathroom by upcycling a narrow console table to incorporate a little basin.

Space-saving wall-mounted taps provide a tidy solution. The more of the floor you can see, the more spacious your bathroom will feel, so go for a freestanding basin unit.

Plus, you can pop a few baskets underneath if you’re short on storage space.

Be clever with glass

A walk-in shower with frameless panels looks barely there in this bijou bathroom. The bath is smaller than standard, but perfect for kids. White marble for the wall tiles gives the little space a dash of glamour.

1. Make it appear larger with mirrors

Image credit: Richard Gadsby

Mirrors can completely convert the glance and feel of a room, as they reflect light and create the impression of space.

It’s a grand trick that interior designers use every the time. Whether you hang a mirror on the wall or go for adventurous mirrored tiles, the reflection is guaranteed to brighten your bathroom.

Loved these small bathroom ideas? READ: 13 little bedroom ideas – to create a space that is large on style

. Make space beneath the eaves

Image credit: Brent Darby

Compact fittings are a large assist in awkward-shaped loft spaces. Don’t worry about trying to fit a bath – go for a luxurious glass shower enclosure instead. It’s common with loft conversions and attics to box in parts of the room that own a reduced ceiling height for storage.

But instead, why not glance at ways to work around the reduced heights?

A toilet or basin is a brilliant idea.

Make use of an awkward corner

Image credit: Colin Poole

If you don’t own a space tall enough for a shower in your bathroom opt for a freestanding bathtub with a bath shower mixer tap. It’s the perfect excuse to spend your evenings lounging in the bathtub. If you’re short on storage a bath tray will not only glance Instagram ready, but hold your bath time supplies within simple reach.

. Own recessed shelving built in

Image credit: David Parmiter

Recessed shelves are a grand space saver, both practically and visually, keeping toiletries tidy and off the surfaces.

Building the shelves into untrue walls that hide pipework is a clever use of a necessary feature. Also consider recessed light fittings – either spot or linear.

Make the most of a sloping roof

Image credit: Brent Darby

Use every inch of an attic space by building a bath into the eaves. If you own an awkwardly shaped ceiling – love this loft bathroom – turn it into a decorative feature.

Paint the ceiling white to contrast with the statement wallpaper behind. It’s a grand way to add character in a confined space.

Consider adding a skylight, if possible, to open up your bathroom and create a light and airy space.

White furnishings will assist to bounce light around the room, meaning you can inject personality with a few exciting accessories.

Your bathroom lighting is key. Include task lighting next to mirrors and dimmable options in alcoves or behind a bath to create drama and mood. Make certain every light fittings own the correct IP rating for safe use in wet areas.

Stay inline

The ancient green striped wallpaper was stripped out of this room and replaced with brilliant tongue-and-groove panelling painted in white and repeated on the bath panel for a streamlined approach.

The ancient carpet was swapped for an industrial-look lino flooring, which is 
more hygienic and pleasing to the eye.

Furnish to scale

Image credit: Lizzie Orme

Large items of furniture can dwarf a little room so always purchase pieces that suit the scale of your space. In a little bathroom, stick to the basics of a vanity unit and storage rack that you can either hang on the wall or relax on the edge of a bath. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t pack on the personality. Paint a vanity unit in your favourite colour and opt for patterned tiles on the floor.

Be a shape shifter

Image credit: David Giles

These hexagonal tiles add interest without overwhelming this little room with pattern.

The owners own used hexagons in the porch and kitchen, too – as a subtle link through the house.

3. Put a shelf for storage above panelling

Image credit: Matt Cant

Tongue-and-groove panelling visually frames the bath and the handy shelf at the top acts as a mantelpiece to a host of trinkets, toiletries and accessories. The eau de nil colour is a relaxing choice for the bathroom, and adds interest to this compact space.

. Invest in made-to-measure fittings and fixtures

Image credit: Veronica Rodriguez

A well-thought-out design can fit every the essentials into as little as two square metres for a bathroom and even less for a shower room.

The key is not to squeeze too much in.

If you only own a little space, it’s much better to make a focal point of a walk-in shower or a beautiful bath, rather than ending up with a cramped bathroom.

2. Make your bath the star

Image credit: Polly Eltes

Go for a freestanding bath – it can work really well as a focal point in a little space. They’re not every as large as you ponder and you can even purchase smaller versions that will fit into tighter spaces.

Add a beautiful stencil on the wall above to draw the eye up and create the illusion of space.

Ponder love an expert

Image credit: Colin Poole

Architecturally and visually, it is best to hold a little bathroom feeling open by not crowding too numerous things into it. Edit your amenities often, hang your towels on bars or hooks, hold pattern to a minimum, and generally, make it simple. The room will feel bigger if you use a pedestal sink rather than a bulky vanity, a clear glass door rather than shower curtain and reflective surfaces such as glossy ceramic tiles in a large scale.


Distract from the size with feature wallpaper

Image credit: Rachael Smith

Wallpaper will make a statement in any room and the bathroom is no exception. A downstairs cloakroom is a prime space to use wallpaper, as bathrooms with a shower or bath will require specialist paper to prevent steam damaging it. Opt for a unique, bold or exciting print to maximise the impact in a little space love this. Fit a sheet of Perspex as a splashback behind the basin to prevent water damaging the wallpaper.

2. Decorate with a unused white scheme

Image credit: Tim Young

Make a compact bathroom feel more spacious by sticking to a simple all-white scheme. Team a white suite with glossy wall tiles and plenty of plush textured towels to ensure the space feels welcoming rather than cold.

Use clever paint effects to create an illusion of height

Image credit: Polly Eltes

Paint halfway up a wall to create an illusion of height. By lowering the eye with a darker paint shade you create a distance from the upper portion of the wall. If the wall was every one colour the room wouldn’t own as much depth. This clever, yet simple paint trick is a grand way to make a little space appear larger than it really is.

. Stick to a monochromatic palette

Image credit: Oliver Gordon

Keep to a monochrome scheme and add colour, texture and pattern with out-there accessories. White will open up a bathroom love no other colour, making it feel as spacious as possible.

White tiles and black grouting can be a winning combination in a little bathroom.

. Reposition your shower valve

Image credit: Colin Poole

Where space is tight, opt for an over-shower bath that delivers the best of both worlds. Rather than positioning your shower against the short side of the bath, attempt placing it along the longer side for a more luxe feel. Use a bold tile design around the bath to contrast with the relax of the room.

Create the illusion of space with an oval bath

Image credit: Chris Snook

Don’t bashful away from including a freestanding bath in a little bathroom. An oval bath cuts corners to boost the impression of space. A shallow shelf to hide waste pipes is also handing for adding additional surface space to display bath salts and plants.

. Work in a wet room

A wet room can make the most of a little space and add worth to your property. If you’re converting an attic, consider a wet room instead of a bathroom. It’s a grand way to make the most out of a little space and when it’s beautifully finished love this designer-style one, it’s stunning.

Ventilation is key as a build-up of moisture could lead to condensation and damp problems, so install a excellent extractor fan.

Diy bathroom ideas on a budget

Underfloor heating doesn’t take up any space but will add warmth and assist to dry surfaces quickly.

Hold it simple

Image credit: David Cleveland

If you’re in a quandary over how to decorate your little bathroom, just hold it simple with soft, natural shades. Select furniture and accessories with clean lines and hold the room as clutter-free as possible to create a feeling of space.

Work in a wall-mounted unit

Image credit: David Giles

Wall-mounted modular furniture remains a favourite for storage, due to its fuss-free, streamlined glance.

Diy bathroom ideas on a budget

Available in a range of heights, widths and depths, it means that you can create semi-bespoke furniture that best suits your space.

You’ll discover a wide range of colours, from soft hues to strong courageous tones, available too, as well as plenty of diverse textures.

Factor in a slipper bath

Image credits: Tim Young

If you can’t squeeze a standard roll-top bath into the bathroom, consider a shapely slipper bath – numerous come in short versions and they’ll let you relax your back in style.

And if you crave traditional fittings in little space, the latest roll-top baths are available in smaller dimensions.

Trick the eye with tiles

Image credit: Paul Raeside

The quantity of space you own and what the eye perceives aren’t necessarily the same thing. Frolic with the boundaries of perception by tiling the side of your bath and the wall with the same design – it makes it hard to distinguish where each begins, thereby making your space feel larger.

Marble is particularly effective here, as it looks almost love one huge sheet and the individual tiles aren’t extremely obvious.

Want bathroom storage inspiration?

READ: Clear the clutter with clever bathroom storage solutions

Use the same tiles on the floor and walls

Image credit: Polly Eltes

A clever trick to making a little bathroom glance bigger is to use the same tiles on the walls and the floor. ‘Use wall panels or matching floor and wall tiles in large-scale sizes for a seamless look,’ suggests Nicky Taha, Visual Stylist,

Not only does the natural rock in this family bathroom add a spa-style touch, but the continuous run of tiles creates a spacious feel, along with the wall-hung fixtures that save on floor area.

If natural rock feels too neutral, you can easily pep it up with strong colour pops with your towels, storage and accessories – an on-budget way to add personality to your bathroom.

Want to know which colour to paint your bathroom?

READ: Upgrade your space with these bold bathroom colour schemes

Wallpaper a cloakroom

Image credit: Colin Poole

One of the best ways to disguise a little bathroom is to create interest and a striking wallpaper is ideal for this. If you own a bath or shower in the room (rather than it being a cloakroom), make certain you purchase one that’s made specifically for bathrooms, which will manage with the damp, warm conditions.


Accessorise white with black or blush

Image credit: David Woolley

If you don’t own the budget to give your entire bathroom a makeover, accessories will do wonders for a compact space. Select a theme – monochrome is bang on trend and simple to implement, or you could select blush tones for another up-to-the-minute look.

Apply the style of your chosen trend to lighting, mirrors, smaller accessories and soft furnishings and instantly convert the space.

Purchase freestanding and multi-functional furniture

Image credit: David Brittain

A limited footprint shouldn’t impact on your creative flair. If your bathroom is verging on the little side, consider using freestanding furniture that you can move around at a moment’s notice.

Going for freestanding storage and seating allows you to move your scheme around whenever you love and, unlike fitted bathroom units, you can take freestanding pieces with you when it’s time to move out.

Invest in tall tiered storage

Image credit: Trevor Richards

Freestanding pieces are a godsend in little spaces. Tiered wire storage keeps luxuriously packaged lotions and practical wash bags on show and simple to grab. If space is limited, you can take the stand from bedroom to bathroom when needed.

Add a hint of colour to a white suite

Image credit: Colin Poole

While a white bathroom suite is the best choice for opening up a little space, it can sometimes feel a little stark if the whole room is white.

That’s why a hint of colour on the walls is the perfect compromise: light enough to create an airy feel, but with bags more character.

Here, the storage alcoves were built from tongue-and-groove panelling, then painted in white to contrast with the raspberry walls and striking cobalt-blue tiles.

. Characterise with colour

Image credit: Matthew Williams

This compact modern bathroom uses a number of techniques to create genuine wow factor, despite the little square-footage. Add a hearty dose of colour to inject vibrancy and personality into a white bathroom otherwise at risk of feeling clinical and characterless.

Diy bathroom ideas on a budget

A bright yellow ceiling and shower screen give this little bathroom a genuine focal point, while downlighters and white tiles hold the space feeling light and bright.

. Fit a sunken bath

Image credit: Brent Darby

If you’re renovating your bathroom or en suite, consider installing a sunken bath. Provided you own the space for it under your floorboards, a sunken bath will streamline your bathroom, giving it a luxurious, hotel-style feel.

Tile halfway up the wall

Unsure how to tile a sloping ceiling?

Then attempt tiling halfway up the wall. It’ll save on tiles and make the space feel larger. Select a dark neutral tile and paint the ceiling above it white to maximise brightness from roof lights.

Looking for more little bathroom ideas? Why not create a shower room? READ: Shower room ideas to assist you plan the best space

Mount your taps to the wall

Image credit: Perrin & Rowe/@simplyscandikatie

. Be brilliant with furniture

Image credit: Rachael Smith

Make the most of space in compact bathrooms and opt for a tallboy unit that reaches up to the ceiling for maximum storage.

Select a mirrored unit that will give the illusion of space to a compact bathroom.

Work with the bathroom you’ve got

The first law of renovating any room on a budget is to salvage whatever you can from the current design.

Diy bathroom ideas on a budget

This could potentially save you £££s in replacing items that are serviceable but just need a little TLC. However, don’t hold something if it will own a cost impact in another way. For example, it might be cheaper to replace a whole bathroom suite than attempt to discover replacements to match one another.

The most significant thing though is to attempt to maintain the existing plumbing layout if possible. Hold the waste and water inlets as they are and attempt to put sanitaryware accordingly to hold plumbing costs below.

Acquainting yourself with the rudiments of bathroom plumbing can assist you make the correct choices for your budget, too.

Inexpensive Bathroom Remodeling Ideas

Update Fixtures

Next, glance at the little details. You can update light fixtures, sink faucets, towel racks, and drawer pulls for a relatively little investment. These items may seem insignificant, but updating them can make a large difference in your bathroom’s glance. Check out sites love for ideas. The items may be out of your price range but you can discover ways to replicate the glance for less.

Keep in mind that you don’t always own to purchase towel racks at a home improvement store or IKEA.

One of my friends used ancient plumbing for her towel racks and it gave her bathroom a extremely cool, industrial feel. Plus, since she rescued them out of an ancient home that was about to be torn below, they were free!

Limit Your Tile

Tile gets expensive, especially when you hire a contractor to lay it every out for you. To save money, limit the quantity of tile and focus on high-impact areas love the floor (instead of the floor and inside the shower stall walls).

Alternatively, you could tile one horizontal strip along the wall and paint the rest.

If you’ve got your heart set on tile that’s artistic and expensive, use it as an accent alongside a cheaper tile. Not only will the artistic tiles be more noticeable, but you’ll save a ton of money by only using a few here and there.

Purchase Used

You can also save money on fixtures, even toilets and showers, if you purchase them used. Scour sites love eBay and Craigslist or head over to the nearest Habitat for Humanity ReStore, which specifically sells home necessities such as doors, mirrors, sinks, toilets, and tubs.

Another grand put to glance for upcycled bathroom accessories is Etsy.

What can you discover there? You’re only limited by your imagination. For instance, one Etsy artist takes brightly colored vintage Tupperware and turns them into cool hanging lamps. These could be enjoyment and funky hanging in a bathroom! Another Etsy artist creates awesome, upcycled metal shelving that looks love a check mark. These could be enjoyment for stacking folded towels. You can easily discover upcycled bathroom accessories on Etsy by searching with keywords love “bathroom” or “upcycled.”

Redo, Don’t Purchase New

Replacing your ancient tub or shower is going to cost you a beautiful penny.

Diy bathroom ideas on a budget

Instead, own it professionally relined, which is much cheaper.

However, don’t attempt this with sink and shower fixtures as it costs more to refinish them than to replace them. Refinishing these fixtures is more expensive because extremely few people decide to do it unless they own ancient, vintage pieces, and contractors who offer this service often charge a premium price.

However, let’s tell you do own some vintage bathroom fixtures or an ancient tub you don’t desire to get rid of.

The excellent news? You can refinish them yourself if they’re made of porcelain, cast iron, or fiberglass. That said, it takes time and some investment. A basic DIY refinishing kit will run you between $100 and $150, but you’ll also need additional supplies such as a sander, a spray gun, face masks, paint brushes, etc.

Diy bathroom ideas on a budget

You can see a excellent, basic tutorial for DIY refinishing at HGTV.

Save on Counter Tops

A favorite trend is to splurge on granite countertops. Because the bathroom counter is so little, the investment is often fairly low compared to what you’d spend on kitchen counters, for example.

So how can you save here? First, glance at the color. Neutral colors love tan, brown, and light beige are more favorite, which means they’re more expensive. To save money, consider and price out a wider swath of colors.

Another way to save on granite countertops is to purchase a slab containing imperfections.

The more visible the imperfection, the cheaper the price will be. Hold in mind that your sink basin will take up a lot of surface area, so if the imperfection is located where the sink or faucets will be then you won’t see it anyway!

Right now, one of the biggest trends in bathrooms is also one that budget DIYers can tug off with style. The trend is using ancient dressers as sink pedestals. You simply cut out the top of the dresser to accommodate a sink insert, cut into or remove interior drawers as necessary, and cut holes in the back for plumbing. These “dresser sinks” can sell for thousands of dollars in retail stores, but you can easily make your own with a budget dresser, some patience, and the correct tools.

Freshen Caulk and Grout

Another often overlooked, yet significant detail, is grout and caulk. When this gets grimy, it gets unsightly. By simply cleaning the grout and adding straight, clean lines of caulk around the tub and sink, you can add sparkle for a mere few dollars. You might be surprised at what a difference this can make! Grout and caulk are both cheap, so this is a extremely inexpensive way to freshen up your bathroom.


If you don’t own a lot to spend, then repainting will be the cheapest and, perhaps, the most effective way to give your bathroom a new look.

Here’s a expression of warning, though.

It’s going to take more time than you ponder. Why? Your bathroom may be the smallest room in the home, but you’re going to own to paint slowly and gently around the window, the tub or shower, the sink, the mirror, the toilet, the switchplates, the wall corners, and the floor. This takes time and patience (and a excellent supply of painter’s tape), so make certain you hold this in mind when planning your renovation.

Another thing to consider is the moisture.

Since mold and mildew develop easily in a bathroom, and humidity and temperature change often, it’s a excellent thought to invest in high quality paint with a satin finish. You may also desire to go over the ceiling with a special bathroom paint that helps resist the growth of mold.

Go Green with Upgrades

When updating your bathroom, don’t forget to redesign with the environment in mind. Low-flow toilets, sinks, and shower heads will not only assist you conserve water, but they’ll also save you money.

Plus, water-saving shower heads and faucets often cost the same, if not less, than traditional ones. So you won’t own to spend money to save money here.

Buying used or repurposing materials is also excellent for the environment. In addition to searching sites love Etsy for upcycled upgrades, search for ideas and do them yourself. For example, it’s fairly simple to turn mason canning jars into soap dispensers. You can see detailed instructions on how to do it here.

Want another idea? Discover three cool, vintage tin cans. Drill the tin cans side by side into a 2 foot piece of ancient plank.

Then, drill the plank onto your bathroom wall (pictured under from laissezfaire). You now own a super cool way to store bathroom necessities love toothbrushes, toothpaste, combs and brushes, and Q-tips. You can even hold unused flowers in one of the cans!

You can also use vintage light fixtures, ancient pieces of barn wood for shelves, or an ancient mirror above the sink.

Diy bathroom ideas on a budget

Every time you use something ancient instead of something new, you’re probably saving money and reducing your consumption. Both extremely excellent things!

Don’t forget to give back too. Any items you take out of your bathroom can be donated to your local Goodwill or to a Habitat for Humanity ReStore.

Final Word

I’ve recently thought about redoing my own bathroom. My home was built in 1900 and I own one extremely little bathroom. Thanks to an unlucky paint color choice, the walls glance as if they were hosed below with Pepto Bismal.

In other words, it really needs some work and repainting is number one on my list.

After that, I’d love to upcycle some ancient wood or metal to create shelving above the toilet and next to the sink. The plumbing towel racks are also definitely going in.

What about you? Do you own any money-saving ideas to redesign or redecorate a bathroom?


If you are trying to design a new bathroom while keeping a realistic eye on the budget, there is far more to consider than the costs of a new bathroom suites, fittings, decor and labour.

There are lots of ways of getting the glance of a luxury bathroom, without paying top-end prices.

Here, we cover everything from replacing sanitaryware to working with what you already own in put to cut costs.

Read our guide to planning and designing a new bathroom to get yours just right.