Summary: In this renovation and remodeling podcast, Joe DeMarco of Perry Brothers Construction helps you understand everything you need to consider when determining the cost of remodeling a half bathroom. From the selection of different grade building materials and fixtures to the labor you’ll need to hire, having an overview of the different costs helps you plan an accurate and thorough bathroom remodel budget.

Joe DeMarco: Hi, I’m Joe DeMarco, general manager of Perry Brothers Construction, a general contractor servicing Massachusetts and New Hampshire. On today’s residential construction podcast, we’re going to be talking about the costs involved when remodeling a small bathroom, otherwise known as a half bath.

What Is Considered A Half Bathroom?

So what is considered a half bath? To me, a half bath would be a small bathroom, maybe in the range of 15 to 30 square feet, that is going to primarily have a toilet, a vanity with a sink, and maybe some sort of closet or shelving space that’s going to be used to store amenities and different bathroom supplies. 

There usually won’t be any shower or tub in a half bathroom. And these half baths, they’re conveniently located. Usually, maybe, by the living room. You could have a half bath in the basement, anywhere where you’re going to plan on entertaining guests, or whatever. You might put a half bath in there.

They’re not used for bathing purposes. You’re not going to be able to wash your hair, take a full shower in there. Half baths being smaller in size, are naturally going to cost less to remodel than, say, a master bathroom. 

Main Factors That Influence Half Bath Remodel Costs

The main factors that influence a half-bath remodel would be, for example, definitely the scope of the work. So if you’re planning on expanding your half bath into a full bath, changing the structural layout, or creating an addition to accommodate the extra space you need for your bathroom, that is going to cost more money just because you’re going to be needing more materials. 

The construction timeline is going to be a lot longer too. You’re going to require hiring labor for additional hours. 

So the scope of the work is huge when it comes to determining the cost.

You also got to think about the different types of bathroom remodeling materials and finishes that you’re going to be choosing. 

So, for example, something like stone flooring is going to be about $6 to $20 a square foot, but you could instead get vinyl flooring, which is recycled plastics and such, and that’s $2 to $7 a square foot. 

So maybe that natural stone is really beautiful and hits a place for you in the heart, but you’re probably better off getting the vinyl flooring just to save the extra space. 

But you also have to keep in mind the cost of the bathroom flooring you choose is normally not going to be a significant percentage of the overall cost of a bathroom remodel. 

The biggest things that are going to influence the cost of a bathroom remodel is really going to be fixtures like the vanity you choose, the toilet you choose.

In this case, we’re determining the cost of a half bathroom, so we’re not putting a shower or a tub in there. 

But a shower or a tub, you could be spending $200 to $8.5K on a bathtub, and $400 to $2K on a shower. You could spend up to $15K on a shower or a bathtub. You could get a walk-in shower or walk-in tub, a tub-shower combo. 

And all of these are going to have a very expansive range of pricing. Even a toilet, a toilet can go anywhere from $90 to $2,000 or more. 

You could maybe be getting a toilet that has a luxury bidet inside the bowl. It could have a heated seat. You could have a remote that opens the toilet seat on its own. 

There could be a low-flush, high-flush, or balanced-flush option. A lot of different toilets have different functional options.

For any type of bathroom remodeling material or your finish, there’s going to be different tiers of pricing and quality that you need to think about. So you need to balance being cost-effective with your need for luxury. And when doing that, you’ll be able to have a successful bathroom remodel that pleases not only you but also your wallet.

Other Costs And Considerations For Remodeling A Half Bath 

Some additional costs that you’d have to consider when remodeling a half bathroom would definitely be plumbing. A plumber’s going to range anywhere from $45 to $200 per hour. 

For a bathroom, a half bath particularly, you’re probably going to spend around $600 to maybe up to 2K for the plumber over the course of the entire remodeling project. 

If you’re installing a toilet that requires different plumbing allocations for the toilet to function properly, you’re going to need to have that plumber work more.

If you’re planning on converting a half bath into a full-size bathroom and you’re going to have a tub or a shower in there, you’re going to need the plumber to move plumbing lines to accommodate the fixtures for the shower. 

You probably are going to have to hire an electrician if you’re installing a new vanity, especially if this vanity is either A, going to go into a different spot in the bathroom than the previous vanity did or if the vanity has lights included with it that are in a different spot than the previous vanity’s lights. 

You’re going to need an electrician to move the wiring and to make sure everything is safely secured.

You’re also going to have to think about getting the necessary permits from your local building department to make your half-bath remodel successful. You’re going to have to think about getting all the rough and final plumbing inspections, electrical inspections, insulation inspection, the building inspection. There’s a lot of different inspections if you’re not aware of that.

And also, too, especially if you’re changing the layout of your bathroom, you’re going to have to hire an architect, which could be anywhere from $125 to $250 an hour. Maybe they might charge a flat fee of 300 to $400, probably even more than that. 

You might also need an interior designer who’s going to help basically lay out the entire bathroom and help you use your space the best that it can be used. An interior designer’s probably going to be around anywhere from $50 to $300.

And if you are making changes to the structural layout of your bathroom, you’re going to have to hire a structural engineer, and that’s going to cost you anywhere from $345 per hour to maybe $725 per hour. 

So if you’re making changes that require you to expand your space, you’re going to have to spend more money on these different bathroom remodel services that you’re going to need.

And also, too, just where you live, whether Massachusetts or New Hampshire, can also determine how much your bathroom’s going to cost just based upon how far away you are from suppliers for building materials. 

If you’re more in the city, you’re probably going to need specialized permits compared to if you’re in a small town. 

If you’re part of a condo association, there’s going to be a board of directors and other political figures that you’re going to have to go through to get the bathroom remodeled. 

If you live just on a home that you own, whatever, on your street, you obviously won’t have to go to a board. You are the board to allow you to remodel your bathroom. 

So all these different factors are really important to consider when determining the overall cost for a bathroom remodel.

How Much Does It Cost To Convert A Half Bath Into A Full Bath?

I would say the last thing I’d like to talk about would be how much would it cost to convert a half bath into a full bath. And when I define a full bathroom, it’s going to be a bathroom that accommodates either a tub, shower, or a tub-shower combo. 

I wouldn’t say a full bath accommodates both, that would be a master bathroom. So, in this case, we’re just going to say that this full bath is either having a tub, shower, or tub-shower combo. 

A rough estimate to convert a half bath into a full bath? That could be in the range of $10k to $30K, even more. There’s just going to be more work necessary. Again, when you’re setting up a shower or a bathtub, you’re going to have to make sure all your plumbing is allocated in the correct position to install your handheld shower heads and all the fixtures involved with the shower. 

You’re going to be tiling the shower area. You’re going to have to install niches there too.

If you are looking for some aging-in-place modifications, you might install a corner shower seat. There’s a lot of different things you need to consider when converting a half bath into a full bath because really one of the biggest factors that contribute to the overall cost of any bathroom remodel is the price of the tub or the shower. 

Those can vary in range because of the luxury options available, all sorts of prices. Super, super high-end to cheaper models that you could get out of the back of Home Depot.

Price Out Your Half Bath Remodel With Perry Brothers Construction

the perry brothers construction team

Thank you all for listening. I hope you have a greater understanding of the different costs you need to factor in to create a budget for your half-bath remodel. 

If you’d like to really deepen your understanding of half-bath remodels or bathroom remodeling in general, please feel free to call Perry Brothers Construction at (781)-233-7511 and our general contractor, he will promptly answer any of your questions or concerns. 

Thank you, guys and gals. Great having you. Have a good day.