Author Topic: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.  (Read 653 times)

nyxst

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Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« on: December 01, 2019, 01:42:01 PM »
Hi all-
We only have 1 bathroom. I have drawn up some plans for a second bath, but haven't pulled the trigger yet for various reasons. The existing bathroom has a serious need for remodeling. It needs a window pulled out and some sill replaced because of rot. It needs an exhaust fan installed. It needs the walls stripped of existing mirror stick in tiles (floor to ceiling...ugh...) and there is a huge medicine cabinet recessed into the wall that is just trash. I'd have to remove that and patch the hole... I'm on a cement slab (no basement) and the pipes are pretty much set in stone for placement, so not a lot of flexibility to rearrange the plumbing. I would love to use some empty closet space that sits behind that bathroom wall and open it up a bit. I'm mostly afraid of the window. I don't have a lot of construction-type experience... I would want to take out the full size window, replace the rotten wood, and put in just a half window in the upper portion of where the window is now. (The window is IN THE SHOWER and is on the front of the house ... I can't imagine a design that could be worse ... Anyway. I have the tools. I am just missing the guts. Anyone here with input? It would be greatly appreciated! I almost want someone to say "hire a pro"... But I would rather not spend the money if I can do it.... I've done a lot of projects in the past.   I just don't know.

BudgetSlasher

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Re: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2019, 03:12:33 PM »
I, speaking for myself, would DIY the bathrooms. In fact my number 2 and 3 projects are to redo our 2 full baths (after insulating the basement).

But I am comfortable with basic HVAC, plumbing, and electrical. I would have to learn the shower water-proofing. My wife has gotten very good at designing rooms if she has a good guidance materials our last project was a kitchen she designed and I build. I build the cabinets from plywood, moved the plumbing and electrical, did all the tile work, installed the appliances, and on and on. So, all of those learned skills can transfer.

Can it be DIY'ed? Yes! Can you? Yes! How much will you have to learn? I don't know, "I've done a lot of projects in the past" doesn't say what kind of skills you have developed. Will it be cheaper to DIY? Yes, unless you make a major mistake have and to redo a lot of work. Will it be quicker than hiring a pro? Likely not, unless you have a lot more experience at take time off.

Papa bear

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Re: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2019, 03:32:57 PM »
Windows in the shower surround / tub surround were very common in older houses.  I’ve remodeled half a dozen of these and we’ve kept the window in them.

You can definitely DIY anything. None of this is rocket surgery here.  But with only 1 bathroom, what’s your contingency plans? Shit in a bucket? Sponge bathe out of your kitchen sink? Hopefully you have friends and family nearby!  This will take longer than you think or plan for.


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Papa bear

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Re: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2019, 03:35:18 PM »
To add for the window:

Tear out the old window, frame, everything. Replace with a vinyl window, waterproof sil, etc.  tile or surround up to the window, trim that out in vinyl. Caulk the seams.  Should last a long time.  Plastic is your friend.


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nyxst

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Re: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2019, 04:02:19 PM »
I don't know, "I've done a lot of projects in the past" doesn't say what kind of skills you have developed. Will it be cheaper to DIY? Yes, unless you make a major mistake have and to redo a lot of work. Will it be quicker than hiring a pro? Likely not, unless you have a lot more experience at take time off.

I have installed a dishwasher (I didn't do the electric, but I got everything ready for my electrician friend to finish up) but I did the plumbing... My kids and I had to remove the counter and sink in order to do it, so it was a good weekend-long project.  I installed a new front door threshold be cause the old one was cracked .. I put in a pergo floating floor throughout the house and a tile entryway... Did a lot of drywall work and trim and whatnot.... Mostly superficial stuff.  I think I could easily do most of the work... I am nervous about the window and about the exhaust fan, as they are holes to the outside world :) I would need the window and exhaust fan to be a weekend project. I want to do it this spring, so I will be doing a lot of winter research.... Sort of starting here! I was also considering trying to get the second bath installed before redoing the first ... I feel like that would take all the pressure away of getting it done fast enough. It's a small house with three people in it, so it's important to have a working bathroom! Neighbors are nice, but that's just weird :)

Linea_Norway

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Re: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2019, 03:05:45 AM »
I don't know, "I've done a lot of projects in the past" doesn't say what kind of skills you have developed. Will it be cheaper to DIY? Yes, unless you make a major mistake have and to redo a lot of work. Will it be quicker than hiring a pro? Likely not, unless you have a lot more experience at take time off.

I have installed a dishwasher (I didn't do the electric, but I got everything ready for my electrician friend to finish up) but I did the plumbing... My kids and I had to remove the counter and sink in order to do it, so it was a good weekend-long project.  I installed a new front door threshold be cause the old one was cracked .. I put in a pergo floating floor throughout the house and a tile entryway... Did a lot of drywall work and trim and whatnot.... Mostly superficial stuff.  I think I could easily do most of the work... I am nervous about the window and about the exhaust fan, as they are holes to the outside world :) I would need the window and exhaust fan to be a weekend project. I want to do it this spring, so I will be doing a lot of winter research.... Sort of starting here! I was also considering trying to get the second bath installed before redoing the first ... I feel like that would take all the pressure away of getting it done fast enough. It's a small house with three people in it, so it's important to have a working bathroom! Neighbors are nice, but that's just weird :)

Making an exhaust fan should not be difficult. My DH made that in our previous bathroom. That is just drilling through the wall, while avoiding drilling through electricity wires.

Yes, in worse case, you could use a bucket lined with a plastic bag. But you don't have to do the whole bathroom at the same time. Just keep the toilet working while you do the window (of hiring someone to do the window).

affordablehousing

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Re: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2019, 11:37:25 AM »
Are there some other windows elsewqhere in the house you can replace first to practice? You also didn't mention what siding you have, which can make window replacement a lot harder or easier. Watch a ton of videos, and come up with a way you can flash your window.

lthenderson

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Re: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2019, 01:12:27 PM »
Anyone here with input?

I've remodeled probably around ten bathrooms over the years with no special training other than Youtube. It isn't hard work and if you have the tools, it is a good project to DIY and save money. Some tips I have done myself. Leave the toilet in as long as possible. I usually cut the flooring away around the edge of the toilet and let it sit there up until the day I am installing the new flooring. It is more work having to work around a toilet and being careful not to chip the porcelain but it allows you to keep a functioning toilet for all but one day if you play your cards right. Although not as convenient, for situations like this, it might be better to tackle one wall at a time versus gutting everything and slowly rebuilding it. Remove the mirror tile and medicine cabinet and fix drywall while keeping everything else functioning. Once done, turn sights to a different wall. It takes longer this way but it is less of a convenience when you it is your only bathroom. Leave enough time at the end of the day to clean up the mess so you can use it during the evening hours without risking serious injury.

Jon Bon

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Re: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2019, 01:55:22 PM »
So here is a vote for DIY.

You are not going to be able to find guys..... Maybe if you hire a GC and pay him 25k to renovate a bathroom you could get it done. But if you try and find your own: Plumber, carpenter, siding/flashing/window, drywaller, painter, etc.

It is just NOT going to happen. The economy is good out there, guys have more work than they need. They have dependable customers that they win 100% of the jobs the bid and make a good living. Why would they bid on this random guy that finds them on the internet?

Trust me on this, the past 4 years my projects have been so much DIY it annoys the crap out of my. I cant find guys. The only ones I use are the ones I have established long term relationships will.

The guys that are left are the ones basically that you dont want, tear stuff apart then ghost you. No one cares about getting your bathroom finished as much as you do.




middo

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Re: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2019, 02:01:45 PM »
My vote is DIY, but I would also suggest you do the second bathrion first.  It takes the pressure off getting the toilet plumbed today, and the shower finished ny Monday.  It is also easier doing a new install than replacement in general, because there is less of the unexpected surprise factor.

I would also close in half the window as you suggested.  Get a good exhaust fan rather than use a window in the shower.

nyxst

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Re: Hire someone or DIY - bathroom.
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2019, 04:11:41 PM »
Thanks all! I think I'm going to do it! I have vinyl siding. I will see how I can budget around putting the second bath in first.... Time to crunch the numbers and start watching YouTube! I was thinking the same thing about contractors.... Anyone that I could get to do such a "small" job would probably be the bottom of the barrel. At least I care if it gets done, while they probably won't.