7 Upgrades for a Basic Bath

Boring bath? Make basic even better with these easy and affordable DIY makeover ideas.

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Soothing Color Schemes

The right color palette has the ability to inspire tranquility. Transform your bathroom into a spa-worthy sanctuary with our favorite calming color schemes.

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Walk-In Shower Ideas

Find ideas to create a gorgeous walk-in shower in your bathroom.

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Easy Bathroom Vanity Upgrades

Turn a plain-Jane vanity into a custom creation with a few eye-catching add-ons.

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Rustic Bathroom Ideas

Rough surfaces, natural nuances, and weathered patinas combine with polished finishes and fashionable fittings in these 18 rustic bathrooms that are sure to inspire.

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Black and White Designs

Black and white bathrooms don't have to be boring, and these creative designs are here to prove it. Gain inspiration for your neutral space, no matter the size or style.

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Stunning Walk-In Showers

Find design inspiration in 15 walk-in showers that beautifully stretch a small bathroom's footprint, increase its functionality, and amplify its good looks.

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Assess Your Bathroom Remodeling Needs

Tips for deciding what changes you want and need to make in an existing bathroom and cost considerations.

Before rushing to draw floor plans and choose fixtures, step back and determine exactly what you want and need in a new bathroom. You probably already have general ideas, but the more thorough and specific you can be from the outset, the more satisfying the final results will be.

Start by taking stock of your present bathroom. Consider everything from surface materials to more fundamental issues such as layout and location. Perhaps new flooring, wall coverings, countertops, cabinetry, or fixtures would do the trick. Or maybe you'll need to rearrange the layout of an existing bathroom, add onto it, or create an entirely new one.

Sometimes a bathroom doesn't work well because it has too much space. This happens most often in houses that were built before indoor plumbing. When the outdoor privy came indoors, it often was placed in a bedroom or some other space that doesn't function as an efficient bathroom. These old-fashioned bathrooms may contain all the essentials yet look and feel awkward in actual use.

Wants and needs must always be balanced against the budgetary bottom line. If you're updating a bath to make the house more marketable, don't overdo it. You could lose money by overimproving (spending more than you can realistically hope to recover on resale) or by installing unconventional products or materials. If, on the other hand, you plan to live in your house for the next 10 years, indulge yourself a little.

Remember the trade-off strategy: By choosing, say, stock ceramic tile instead of specialty tile, you'll save money and retain a high resale value. Simple choices can save money that you can then spend on a feature you really want, such as a whirlpool tub, a marble vanity top, or deluxe shower hardware.

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