bathroom remodel in stages?

violet99May 30, 2008

I'm a first time homeowner and so please excuse my ignorance. My condo was built in the 20s and we believe the whole place has plaster lathe walls that were more recently covered with plaster board. The bathroom is unbearably ugly but we haven't got the 10k+ to do the remodelling in one fell swoop. What if we had the walls and ceiling taken down to the studs, plumbing and electrical done then left it without proper walls until we could afford to have sheetrock and tile installed? If we left the floor until last and there was a problem with the subflooring, would we risk having to backtrack? I would appreciate any alternative suggestions that would help us to do it a couple grand at a time. (we're keeping the old tub and my husband can replace the sink and toilet himself.)

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Don't open up the walls until you can do the whole job.
And check your condo documents - you may not own the walls, just the surface.
If you open up the walls, you will expose the walls of your neighbor's condo, or the floor and ceiling framing of the condo above or below yours. There will be sound transmission, and their plumbing and electrial wiring. If the bathroom is on an outside wall it will be cold and drafty. It will also be dirty.
Perhaps you can make it look good with paint?

You can buy a new sink and a new toilet and install them, new faucets, new mirror, light fixtures and towel bars too. These can all easily moved and reused when you get to the walls and floor.

You will want to upgrade the electrical and the plumbing connections, repair any rot when you remove the walls. It is a major job which, to be done well, should be done all at once. Expect problems and unknowns. Budget extra money for disasters - they are lurking there, unseen and unknowable.

Your lathe and plaster walls help make your apartment quiet because they are heavier and thicker than plaster board. They are better quality walls than a plaster board wall. Consider saving them.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2008 at 5:24PM
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