cost of major bathroom remodeling in SF Bay Area

dwlaw8August 28, 2006

I just bought a house in the South Peninsula of the Bay Area. I'm thinking of a complete remodeling of the master bedroom,

replace shower stall with frameless glass and cultured stone

replace countertop with culture stone

custom-made vanity cabinet

new floor tiles, toilet, exhaust fan and fixtures

replace window

other wall areas will be painted

There's no bathtub in the bathroom which is not that big (8' x 10').

I got a bid of $17K from a contractor. Is this in the right ballpark? Has anyone in the SF Bay area done something similar?

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A friend of mine in Palo Alto redid her small tubless bath from the subfloor up for $25K - travertine shower, granite counter, new mirrors and lights. So $17K sounds pretty reasonable.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   August 28, 2006 at 10:35PM
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That actually sounds a little low, depending on the details (the size of the custome vanity, for instance), since you are essentially building a new bathroom. Do you know the GC? I'd definitely get some other bids, and check references for anyone you consider hiring.

I've done many kitchen and bath remodels in the BA as a sideline from my industrial work, the last one being about 10 years ago, and that price seems about right for then. If the GC does good work and has good references, it sounds like a great deal.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2006 at 1:00PM
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Sounds like a good price - but I'd reconsider the cultured stone, since its on the list of things people typically want to replace, not install.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2006 at 3:46PM
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In response to mom1993's comment that "people typically want to replace, not install", do you mean people actually don't like culture stone shower stall?

The shower stall is old and using tiles. So I'm thinking of cultured stone because it looks nicer and is easier to clean. But if you think people would prefer to replace cultured stone shower stall with something else, I'd like to know why.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2006 at 6:45PM
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Hi dw,
We should talk! I'm in the south bay too, and doing a bathroom remodel. Just in case we need help for each other or to cross references, or whatever. :)

I think your bid of $17k is low. $20k-$30k is typical for a complete remodel inside.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2006 at 12:57PM
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I'm on the peninsula too, and I doubt that the contractor can make any money at that price, especially if you chose nice fixtures. That bid probably assumes no change in plumbing and contractor grade fixtures and materials, so if you're not particular, or the house is a rental or something, it might be possible.
I recently got a bid of 30K for a completely new bath in an older tract on the Peninsula. I did the room for around 15K, but I'm a designer living with an electrical contractor and we called in some favors and did much of the work ourselves. Of course it is quite luxurious.....
As for the cultured stone, I did use it sparingly, with beautiful results as a deck around my soaking tub where real marble was impossible, but If you intend to use it entirely throughout the bathroom, have someone with a very good eye for color choose it. I could recommend a company on the peninsula, but I don't know if we're supposed to name businesses in this forum. Be careful. IMHO, one can easily cheapen the look of an otherwise nice bathroom with cultured stone. That's why people tear it out and replace it with tile.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2006 at 10:22PM
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IMHO I have found that people take out cultured stone to put in tile, marble, granite etc. Both cultured stone and corian seem to be very out of favor - although engineered stone (caesarstone, zodiaq, etc.) is not. If you are going to got thru the time and money to redo your bath - use the nicest materials you can. Go to a few open houses in your area and see what they are using in updated baths.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2006 at 2:50PM
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Sounds a little low to me, but if the contractor has good references, could be a great deal. By all means, get competitive bids.

How are they replacing the window? There's three ways to do it, and the easiest/cheapest isn't the recommended one.

Where on the Peninsula are you? Cultured stone can be fine in Daly City but not so good on resale in San Carlos. However, we got cultured granite for our shower (my DH and I both loathe tile) and everybody thinks it's Corian, although it's shinier than Corian so to me it's easy to tell the difference. If you're not reselling anytime soon, you will find the upkeep on cultured stone to be very minimal -- it is a breeze to clean and we would definitely do it again.

Good luck with whatever you choose to do!

    Bookmark   September 2, 2006 at 6:12PM
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Also a mid-Pen resident and I agree with the general comments about price and about cultured stone. That said, the Bay Area encompasses a broad area, and what's considered inappropriate in Hillsborough may be perfectly acceptable in Hollister.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2006 at 3:03AM
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That's funny jkom51, cultured marble in Daly City, I just sold my house in Daly City and bought an Eichler in Castro Valley and it had,,,,,, cultured marble in the shower!
17k is on the low end of a quality remodel, it can be done by workers with warehouse materials. 20-25k is average for quality remodels. I just completed a concrete countertop for a 75k bathroom remodel.


Here is a link that might be useful: My web page

    Bookmark   March 18, 2007 at 2:02AM
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What you list is not a complete bath remodel. It is what you think a complete bath remodel is. Big difference!
I see no mention of plumbing in this list. No mention of electrical. Didn't the contractor bring this up? In NY when you remodel a bath you need to run new electric to the bath. It can't share circuits with another room.
Makes good common sense even if it's not code. With 1600 watt dryers, and the slew of other devices plugged in the bath should have at least two dedicated lines.
What about the plumbing? How old is it? Are you going to leave old copper in the wall? The old waste pipes staying? Over time these iron pipes clog up. A two inch pipe might have a half inch opening in it over time.
More info in the post will leave you better informed with answers. And fewer surprises when the contractor informs you that the plumbing is shot and should be replaced.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2007 at 9:40AM
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Did you end up getting you bathroom remodeled? Which contractor did you go with? Any complaints?

    Bookmark   March 17, 2008 at 9:45PM
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we are want to refinish our bathroom tub has anyone had recent experience with any co.s doin this?cost etc its typical 5 ft tub. and is it better to do sink or replace it
chip. oh live in fremont area

    Bookmark   July 15, 2010 at 1:06AM
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