Though bedrooms and living rooms are certainly fine places to unwind in, few will deny that showers have a uniquely relaxing power that no other home component can match. Unfortunately, old fixtures, dingy surroundings, and plumbing that simply don't work as well as it used to can have a detrimental effect on your daily shower, making it less of the pleasure it once was. If your daily shower has become a practice in dodging alternating streams of hot and cold water, watching loose tiles fall away from the wall, or any other activity that feels like more of a chore than a refuge, shower replacement has probably crossed your mind more than once.
One of the nicest things about upgrading bathroom spaces is that you can really make them function according to your own personal preferences, and in the current housing market, the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) says more homeowners are doing just that. In April of 2012, a NARI press release confirmed that " …homeowners are personalizing their space during a remodel as the tough housing market forces more people to stay, rather than move." While the national mindset before 2008 was typically to remodel with selling in mind, today the trend seems to be remodeling to make your existing home as accommodating to your own needs as possible.
1.Enhancing Form and Function
We're not going to lie to you: While it might not pull the same kind of numbers as a kitchen remodel or a swimming pool addition, upgrading showers and bathrooms can often boast a formidable price-tag.
When it comes down to it: Ancient showers that have seen a lot of use are typically not accommodating to either current or prospective homeowners. Bathroom technology has improved a great deal over the past few decades, and features like steam functions, multiple heads and water jets, and stand-alone showers that were rare 20 years ago are far more common today. Additionally, old bathrooms are notorious for wasting water and increasing utility bills, giving the environmentally conscious (as well as the wallet conscious) good reason to upgrade.
There's no way to list all of the options available for your new shower in a short article, but there is room enough for this bit of advice: Contractors who reside near you will know what fixtures and features look good longer and perform better in the long run when exposed to your area's unique environment. It's good to establish a firm budget before you hire a professional, but having a little wiggle room in your design idea will allow your contractor to offer suggestions that are proven winners.
2.Choosing a Contractor for Shower Replacement
There are a huge number of extraordinary bathroom contractors throughout the U.S., but there are plenty of less-than-extraordinary ones, as well. One of the best things you can do as a homeowner looking to hire is talk to three or more contractors well before the job is set to begin. If you happen to stumble upon three that all feel like a perfect fit for your needs, congratulations! However, it is far more likely that interviewing multiple contractors will result in finding one that clicks with you better than the rest. A contractor who you feel comfortable talking to and who has a record of good service to back up his or her reputation is a valuable commodity; even if the person you click with costs a little bit more than the others you've interviewed, those extra dollars are typically a wise investment.
3.Repair vs. Replacement
We're not going to lie to you: While it might not pull the same kind of numbers as a kitchen remodel or a swimming pool addition, upgrading showers and bathrooms can often boast a formidable price-tag. For those of us who want the simple pleasure of a perfectly functioning shower without breaking the bank, shower repair is probably the way to go. Obviously, repairing shower areas that are falling apart at the seams will cost more in the long run, but if your shower isn't standing on rotting wood or hiding massive water damage behind its walls, a small or moderate professional repair job could be the perfect fit.
In some cases, a few upgrades behind the scenes (like installing an instantaneous water heater) can greatly improve function without the additional cost of visual upgrades. Even if you are only interested in increased functionality, however, it is still a good idea to speak with several different contractors (and get quotes from each) before you settle on one.
However, if replacing the shower is still something that you want to do, follow our Shower Installation Guide to learn the ins and outs of installing a new shower.