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Bathroom Upgrades That Can Add Value to Your Home

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Everywhere you look in your bathroom, there’s an opportunity to upgrade it for the better. Some changes can add to your personal comfort, some can add to your home’s marketability when you’re ready to sell, and others can add lasting value to your property. Before undertaking any remodeling project, it’s a good idea to consult a trusted real estate agent who knows your area. He or she should be able to tell you if what you’re planning is appropriate for your market, and if you’re likely to get a good return on your investment. 
 
WALLS
 
Replace old (or unwanted) wallpaper with a fresh coat of paint!
 
Special options to consider:
  • Anti-microbial paint could help protect bathroom walls from the mold and mildew growth that’s common in humid places.
  • A semi-gloss finish is typically recommended for bathrooms, since it’s more durable and washable than matte.
  • If you do decide to install new wallpaper, look for waterproof or antifungal options.
Selling soon? Stick with neutral tones like beige, gray or taupe. You’ll want potential buyers to be able to imagine themselves in the space, and that's easier if they don't have to look past distracting patterns or colors. If the bath is too boring, you can always add color in your choice of linens, bath mat, curtains, etc.
 
FAUCETS
 
Ditch outdated fixtures in favor of new, name-brand faucets. Moen, Kohler, American Standard, Pfister and Delta are just a few of the top brands, and it’s very likely you’ll find something that fits the look you want and your budget.
 
Special options to consider:
  • Water-saving features are always a plus. Look for the EPA’s WaterSense label.
  • Touch (or touchless) technology can add to your faucet’s ease of use and may help limit the spread of germs in your bathroom. Tap a touch-activated faucet with an elbow or forearm, and you won't end up with a messy handle. Wave your hands below a touchless faucet, and the motion sensor will keep the water running while you need it and shut it off when you don't.
Selling soon? Choose something with clean lines and a traditional finish. Overly stylized, statement faucets may have a more narrow appeal to homebuyers than the classics.
 
SHOWER HEADS
 
There’s a wide range of shower heads available on today's market, designed to meet a variety of shower tastes. Depending on how much you’d like to budget and how much you’re willing to change in your bathroom, you may choose from single- or multi-headed fixed showers, rain showers, body sprays or handheld shower heads.  
 
Special options to consider:
  • Water-saving shower heads can deliver a high-pressure shower experience using much less water than you’d expect.
  • Hand-held shower heads are a popular convenience, especially in homes designed for aging in place or handicap accessibility.
  • Rain shower heads are trending, and can add a bit of spa-like luxury to your bath.
  • Smart shower systems are available to help you tailor your shower experience, from controlling the temperature to reducing your water usage.
  • Need added relaxation? Some shower heads have color-changing LED lights for chromotherapy. Others have built-in Bluetooth speakers.
Selling soon? If you’re worried about your ROI, it’s probably best to select an option that doesn’t require tearing up your walls or tile (unless you’re planning to replace the tile or shower surround anyway).
 
LIGHTING
 
Lighting can dramatically change the look of a bathroom, but it’s important to keep functionality a top priority. A good mix of ambient, task and natural lighting can help you set the mood of the space while still delivering illumination where it’s most needed.
 
Special options to consider:
  • LED lighting is an energy-efficient choice.
  • Choose and properly place effective task lighting in the vanity area. If your mirror placement allows, consider side lighting or sconces to evenly light your face.
  • A smart lighting system can let you control light levels throughout the room.
  • Under-cabinet and in-toilet lights are available to help you navigate the bathroom in the dark.  
Selling soon? Good lighting has never been more important. Make sure all bulbs are working properly, and all lamps are clean. If you’re changing your fixtures, make sure you choose something classic that complements your plumbing taps and other hardware.
 
TOILET
 
Ready to make a larger change to your bathroom? Take the toilet. If you have an older model, you may be able to replace it with a much more water-efficient design—one with some bells and whistles you might not have heard of!

Special options to consider:
  • Two words: smart toilet. Some models offer everything from a seat heating, a slow-close lid, automatic (or remote control) flushing, bidet wash, and air dry, to self-cleaning and deodorizing, leak monitoring and emergency flushing during power outages.
  • Looking for something a little more low-key? High-efficiency toilets, especially dual-flush models, can conserve a significant amount of water on a daily basis.   
  • If you have the space and budget, consider isolating the toilet in its own small closet or behind a partial wall to add privacy.
Selling soon? A simple, high-efficiency commode is probably fine.
 
SURFACES
 
Good quality flooring, countertops, cabinets and tile can provide the room’s most obvious sign of value.
 
Special options to consider:
  • Popular countertops choices include granite, marble and engineered quartz.
  • Sink styles include under mount, pedestal and vessel.
  • Flooring should be water-resistant, easy to clean and durable.
  • Cabinets should provide ample storage so your countertops can stay clutter free.
Selling soon? Be sure not to cut corners on materials or craftsmanship when you plan your budget. Select neutral colors and simple styles.
 
TUB & SHOWER
 
There’s a lot of debate over the value of a master bath tub. Some homebuyers feel it’s a waste of space; others won’t buy a home without one.
 
Special options to consider:
  • Seating in the shower can be a nice feature for aging or mobility-limited residents.
  • A separate soaking tub is a spa-like touch, especially free-standing styles.
  • An attractive tile surround can enhance a bathing area.
Selling soon? It’s probably best not to make a major change, like removing a bathtub. But, if you do, improvements to the shower, such as expanding it to be a walk-in, could make the loss worthwhile.
 
“INVISIBLE” UPGRADES
 
There are many upgrades you can make that aren’t visible to potential buyers when it’s time to sell. If you choose to add them, you’ll need to point them out and explain their benefits.
 
Special options to consider:
  • A tankless water heater could save energy by heating water only when it’s used.
  • Heated floors: added comfort for cold mornings!
  • A soft water loop or water filtration system if you’re having hard water problems.
Selling soon? These are some great features that can increase your own bath experience (and may impress a select group of buyers), but they won’t necessarily add wow factor.
 
Not sure where to start? Call ARS®/Rescue Rooter® at 1-800-277-9400 today for a free consultation.   

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