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New and tips needed.

(58 Posts)
Drywhiteplease Mon 24-Feb-14 15:51:40

Am doing 2 bathrooms from scratch. I'm baffled by the choice and prices.
I need shower cubicles, baths, vanity units, wall mounted radiators, loos obv, mirrors that don't mist up.

What did you save/spend on?
Any tips?
What would you do differently and why?

Rummikub Mon 24-Feb-14 15:55:49

Plan my storage first! It's my big regret when had bathroom done.

HahaHarrie Mon 24-Feb-14 17:19:51

I'm watching this with interest, if we go ahead with the double storey extension, this could me.

If it was me I'd want...

Somewhere to hang up towels would be a start. So many houses we viewed had no towel rails.

Surface space, more than a toothbrush worth.

Separate shower and bath.

Mixer taps!

Good luck!

TheGreatHunt Mon 24-Feb-14 17:57:52

IKEA to a bathroom planner so start with that for layout ideas.

It's cheaper to keep things where they are so bear that in mind.

Have a think about storage - we have under sink cupboards and an extra cupboard.

Heating - radiator is good for towels as is underfloor heating.

Flooring - think about warmth under foot.

Do you want separate showers and bath in one room? Separate toilet? We kept the loo in a different room and much prefer as no smells when showering. Didn't put a walk in shower and bath in as we wouldn't use the room that way.

We sourced sanitary units in local bathroom stores (not b&q but specialise places). Much better quality that way.

Think about ventilation - do you need an extractor fan?

Type of shower - can your plumbing take a mains fed one or is electric powered your only option?

Pheonixisrising Mon 24-Feb-14 19:04:05

we put a shower in that had independent side jets as well as a monsoon shower , as I didn't want to wash my hair everytime I had a shower. put in the biggest bath I could have - bloody marvellous , just like a spa

used small local plumbing centre that looked like a trade plumbers - not a glossy showroom , get heated towel rails there too - they may give you a discount

find the tiles you like then search online for them , search ebay for mirrors

Drywhiteplease Mon 24-Feb-14 19:38:34

Ok....some of my friends from a fashion thread asked me so this is my spec;

I am having an extension starting the first week in May. I don't like last minute decisions so I want to decide soon.
I will have 2 bathrooms built (en suite 3645x1945 and main bathroom 3645x2245...the width can change but they are side by side so the length can't)

I want;

Shower cubicles with sliding doors 1200x900) hate drips on the floor

Decent shower (the type with rain and the hand held ) with the valves outside the enclosure I don't like getting into a cold shower and am sick of getting a wet arm

Towel rails 2 in the house bathroom so kids don't argue

Bath with wall mounted taps

Basin in a vanity with drawers only hate delving far back in cupboards and it all spilling out 1200 wide

Big mirrors with de-mister sick of using a squeegee

Inside the showers I want those alcove things for my bottles

Loo with a handle flush (Anni I'm with you on those bloody push buttons) and not built in so I can put Parazone tablet inside sisters, manic woman

Plugs with chain my pop ups have broken

Style wise I want contemporary classic. Not traditional, not too modern iykwim.

I'm very specific. I've been planning for years.

BUT the problem is we went to the Bathstore and they did great plans and the prices were incredible. Our builder, however, says not to use them because if something goes wrong then, because it's all sourced abroad, it's hard to find parts etc. DH has seen the price and is now expecting that. Where as I'm looking at better quality (but certainly not top range) and it's double the price.

PattyMcGinty Mon 24-Feb-14 19:55:18

We're doing our bathroom and have been told to buy German built. The Germans (apparently) build it well. The Italian (apparently make it look nice but don't build it so well. Avoid Chinese made as it's dreadful quality (apparently).

Our bathroom space is quite limited and I can't think of a reason why we'd want a regular sized basin as all we do in it really is clean our teeth and wash our hands and face (sometimes!). We're going to save on space by hopefully getting a slightly smaller basin.

TheGreatHunt Mon 24-Feb-14 19:56:55

Where are you looking? Try finding a local plumbing merchant for some stuff and ikea for others.

BobPatSamandIgglePiggle Mon 24-Feb-14 20:00:00

Get a toilet with no fiddly bits - ours has cut out indent things which collect dust and dh pubes they do my head in. Also toilet related - some modern ones have a kind pf shelf which catches poo (sorry) and needs to be scrubbed - I'd avoid that!

Fedupnagging Mon 24-Feb-14 20:07:10

We did our 2 upstairs bathrooms a couple of years ago-we spent weeks and weeks trailing round various stores looking at options. Once we had decided what we wanted, we ordered it all online which was so much cheaper. Sorry, can't remember the company.

The biggest expense was the tiles, inclu floor tiles. We purchased them from a local independent store and they cost more than everything else put together! However, they were well worth the expense as they look fabulous.

The push button flush on the toilets are fine but the waterfall tap, similar to this looks great, but shows the lime scale really easily. Also, it is difficult to easily control the flow of water - it's either a trickle or a tidal wave!

We got 2 powers showers from Mira when B&Q had an offer going but needed a pump to get the 'power' effect.

All this work took nearly 2 weeks and caused a huge amount of mess and dust throughout the whole house but we went on holiday and left ds1 in charge! Tbf my parents did come and stay for a few days and cleared up a lot but the dust lingered for ages.

Hope this rather long post helps.

redshoespurplehat Mon 24-Feb-14 20:32:13

hi - I'm trying to get my head around this. you have found what you want, and at a price you are happy with at Bathstore, but your builder wants you to spend more elsewhere 'just incase it goes wrong?' go with what YOU want from where YOU want to buy it! if it goes wrong, bathstore will surely be able to source replacements!! sounds like he's miffed as he hasn't been able to make a margin on supplying if you ask me!!

Drywhiteplease Mon 24-Feb-14 20:53:43

Bob thanks for that loo tip.....I will bare that in mind.
Reds I'm sorry! I think I phrased it wrong. We've used our builder a lot and I trust his advice. I asked him where he would recommend and he just told us to be wary of BS. He told us to go to a plumbing merchant where he gets a discount for better quality stuff. We are in our forever house and have been for 15 years. I want to do it right and with stuff that won't need replacing in 5years without breaking the bank.

frankincensemydear Mon 24-Feb-14 21:10:47

We spent on the shower cubicle and shower plus taps. We have a hansgrohe raindance shower which is great.
Tiles we got from tons of tiles.
We have these ikea hooks for bath towels over a radiator rather than a towel rail which works much better imo.
I also really like the extra lights we had put in beside the mirror.The only thing I would have done is have the main light switch moved to the wall outside instead of the hanging cord inside.

Drywhiteplease Mon 24-Feb-14 21:40:29

I'm making notes! Great tips.
frankincense love the shower and lights a lot. Can you link your other stuff, I like your style. Did you get a HGrohe shower valve thing too?

justasecond Mon 24-Feb-14 21:53:51

Hello Dry!
We have done a few bathrooms now over the years and my advice is go for best you can afford. We had a B&Q bathrooms which look fine at first but things start going wrong after a few years I really think its worth paying more for better quality.
We did our big bathroom about 18 months ago and the ensuite about 5 years ago. Both are modern but classic in style I don't like over designed taps and as someone else says the waterfall ones show the limescale really bad! I went for Hansgrohe, Keuco and crosswater taps and showers and Duravit, Villeroy and Boch and Keuco sanitary.
I have Duravit Starck 3 toilets in both and in fact went to the bathroom shop today to order another for our cloakroom to replace a B&Q one that was already in when we moved. They are very easy to clean and look good and have not had any problems with them. No awkward bits to catch dust or poo grin The lady in the shop said it was their most popular toilet.
I got the tiles from Porcelanosa, expensive but worth it plus there was a 40% promo when we got them. We got underfloor heating too but really its not needed, I have hardly ever switched it on.
I would also go for stainless steel towel rails rather than chrome which bubbles and rusts. We got ours online for a good price.
We traipsed around a lot of showrooms too then eventually ordered most of it online for less.

justasecond Mon 24-Feb-14 21:59:25

Those are nice Raydon I have similar ones beside my mirror too.

Just remembered you could get a mirror recessed in the tiles. We needed a really big mirror above a double sink which would have been ��� so I had a glazier came out and measure the exact size and fit it for a lot less. Looks really good.

Annianni Mon 24-Feb-14 22:49:27

Dry, I can't use loo blocks (in the cistern) anymore because the new loo instructions said not to sad

Something to do with all the stupid seals.

libertychick Mon 24-Feb-14 23:01:53

We did our bathroom about 2 years ago. This is not our forever house so we cut corners.

Splurged on pressure shower and decent showerhead, glass shower screen and wall tiles. And a nice mirror from John Lewis!

Saved on flooring (opted for lino as comfy underfoot and easy to clean). Also saved on bath, sink w cabinet and toilet - DH searched on line for several weeks and bought odd items from different ranges in similar styles (he has a good eye, I think only the very picky would notice) and got them really cheaply.

wonkylegs Tue 25-Feb-14 00:09:37

Duravit WCs are great, we also had a wonderful starck series basin from them in our old house both still looked & worked well 10yrs later.
Bath - we had a Kaldewei steel bath which again still looked brand new after 10yrs.
I will be going for similar sanitaryware in our new house.
I've had fitted loads of ideal standard and twyfords over the years with no problems. Cheap Chinese stuff is a bit more hit and miss. In a development with 80 ensuites we typically would have about 20 problem WCs, 5 problems with basins and 30 problems with taps or pop up plugs (usually corrosion). For me this is unacceptably high problem rate but sometimes the client wants the cheap stuff despite the fact it takes twice as long to sort it out and sometimes it only lasts half as well.

MrsCampbellBlack Tue 25-Feb-14 05:51:08

Oooh, handy - we're about to embark on major house renovations and am really stuck on bathrooms - also doing 2.

A friend has the duravit happy d range and I really like that - and have rather fallen in love with the fired earth marble retro tiles but suspect they'll push the budget sky-high. We also have to have a new boiler to fire the hot water as its currently provided by aga which is going.

Anyone else have a megaflo boiler and do they rate them?

I like the look of the shower.

Oh and my builder said he'd avoid a wet room as floor gets slippy and I have small children so to go with shower with tray and glass sides - any views on that?

Dry - I'm finding planning bathrooms a million times harder than new kitchen!

wonkylegs Tue 25-Feb-14 07:05:10

We just got a megaflo cylinder when we redid the heating system just before Christmas. It's brilliant, the showers are now hotel standard pressure and we coped with having 15 people for Christmas and never ran out of HW. It has also helped with getting decent pressure in our kitchen rather than the trickle we used to get. For us it was a bit of a faff as we had to get the lead main replaced to increase the mains water pressure enough to get one but tbh that wasn't a difficult job just an unexpected one.

santamarianovella Tue 25-Feb-14 08:50:49

I would recommend trying to get everything locally and from one source,if you can,try to get as many quotes and negotiate. The people who did the wardrobes,ended up,giving us a quote for our ensuite, and dc bathroom,it was more than what we planned on spending,but not sky high,and it meant we me,dh never bothers won't be the ones running around,

Yes to loo with handle flush,and never get those taps with ceramic. They look nice but they don't last.

If you are building from scratch go for Built in shelves for towels,they are a revelation,

I don't have one,but I always wanted a walk in shower with a bench grin
Ohh and shower niche too.

mrsCB we used fired earth ,before they are very good,I think the do promotions regularly.

myron Tue 25-Feb-14 11:05:50

Yes to megaflow pressurised water system. Our previous house had it and we installed it in our current house because we loved having high pressure water. We kitted out 3 bathrooms plus 1 cloakroom as part of a major building/renovation project so keeping to budget was key.

I splurged on the showers and shower doors. Looking back at my spreadsheet of costs, I actually sourced the shower at £540 each and shower sliding door for £449 each! These prices were from April/May 2012. The shower price was found online and I got my builder to match/beat it which he did. I sourced the 8mm glass shower doors from Bathstore (very easy to install according to my builder) directly during one of their many sale periods. Like many, I would have loved Matki showers and Laufen sanitaryware but simply couldn't afford it for 3+ bathrooms!

Sanitaryware were from Roca and Ideal Standard, Bristan taps - all from Plumbase. Open a cash account and you will get up to 40% off. Your builder's 15% discount isn't overly generous but obviously he needs to make his margins.

Tiles - I saved on these by visiting an independent local tile importer (local small city) whose prices definitely were 20%-30% better than Topp Tiles. Having a clear budget focuses your mind and limits your choice - we stuck to a neutral palette/simple white.

Demisted lighted mirrors - ebay is your friend. LED downlights, extractor fan to come on with the light switch, towel radiator with the summer switch. Instead of vanity units, we spent less money having a floor to ceiling cupboard and shelving made by the joiner (who was on site anyway) than vanity units would have cost. The joiner also built an alcove shelf in the shower walls for us.

We ditched the underfloor heating due to going over budget/future running cost/maintenance.

The more you buy from one supplier, the more likelihood that you can haggle a better discount. HTH

PoorOldCat Tue 25-Feb-14 11:15:39

Does anyone have Heritage stuff? Is it any good?

myron Tue 25-Feb-14 11:17:12

What I would have done differently had I thought about it at the time?
Not a regret as such since I didn't give it a thought until someone mentioned it above.

Stainless steel curved towel radiators - I have normal straight chrome towel radiators (I got sick of making decisions by then and couldn't care less about radiators at that point in time!)

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