Q: We have a good sized room in our house that we’d like to convert into a fully-equipped bathroom, but we want to be clever with the space. As we have never done this type of project before, what advice can you provide?
A: Creating a new bathroom in your house is an exciting project, but you need to do a lot of research and
planning before any building work starts. Although you may think this is just a bathroom, it is the only room in the house for which you need to commission so many trades – plumbers, electricians, plasterers, tilers and decorators.
You are dealing with a space where there is a lot of water and high moisture content in the air, which may affect the finish, decor and surfaces that you choose. Installing a mechanical extractor fan can help, which will allow you to get rid of most of the condensation. It’s a good idea to line all of your existing walls and floor with waterproof plywood boards to provide strength to the room, which will stop tiles and grout cracking over time through moisture and movement.
You will need to plan to the finest detail, visiting showrooms with a tape measure for sinks, bathtubs, shower trays, shower screens and towel rails. Before you buy any of these items, make sure you go back to the room you’re planning to convert and mark out exactly where each item will go.
You then need to pick the right fixtures. Make sure your plumber carries out a waterpressure test to ensure that you have adequate pressure for the type of taps and showerhead you’d like to use. Once you have all of these aspects in place, you’re on your way to understanding why even the smallest new
bathroom needs many big decisions.