The Ultimate Bathroom Renovation Cost Guide

Bathroom renovations are one of the most common types of home renovations carried out by Australians – but how much does a bathroom renovation cost? 

A bathroom renovation cost can vary significantly depending on the size of the room, as well as the costs for materials, labour, fittings and other expenses. These variables all play a key role in determining the total cost of any bathroom renovation project. 

In this comprehensive bathroom renovation cost guide, we will cover all the essential information and answer the most commonly asked questions you need answered when it comes to renovating your bathroom.

How much does a bathroom renovation cost?

The total cost of a bathroom renovation will depend on a number of variables. As a general rule, however, a bathroom renovation can be broken down into three primary price ranges: budget, standard, and premium. 

Let’s take a closer look at these three price ranges and consider just what to expect from each.


A budget-friendly bathroom renovation cost is between $5,000 and $15,000. In this price range, the outcome is primarily a cosmetic renovation and will cover a smaller bathroom size while using budget-priced materials and fittings. 

Budget renovations tend to leave all plumbing and electrics as they are, and instead focus on swapping out aesthetic items such as tiles, flooring, or adding a new shower or vanity to create a fresh, new look for a fraction of the cost of a full renovation.

Standard range

A standard bathroom renovation cost comes in at between $15,000 and $30,000, and constitutes a middle-of-the-road renovation that involves both cosmetic and additional work. A standard renovation is completed using standard-range materials and fittings – not the cheapest but certainly not the most expensive, either. 

Renovations are most commonly carried out within the standard budgeting range. This typically results in some plumbing and electrical improvements, as well as the ability to opt for upgrading some cosmetic items. For example, more expensive fittings or a more luxurious bathtub can be considered within a standard range renovation, so long as the plumbing and electrics are in generally good order.

Premium range

bathroom renovation

A premium bathroom renovation cost comes in around $30,000 and up, and is considered to be a luxury-style renovation using only top-of-the-line materials and fittings. Premium bathroom renovations can include changes to the floorplan, installing or significantly  altering plumbing and electrics, and using higher-end materials and fittings to create a more luxurious finish.

How to plan your bathroom renovation budget

Planning a budget for your bathroom renovation cost is essential to ensure that you stick within your financial limits while still achieving a renovation that you can be happy with. 

Firstly, you will need to determine what renovations you wish to complete, and consider the average cost of materials for those renovations at different price points, as well as any necessary labour costs.

Try our smart quoting engine to create a free bathroom renovation quote in minutes!

The most common areas of the bathroom that require alteration or replacement during a renovation include:

The most common areas of the bathroom that are changed or altered during a renovation are:

  • Plumbing elements
  • Floor and wall tiles
  • Shower screens
  • Bathtubs
  • Toilets
  • Vanities
  • Lighting
  • Waterproofing Materials

Each of these elements can vary significantly in cost depending on the quality of materials and finishes chosen. A bathroom renovation cost can also vary considerably for labor expenses, for example, bathroom tilers can cost as little as $35 per square metre, or as much as $120 per square metre or more!

What to Do When You Can’t Do A Complete Overhaul

If you are finding it impossible to complete the bathroom renovation of your dreams on your budget, then you will need to consider an alternative plan. Even if you can’t complete everything on your dream wish list, you can still give your bathroom a surprisingly new and fresh look on a budget.

Ideas for alternatives that will suit anyone who can’t afford a complete bathroom renovation include:

  • Buying a new bathroom vanity
  • Installing new shower screens
  • Cleaning and painting existing bathroom tiles
  • Resurfacing tiles (wall tiles, bathtub tiles and basin tiles) to make them look fresh

These alternatives are budget-friendly but will still alter the look of your bathroom without costing too much money.

Bathroom Renovation: Schedule and Time Estimates

One of the most commonly asked questions regarding bathroom renovations is how long it will take – no one wants to be without a functioning bathroom for long!

The exact schedule and time of your bathroom renovation will depend on a number of factors, including the time it takes for the renovation to be researched and planned, the exact scope of the project, and how long it takes for the work itself to be completed. 

As a general rule of thumb, you can expect the planning to take around 6-8 weeks, and 1-4 weeks for the renovation itself to be completed.

Step-by-Step Guide to Renovating Your Bathroom

It’s important to know what to expect during each stage of your bathroom renovation so you can prepare yourself for the project. The following is a step-by-step guide to what occurs during each stage of a typical bathroom renovation:

1. Design

Before any work can commence, your bathroom renovation should be fully designed and planned out. The design stage includes mapping out the current layout of the bathroom and designing the new, improved layout and/or the addition of your desired new elements, such as moving or altering fixtures, adding tiles, and so on.

2. Removing the Old Bathroom

Before the renovation work itself can begin, your old bathroom needs to be removed and/or stripped. Exactly what this involves will depend upon the scope of the project. For example, if you are replacing your floor and wall tiles, the stripping process will involve removing the existing tiles completely.

3. Plumbing Alterations

If your bathroom renovation plans include alterations to the plumbing in the bathroom, then the next step will involve a professional plumber and/or electrician team marking up the new plumbing schematics, measuring all dimensions and ensuring that everything will fit smoothly in your newly renovated bathroom. 

4. Prepping the walls and floors

Before the walls and floors can be retiled, they need to be prepared. This involves two processes: rendering the walls and floors so they have a smooth finish, and prepping them with cement bedding and waterproofing.

5. Tiling 

Once the walls and floors are prepped, they can be fitted with new tiles.

6. Installing new fittings and fixtures

After the tiling is completed, it is time to add in any new fittings and fixtures, such as new toilets, vanities, basins, lighting, and fans etc.

Tips for a successful bathroom renovation

Whether you decide to manage the project yourself or hire a renovation team to complete the project, there are a number of things to consider to ensure the best outcome. Here are a few tips to help you to create a more attractive, functional bathroom while keeping the process efficient, smooth and cost-effective.

Consider bathroom ventilation

All bathrooms must have some type of ventilation, whether it be in the form of a bathroom exhaust fan or an appropriately sized window. For bathroom fans, consider both their noise levels and their exhaust capacity – in other words, how many cubic feet of air they can move per minute, in relation to the size of your bathroom.

Recess for additional room

Bathrooms can be smartly configured into particularly small spaces. Built-in areas such as recessed cabinets, soap dishes and even toilet roll holders can all add to maximising your use of space in smaller bathrooms. You can even consider flattening your bathroom ceiling light by converting it into a recessed light.

Pick the right flooring

Solid wood floors may infuse rooms with a rich sense of character, but they are certainly not the most practical choice for a bathroom. The right flooring for a bathroom is one that is hardy enough to withstand daily bathroom use, as well as being easy to clean and waterproof. Bathroom flooring favourites include porcelain and ceramic tiles, vinyl tiles and sheet vinyl flooring.

Lighting matters

In a room where people most commonly inspect their hair and faces closely, lighting is often quite dim and concentrated in only one spot, typically from a singular ceiling fixture. So, when renovating, at the very least, consider adding some lighting around the main mirror. Equally, however, it is important not to overdo it, as blindingly bright light is not comfortable to work with either. A simple device that can solve this problem and create mood in your bathroom is a dimmer switch – perfect for relaxing evening baths.

Use colour to adjust the perception of room size

To make a bathroom seem bigger, make sure that you stick with light or white colour palettes. Dark colours can make a room feel much smaller, even claustrophobic. Also, use white or light-coloured fixtures (such as bathtubs and toilets). Always think very carefully before painting the ceiling of your bathroom anything other than white, as this can tend to shrink the feel of a room down even further.

Add more mirrors

Most people think only of bathroom mirrors as useful for applying makeup, shaving or primping their hair, but they are so much more than that. Mirrors are design elements that can significantly expand a room visually, as well as add more light to it. Many modern bathroom renovators are adding at least one additional mirror to lift the space and provide even more functionality at the same time.

Protect the lower section of any un-tiled walls

Wherever you aren’t tiling, protect the lower section of your walls by adding beadboard (vertical ‘V’ lining board/wainscoting). Firstly, it can be used to create a particular look that enhances your bathroom’s aesthetic, and it is easy to install. Secondly, it serves to protect your walls from the inevitable water splashes that occur daily from nearby baths, sinks and showers. A good coat or two of an oil-based paint will ensure that the beadboard is practically impervious to any water and moisture. If beadboard doesn’t suit your intended look, however, consider tiling the bottom 40-50 inches of your walls in tile to protect the walls.

Add some freestanding pieces

If the space allows for it, consider having at least one freestanding piece as a design element, such as a cupboard or decorative chair. Such pieces can simply loosen up the room’s aesthetic and add character to the space. If the room is tight, you can always ensure that the item is still practical, such as serving as a place to store soaps, towels or other smaller items.

Add plants to bring the space to life

Plants can introduce some much needed colour into an otherwise sterile bathroom environment, and should not be a design afterthought! Consider adding some floating shelving to feature some trailing plants to add to the homely effect.

Hiring a Bathroom Renovator

When it comes time to hire a bathroom renovation, there are a few things to keep in mind. Firstly, your bathroom renovator needs to be licensed to carry out such works. Plumbing, tiling and electrical work all requires using a professional contractor who holds an up-to-date license in their respective field.

Before hiring a renovator, make sure you ask them the important questions. Questions like: 

  • Do you have a valid licence and can I please see it?
  • How long do you envisage the job will take you? 
  • Can you provide me with a written quote? 
  • Do you have any references? 
  • Could I see examples of previous work? 

The more you can find out about your prospective renovator, the better you will be able to judge if they are the best fit for turning your bathroom renovation ideas into a reality.  Every renovation crew member on our platform is vetted to the above standards and we regularly undertake quality assurance tests to ensure our contractors are maintaining a high standard of work.

Do it on Aireno

Renovating your bathroom can feel like an exciting prospect, a daunting one, or a bit of both! No matter the size and extent of your renovation plans, the most important thing to remember is that a solid, comprehensive plan can save you a good deal of time and money, helping to ensure the smooth running of the project.

If you are thinking of renovating your bathroom, get in touch with Aireno today and see how we can help you!

Aireno streamlines the renovation process, matching you with an experienced project planner to ensure that your bathroom renovation is a hassle-free, convenient and enjoyable experience. 

Get an accurate on-the-spot bathroom renovation quote.

Sean Di lorenzo on February 11 2023