|Here's the tub your'e not getting: Made by|
Arcaro-Martini of Italy, it's plated with 24 karat gold
and will run you about $100,000.
Whenever my clients hear this number, however, they guffaw and make wisecracks like, “Hey—I don’t want a gold-plated bathtub or anything.”
Don't worry—you’re not getting one.
One reason bathrooms are so expensive (second only to kitchens) is that they contain a lot of plumbing, mechanical, and electrical work concentrated in a small area. They also require a range of relatively expensive finish materials and cabinetry, as well as some often-pricey hardware such as towel bars and the like.
|When I say you can spend any amount of money you want|
on a toilet, I'm not kidding. Here's one for those
incurable romantics among you.
• Plumbing materials. While the cost of so-called “rough” plumbing materials—piping, hangers, and the like—is comparatively modest, the cost of installing them isn’t. In my neck of the wood (the San Francisco Bay Area, plumbers charge anywhere from $80 to $130 per hour or more for labor. You might get away with less where you live, but it will still put a dent in your wallet.
|A little more in line with most people's budgets,|
fifty bucks will still get you this standard plastic
lavatory faucet. Sorry, no German name on this one.
Lavatory sinks, showers, and tubs all have similarly wide price ranges, as well as much higher fitting costs. Lavatory faucets, for example, can run from around $50 for dime-store grade models made of plastic, all the way up to $1,000 and more for ultra-chic creations. Add a German name, and you can add another $200 to the price. And don’t forget: Labor, labor, labor.
|Towel bars can run anywhere from $15 bargain bin models |
to Baroque creations such as this one,
which comes in just under two hundred bucks.
• Finish materials. The coup de grace for most bathroom budgets comes from finish items such as flooring, countertops and shower surrounds. These costs tend to sneak up on you near the end of the project, just when you thought you were still solvent. Countertops can range from a low of around $15 per square foot for for plastic laminate, to well over $300 per square foot for a custom concrete job. Tile is so wide-ranging in price that, basically, you could spend any amount you wanted on it. And whether you go cheap or fancy on the material, however, the installation is still going to cost at least five bucks a square foot.
• Lastly, don’t overlook the cost of towel bars, toilet paper holders, soap dishes, and the like. Though they seem like nickel-and-dime items, they add up quickly. A basic, piece-of-junk towel ring, for example, starts at around $20, and if you want anything with a semblance of quality, the price will go up—way up. Hence, if you haven’t been minding your budget, your towels may end up hanging on a nail.