Kitchen or Bathroom Remodel: Which One Is Best?

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You need to get your house market-ready. But you’re not sure whether to remodel the kitchen or bathroom. Or which one to do first. 

How do you know which one to choose?

According to the most recent data from Houzz, kitchens are the most popular room in the house to remodel, followed by guest and master bathrooms. Consumer Reports found that 53% of real estate pros think the kitchen is the most important room for attracting buyers, while 42% say it’s the bathroom. 

However, Zillow suggests that it’s a bathroom remodel, and not a kitchen re-do, that will give you the best return on investment.

The reality is there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer for every homeowner. To help you out, let’s go over some considerations for kitchen and bathroom remodels and tips for choosing the best project for your home.

Kitchen Remodel Considerations

Experts who favor a kitchen remodel say it is a highly-trafficked room and a focal point for most buyers. 

  • The kitchen is often the first room buyers want to see when shopping for a new home. 
  • It is also where real estate agents prefer to place promotional materials and greet prospects during an open house.
  • Updating the kitchen goes a long way toward enhancing the aesthetic appeal of your home. 
  • A kitchen remodel may not require much plumbing work if only one-to-one replacements are involved. More extensive work will be needed if you’re adding new water lines. 
  • Electrical work generally includes replacing existing lighting fixtures and outlets with more up-to-date models. Other possibilities include new lighting, such as under counter lights. 

Zillow cautions that kitchen design can be very subjective. Improvements that appeal to you may differ from what a prospective buyer would choose. Consult with an experienced contractor on which kitchen updates would be of value to buyers in your area.

Luxury bathroom

Bathroom Remodel Considerations

In some cases, a bathroom renovation may give you a better ROI than refurbishing the kitchen, depending on what’s included in the project.

  • A mid-range bathroom upgrade to an older home can add significant value. Common features include replacing the tub, toilet and lighting fixtures; adding a double sink; tiling the floor; and hanging new wallpaper.
  • Upscale features such as a full body-wash shower and bidet may be of interest to some buyers but may add less value. 
  • Minimal plumbing work is required if all you’re doing is replacing faucets, toilets and other features. More extensive work will be needed if you’re making bigger changes to the layout of your bathroom
  • Electrical work typically includes replacing items like fans, light fixtures and outlets. 

Remodeling Considerations to Help You Decide

In addition to the room-specific factors above, you’ll also need to think about your remodeling priorities, your schedule and, of course, your budget.

  • Which room needs the most updating? If your kitchen appliances are worn out and need replacing, this might also be a great time to remodel the whole room. If either the kitchen or the bathroom is too small, creating more space may be your priority. 
  • Are there any special needs to consider? Seniors and residents with disabilities may need upgrades to the bathroom for safety purposes. Your project might include grab bars and a more accessible shower. 
  • How much time do you have? A mid-range bathroom remodel typically takes 18 days if new drywall and insulation are included, or 14 days if no drywall is involved. Kitchen projects can range from 30 days for smaller updates to 6 months for more extensive changes. 
  • What kind of disruptions are you prepared for? You may not be able to use a room temporarily while a renovation is underway. For a kitchen remodel, you may need to eat more restaurant meals. During a bathroom project, you may need alternative arrangements for taking showers and using the restroom. 
  • What is your budget? Based on national averages, a kitchen remodel tends to be more expensive than a bathroom project. However, there is a great deal of variation based on a number of factors. For instance, a few small changes will cost less than a complete remodel. Your budget will also depend on whether you opt for mid-range or upscale features. 

Finally, talk to an experienced contractor about whether a kitchen or bath remodel would give you the most value for your budget. 

Reach out to Elite Renovatons & Design for a free quote and to get started on your project!

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Luxury kitchen with hardwood floorSmall bathroom vanity with bowl sink and open shelves