You may have some DIY skills up your sleeve but if you’re not a professional it’s wise to know your limits and when to call in the pros for help.
With thanks to our friends at Handyman Magazine for letting us reproduce this article in part.
There is plenty you can do in a bathroom renovation to cut costs without compromising safety standards but knowing your limitations and the legalities is imperative.
Overestimating what you can accomplish in terms of quality and time is the failing point of most DIYers, and cheaping out on quality in the short term can cost you more in the long run.
Warranties and insurance for many products may be void unless installed by a licensed tradesman and in most instances you need a compliance certificate to make a claim. It’s important to remember that anything involving plumbing or wiring should be considered off limits (the old saying one flash and you’re ash is popular among tradies for a reason). That aside don’t despair as there are plenty of jobs that you can do yourself and they include stripping and demolishing the old bathroom as well as replastering, tiling, painting and installing fixtures.
A plumber and a sparkie are essential and, depending on your state and council regulations, a waterproofer may also be required. Tiling and painting can be done DIY but be realistic about your skills and the value of your time before getting stuck into it.
A licensed plumber will disconnect and reconnect the services, as well as installing tapware, toilets, sinks, showers and baths. You’ll need a plumber to move or reconnect pipes and install waste outlets.
Cost: About $70 an hour. If you don’t relocate plumbing then budget for $1200.
A licensed electrician has to do all hard wiring of lighting and power, and can also install exhaust fans, heaters and power outlets.
Cost: About $60 to $70 an hour plus appliance costs.
Waterproofing is essential to prevent leakage that can cause structural damage and damp. Termites are also attracted to wet and warm environments. It’s illegal to DIY the waterproofing in some areas.
Cost: An average-sized bathroom costs about $600 to waterproof.
A professional tiler charges by the square metre, plus materials. The final quote will depend on logistics and the condition of the walls and floor.
Cost: From $2000 for labour, plus materials costs.
A professional painter quotes for a full job but the final bill also takes logistics such as height of the room, access and preparation requirements into account.
Cost: About $50 an hour plus the cost of the paint.
The full article appears in the September Issue of Handyman Magazine. To subscribe to Handyman, call 1300 138 900 or go to handyman.net.au.