We get a lot of requests for changing or adding basement bathrooms. Yet many homeowners never complete these projects due to a variety of fears and complications: cost, permits, mess, hiring qualified contractors (see Story #9 for tips on this), inconvenience, timing…. These are valid concerns, some of which cannot be overcome. For example, if anyone claims that they will do this work without the required permits, RUN away! The building inspector’s knowledge of the proper way to install plumbing will save you from expensive and disgusting repairs in the future. We hope that sharing information and unfiltered images from our first home will help to break down other barriers to doing this popular renovation project.
We wanted to buy a house with an unfinished basement so we could immediately increase the value by finishing it. We expected to add a bathroom as part of this project, but there was already a ¾ bathroom and a laundry area in the basement. All of the existing bathroom components (sink, toilet, & shower stall) were in fine, working shape and showed no signs of mold or other issues. We decided to improve the layout by combining these spaces, which required moving the pipes under the basement floor to the new bathroom and washing machine locations. While remodeling the basement bathroom, we can also correct the code violations that our home inspector, Dan Schenkel, found, such as adding an exhaust fan.
With piles of dirt, a cut up basement floor, and beautiful, new pipes laid, licensed plumber Jake Jacoby of Progressive Mechanical and Beams to Basements owner, Mim, share this video about what you can expect with a basement bathroom project. Jake explains why we disturbed so much of the basement floor. In our next story, we’ll show you how we made that mess cutting up the bathroom floor with a concrete saw.
The expertise a licensed plumber brings to your project is crucial, but it isn’t cheap. Instead of cutting costs by hiring someone without the appropriate credentials, find savings through smart plans. Josh moved the stairs in our house to accomodate the best location for the plumbing. In addition to rearranging the basement bathroom and laundry room, we are also adding a bathroom to our house. On the main floor, the existing bathroom will share a wall with the new master bathroom, where the stairs had been. We intentionally grouped all of the new plumbing in the same area as existing plumbing to minimize the amount of new pipes Jake needs to install and keep costs down.