Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Bathrooms(s) Renovation - The conclusion

This conclusion coincides with the last major renovation on my project house. Three years and three months worth. It's hard to believe I now live in a completely modern and functional house with a sound roof, all the ceilings in tact, no water gushing from the walls, new and functioning appliances, and beautiful floors. I had none of those things when I bought this wreck of a house.

As I mentioned before I salvaged the cultured marble tops. They have a nice vintage look and cleaned up well. They also saved me a lot of money. My final retirement sick time/vacation payout was around $20,000 and every bit of it is in these two bathrooms.


I had CL Kitchens perform the same magic they did in my kitchen and they did not disappoint. I like a simple pattern. Even so these look elegant in my bathroom and are lightyears ahead of the mess I tore out two months ago. As nice as these look, the customer service and installation staff is even better. It was quite stressful to spend this kind of money. Installation was quick and flawless and really eased my anxiety.


Floors Direct was much the same story. I first had the old floors chipped up then had the new tile set diagonally. With two bathrooms and a walk in closet there was a thousand cuts to perform but it all came together without a hickup. The attention they paid to being neat as possible was astounding. But folks - tile work in an occupied house is dirty and messy.


I still have the floor moulding and mirrors to do. Not to mention some painting touchups. That will give me something to do next year. I lived with barely functioning bathrooms for over 3 years. Some of that time I could not even use them. Water was coming out of valves in the wrong direction and had to be temporarily patched. Chunks of tile fell off the wall. Toilets broke. I now have a 100% functional and paid off house to start my retirement with. My next goal is figuring out how to travel on a budget.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Bathroom(s) Renovation - Finally the Tubs Arrived

It was a big decision to go with Bathcrest or rip out a tub and walls and go the old fashioned tile route. The price difference was marginal. The deciding factor was the amount of construction time and the finished look. These photos don't do it justice but shooting in a bathroom is tough. Installation time was two very full days for two bathrooms. Just as advertized. The sales person promised installation before Thanksgiving but they missed that by a day... as it was Thanksgiving and all.


I'm sure they promised that time frame to a lot of people all of whom were having heart attacks about getting it done. I'm not that impatient. I would rather best effort then rushed installation. Best effort is exactly what I got. The fit on both bathrooms is perfect. The trim work is precise. Caulking (my fatal flaw) is flawless. The shower doors are very heavy glass and glide, not slide. I paid a little extra for the corner shelf. It blends in nicely.


Both units include a floor, walls, ceiling, and all the plumbing. My original plumbing was on the bare verge of working and the master shower was shedding tile. This upgrade is phenomenal. If you take a quick look or even a second look, it looks like tile. You really have to push on the walls to notice they give a bit in spots. I've been to hundreds of hotels in my life and you can always tell a refit in the floor pan. Both the shower and the tub are rock solid. As good as the original. Better actually as they are non slip.


You can get an idea of the process from the last photo. I have all sorts of guarantees in case it leaks or peels off or something. I'm sure I won't be needing them. I saw no big list of complaints about that happening. If strong smelling glue is an indication of how long it sticks, it's never coming off.


I would just like to mention I have been contemplating this for years. I've spoken to their sales people at various fairs and festivals. Researched the company. Read reviews. My experience with the company has been nothing but pleasant.  When I finally brought an estimator into my home, I was very pleased. No hard sales pitch. I got the price, and a little discount to do both at the same time. Enough to make me pull the trigger. They could see I researched heavily and knew exactly what options I wanted so there was no pressure. The scheduler could not have been more pleasant and apologetic they were going to move me to the day after Thanksgiving holiday. The installer worked two long days non stop. I did most of the prep work. It took me the full two months I waited on this order. I'm good but I would not want to work for this guy. I would not last a week.

I now have a garage full of tile, cabinets, toilets, and two counters sitting in my bedrooms. Still a lot to do but the most expensive pieces are in and I am as pleased as I could be.