5 ways to add value with a strata property bathroom renovation
A well-planned strata property bathroom renovation can turn even the smallest spaces into a work of art if you think outside the box. What’s more, it can also increase your property’s value
If you live in an older building and your bathroom hasn’t been refreshed in over 15 years, it may be time for you to plan a strata property bathroom renovation.
A strata property bathroom renovation is the perfect opportunity to think outside the box, get creative and find ways to increase your bathroom’s comfort factor. You may find your reno increases your property’s value too.
While many strata property owners may only update their tiles, fittings and fixtures during a renovation, it’s wise to take an extra step to make further improvements too. Perhaps your bathroom’s layout could be upgraded to improve its traffic flow. Maybe the corner with the washing machine could be transformed into a stylish yet compact European laundry. You could even completely reinvent the space by picking a design style that better suits your home or adding spa-like elements to create a relaxing ambience.
Before finalising your plans and beginning renovation works, it’s critical first to follow all necessary processes. Similar to kitchen renovations, your project may be considered a minor or major renovation. If so, you will likely need to complete a renovation application. After this, your owners corporation will likely need to approve the renovation works with a special resolution at a general meeting.
You may also need to prepare a by-law or building rule and have it passed before commencing your renovations. If so, you should approach a strata by-laws and building rules specialist such as Kemps Petersons Legal to ensure the new by-laws or building rules are watertight. The by-laws or building rules will likely cover the following:
- The days and time periods during which the renovation works can be conducted
- The level of responsibility the lot owner has in covering damage to common property or other lots.
Importantly, your renovation team must apply adequate waterproofing during the renovation. Sub-optimal waterproofing may lead to water damage to your property and neighbouring properties too.Are you looking to renovate your strata property’s bathroom? Here are five improvements to consider, which will likely modernise your bathroom and add value to your strata property too:
- Pick a design theme and stick to it
- Improve your ventilation
- Install underfloor heating
- Add some heated towel racks
- Consider a smart shower or smart bath
1. Pick a theme and stick to it
A strata property bathroom renovation is a great opportunity to work on your home’s aesthetic cohesion. Before finalising your renovation plans and purchasing products and materials, take some time to think about colour palettes and design styles you like. The colours and design style you pick should match the rest of your strata property, especially your kitchen, living area and dining room.
Some popular bathroom design styles you may consider could include the following:
|Design style||Description||Colour options|
|Hamptons||Light and airy, with natural materials and beachy textures. Pebble tiles, mother-of-pearl accents and statement wallpaper or wall tiles work well for Hamptons-style bathrooms.||
|Traditional||Generally timeless and sophisticated, with antique-style lighting, claw-foot baths and elegant feature walls. Traditional bathrooms often have a furniture-style vanity or a dressing table too.||
|Modern||Clean, sleek and chic, modern bathrooms are streamlined, architectural and fuss-free. They usually feature strong horizontal lines, a free-standing bath, minimalist fixtures and a frameless mirror.||
|Art Deco||Inspired by the roaring twenties, Art Deco bathrooms are eye-catching and glamorous. They feature geometric shapes, bold metallic fixtures, striking tiles, wallpapered feature walls and statement lighting.||
|Industrial||A nod to the Industrial Age, industrial-style bathrooms will generally feature raw materials like concrete, stainless steel and brick. They may also have white subway tiles and copper or graphite accents.||
Improve your ventilation
Many older strata property bathrooms may not have adequate (or any) ventilation. If this is the case, it may be wise to fix the situation during your strata property bathroom renovation.
The easiest way to improve a strata property bathroom’s ventilation is to install an exhaust fan. This may help you get rid of nasty bathroom smells and excess moisture residue from hot showers. It will likely also reduce the likelihood of mould outbreaks.
Depending on your bathroom’s specifics and your budget, you will have a wide range of options to choose from. Instaling a simple exhaust fan may be the cheapest and easiest option. However, a more comprehensive three-in-one light, heat and exhaust fan combination may add to the bathroom’s luxuriousness and comfort. Either way, it’s important to ensure your exhaust fan plans are clearly explained in your renovation application to your owners corporation.
Install underfloor heating
Underfloor bathroom heating is all the rage in Europe and America, and it’s easy to understand why. Cold tiled floors can be pretty unpleasant during cold winter nights. Thankfully, there’s a solution to this problem. While it requires some clever planning, it will likely add value to your strata property.
If your planned renovations involve replacing your strata property bathroom’s flooring, it may be worth considering underfloor heating as well. You’ll be able to choose between electric and hydronic (hot water) underfloor heating, to suit your budget and needs. The following flooring types are generally compatible with underfloor heating:
- Natural stone
- Engineered timber flooring.
Speak to your interior designer or renovation company early in the planning phase if you think underfloor heating is right for your strata property bathroom renovation. That way, your renovation team can plan for it in advance when finalising flooring options. You will also need to detail your underfloor heating plans in your renovation application.
Related question from our StrataFAQ community
Q: I have done a bathroom renovation in my unit, including waterproofing in a building that was built in 1966. A registered builder completed the works and a waterproofing certificate was obtained. The owners corporation is insisting on a “retrospective” by-law to be registered. Do I need to do this?
A: It would seem so, since the renovation involves waterproofing which does not fit the “minor renovations” provisions (for which approval still would have been required)… Read more at StrataFAQ.
Add some heated towel racks
There’s nothing like a warm towel after a long relaxing bath or a quick refreshing shower. The good news is, this creature comfort no longer needs to be a hotel stay-only luxury. By replacing your existing towel rack with a heated towel rack during your strata property bathroom renovation, you can enjoy this all year round, right at home. If you choose to do so, these are the most common options:
- Electric towel rails: These generally run at about 35 degrees. They only require a connection to an electrical circuit, so you won’t need to worry about plumbing
- Hydronic towel rails: These will generally heat your bathroom as well as your towels. You will need to connect them to your home’s hydronic heating system, which will heat the rails internally through hot water
- Liquid-filled towel rails: These use electricity to heat the liquid inside the rails. They may take up to an hour to reach the ideal temperature and can heat the rest of your bathroom too.
Installing heated towel rails will involve some electrical work and plumbing work as well in some instances. This means you will have to get some tradespeople involved in the project. You may have to obtain strata approval before the installation, too. It’s best to check your by-laws or building rules to determine if this is the case.
Consider a smart shower or smart bath
In the age of smart appliances, anything is possible — even smart showers and baths. That’s right; you can integrate smart tech as part of your strata property bathroom renovation to increase your property’s value.
Smart baths generally involve an immersive experience, including temperature control, chromotherapy options and a voice assistant that responds to your bath-related commands. This type of bath comes at a steep price. However, it will inject some hotel-style luxury into your home’s bathroom.
On the other hand, smart showers are far less costly and much for attainable for the average strata property owner. They generally facilitate a personalised showering experience and will allow you and each of your family members to program spray settings and water volumes. As a bonus, they may help you reduce your water usage through short, timed showers with higher water pressure.
By thinking outside the box, you can improve your quality of life and increase your strata property’s value through a strata property bathroom renovation. However, don’t forget to consult your by-laws or building rules and apply for approval before commencing your renovation to ensure you are compliant with strata legislation.
When it comes to caring for and protecting your strata property, our facilities management team at BFMS are the experts for the job. Known for their professionalism and personal service, our team offers everything from expert full and part-time building management to a range of other related repairs, maintenance, and management services. Or, download our FREE Community Living guide series on defects here. If you would like to learn more about Community Health & Safety and related services to ensure your protection, click here.