How do you know if your bathroom is out of date? An obsolete bathroom obviously isn’t an emergency, but if you want your bathroom to feel more comfortable and inviting, it’s something you should take action on eventually.
Modern bathrooms are functional, hygienic, stylish, and rewarding for their owners and guests – so how can you tell if your bathroom is out of date?
Warning Signs Your Bathroom Is Out of Date
These are some of the biggest warning signs that your bathroom is out of date:
1. Your toilet doesn’t work correctly. The toilet is arguably the most important component of the bathroom, and the one that’s most frequently used. This is a simple machine that’s been around for hundreds of years (in at least some capacity), but modern toilets are much better and more reliable than their older counterparts. If your toilet drips, if it flushes inconsistently, if it leaks, or if it otherwise doesn’t work correctly, you need a new toilet. And because toilets are usually quite reliable, a toilet that’s so old it’s no longer functional it’s usually a sign that there are other problems with the bathroom as well.
2. You don’t have a bidet. A decade ago, bidets in the United States were a rare novelty, held only by pretentious or particularly culturally open-minded people. Today, bidets are everywhere – and for good reason. Logically, bidets are superior to cleaning yourself with toilet paper. Water gets you cleaner than wiping with paper, it’s much less abrasive, it’s much cheaper, and it has the potential to help you prevent health complications like hemorrhoids. Best of all, modern bidets are highly affordable and easy to install, so there’s no good reason to avoid getting one.
3. The toilet seat looks gross or discolored. How does the toilet seat look? This is where you and your guests are going to sit when you take care of important business, so you probably won’t feel hygienic or comfortable if the toilet seat is misshapen, discolored, or otherwise in bad condition. Replacing a toilet seat isn’t a big deal, but again, this could be a sign that the rest of your bathroom needs some care.
4. There’s no storage space. Most people have countless items to store in the bathroom, including towels, washcloths, personal hygiene items, and cosmetic items. But bathrooms from decades ago had hardly any storage space. If your important items end up in a pile on the floor, or if you’re forced to use makeshift storage options, it might be time for an upgrade. Fortunately, even if you have a small bathroom, there are dozens of brilliant ways you can expand your storage space in the modern era. Even if you don’t want to install new cabinets and drawers, you can probably find something inexpensive that works.
5. Cleaning doesn’t do the job anymore. Cleaning the bathroom is an important chore, but if your bathroom is old enough, it’s not going to do much for the visual aesthetics of the room. If your bathroom looks disgusting even after a round of cleaning, it’s time for an upgrade.
6. You have wallpaper that belongs in a museum. There’s nothing inherently wrong with wallpaper, but when it gets to be decades old, it usually looks awful – especially if the previous owners chose a terrible design. You’ll know this wallpaper when you see it.
7. There’s carpet. Let’s not dig into the details of why carpeted bathrooms ever became popular. It was a poorly conceived idea – and most people consider it to be gross.
8. You or someone else has gotten hurt. If you or someone close to you has slipped or fallen because of a problematic layout, making an upgrade is practically non-negotiable.
Building Around Your Budget
So what do you do if your bathroom is truly out of date?
That mostly depends on your budget and your willingness to make upgrades. If you have a few extra thousand dollars to spend, you might consider a total makeover. Start getting quotes from contractors and looking at replacement options; in many cases, you can add enough value to your home to completely justify a full renovation.
If you don’t have the budget for this, you’ll have to be more scrutinizing and strategic with your upgrades. Replacing the toilet or the vanity or projects that might set you back just a few hundred dollars – and you might even be able to do the work yourself. Taking down the wallpaper and painting is even cheaper.
Whatever your budget or your motivations are, you shouldn’t leave your bathroom untouched if you’re unhappy with it. This is one of the most important and most commonly frequented rooms of your house, so it deserves some extra love.
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