Bedroom Remodeling Cost Guide
Why Should You Remodel the Bedroom?
The master bedroom is a crucial part of the house, in fact, it is the main reason for owning a house. The master bedroom is your retreat from the outside world after a hectic day, your sickbay when you are indisposed, and your hallowed reading and meditation den. A new-look bedroom speaks volumes about the value of the house, and is more functional, pleasant, comfy, and ambient. Over the years the bedroom has become dull and boring, so you decide to upgrade it. Your life circumstances may have changed, for example you now have a partner and children, accommodate your folks, or sublet to a paying guest, you might have to remodel another bedroom (HGTV). For this article we will focus on the master bedroom, with only passing mention of other bedrooms.
Summary of Cost Breakdown for Remodeling
Surprisingly, the master bedroom is cheaper to remodel than either kitchen, bat, basement, or other areas in the house, yet it has the greatest impact on the house’s return on investment (ROI). Remodeling costs a fraction of the value of the house, yet it can increase the overall value of the house and give a return on investment (ROI) of between 40 percent and 80 percent according to HGTV. If you do not intend to resell the house, then you would put in more investment for more functionality, indulgence, atmosphere, and relaxation. Functionality will include such future conveniences as a bathroom grab bar or rail, wheelchair rump, or even a shift to the ground floor. The overall cost of standard remodeling of a 400-square foot master bedroom en suite with a walk-in closet ranges from as low as $8500 (Homewyse) to as high as $30,000 (HGTV), depending on your configuration. A budget of $1800 will you a decent remodeled master bedroom. Experts like Homewyse advice that a bedroom remodeling cost should be between 0.7 percent and 2.5 percent of the value of the remodeled house.
Cost of Remodeling by Task/Milestone
|TASK /MILESTONE||SIZE/ QUANTITY||MATERIALS COST||LABOR HOURS||LABOR COST||TOTAL COST|
|WALL||800 square feet||-||-|
|Relocation||(15 feet long)||$1500||10||$700||$2200|
|FLOORING||400 square feet||-||-|
|CEILING||400 square feet||-||-|
|BED AREA||70 square feet||-||-|
|6’ Bed, HD Mattress||$1200||-||-||$1200|
|LOUNGE AREA||90 square feet||-||-|
|VANITY||40 square feet||$550||-||-||$550|
|HVAC DUCT REPAIR||$200||2||$150||$350|
|STORAGE||100 square feet||-||-|
|Walk In Closet||$3500||20||$1500||$5000|
|BATHROOM (refinish)||100 square feet||2500||10||$750||3250|
*Note that you will not incur each and every cost listed, and the prices are only indicative.
Cost of Bedroom Furniture
Some of the common ready-to-use bedroom furniture from popular stores like Walmart, are shown below.
|ITEM||AVERAGE COST||LOW COST||HIGH COST|
|King-sized Bed and HD Mattress||$800||$400||$1200|
|4’ Bed and HD Mattress||$650||$300||$1000|
|4’ high Headboard||$250||$100||$400|
|Dresser 5’ long||$500||$150||$1500|
|Bunk Bed – Twin||$800||$300||$1700|
|Bunk Bed – Full||$1000||$350||$1800|
|Closet – Reach-in||$600||$300||$1500|
|Closet - Walk-in, Narrow||$1200||$600||$3000|
|Closet - Walk-in with Dressing Area||$1500||$1200||$7000|
|Wardrobe – 6’ wide, 2 Doors||$650||$200||$1200|
|Armoire 6’ Long||$6280||$150||$700|
|Lounge Settee and Designer Table – 2-Seater||$650||$350||$1200|
Planning the Remodel
Once you are bitten by the remodeling bug, you can start researching on bedroom designs and costs from magazines, online resources and design consultants. Then identify the features you want to accommodate in your own design and divide the floor into those areas. Determine your bottom line and use it to estimate the cost of each milestone of the remodel. If the budget deviates from the plans then you have three choices: to increase the budget allocation, simplify the design, or buy cheaper fixtures and labor.
The aim of remodeling is to create a multifunctional or self-contained master bedroom with a bedroom, closet, and bathroom areas with a total footprint of about 400 square feet (Jane Klein Interiors). The area of the bedroom will be about 200 square feet (14’ x 14’), walk-in closet with a center island will be 100 square feet (10’ x 10’), and the bathroom will be 100 square feet (10’ x 10’). The trickiest part of remodeling the bedroom is how to create the extra footprint. The easiest and cheapest option is to annex the adjacent room, such as the garage, children’s room, or dining room, by demolishing the dividing wall (HGTV). It costs about $2000 to relocate a 15-foot wall. Alternatively you can build a house extension in the yard or an upper floor at a cost of between $25,000 and $100,000 with a staircase installation (see our article on Cost of Installing a Basement Staircase).
Obviously this would have to be a separate project from bedroom remodeling, governed by other bylaws, Building Code, and National Electrical Code. The bedroom space will be divided into a bedroom, closet, and bathroom areas. The bedroom will have areas for the bed, reach-in closet, lounge, vanity, reading, fireplace, and wide passages for free movement. Your closet will be upgraded to a walk-in or reach-in closet, wardrobe, armoire, and dresser. The cost of the upgrade will be from $200 for a simple and ready-to-use wardrobe, to $7500 for a walk-in closet. The vanity area is necessary when you do not have a center island in the closet (Fotolia).
Managing the Project
You will supervise the project directly or through a contractor. You will monitor and control the budget and pace of the project through a project timeline. You especially need to know exactly what materials and fixtures are bought since they must fit your style and budget. It is wise to draw a project management chart and get every person to follow it closely. No doubt the new closet is the flagship project in the remodel, which defines the character of your new master bedroom. It is also the single most expensive fixture. Installing a brand new bathroom would have to be a separate project because it is complex and costly (see our article on Bathroom Remodeling Cost Guide). In order to save some money, you can DIY such tasks as painting, carpet setting, and fixing hooks and rails.
One of the reasons for engaging a remodeling contractor rather than DIY is to reduce the duration you stay out of your bedroom. Homewyse advises that you draw a project plan that details allocation and costing of materials, labor, and timeline for each stage or milestone. You can draw the plan using a spreadsheet with charts or better still, use a project software such as Microsoft Project.
Overall Cost of Remodeling
The basic cost of the bedroom remodeling project according to Homewyse is between $$8500 and$25000 which goes to hiring labor, buying materials, transport, equipment rentals, site preparation, demolition and disposal, and works insurance. A building permit and inspection certificate will cost you between $90 and $1200 depending on the state, while sales taxes and insurance will cost another $200 to $800. Allow a five percent margin for breakage and waste. The after-remodeling costs such as property tax, utility bills, and property insurance will increase.
Per Square Foot Costing
According to Doityourself the cost of remodeling is often expressed in costs per square foot, but this method is just a rough estimate which does not consider individual variables. Some amenities are fitted into a smaller space, which raised the per square foot value of the bedroom. Labor charges also differ greatly by region, therefore the cost for a larger space becomes high. The cost of remodeling the master bedroom is estimated at $100 per square foot.
Labor constitutes nearly 50 percent of the total budget, but you can save between 5 percent and 15 percent of the cost by DIY in painting, installing hooks, tiling and carpet setting. The more technical remodeling should be left to the professionals. A general contractor will raise your overall cost by between 15 percent and 23 percent. The professionals will charge at hourly rates are as follows: carpenter $70, electrician $75, plumber $75, painter $30, carpet setter $40, and interior decorator $100. Relocating and testing internal systems like HVAC, plumbing, electrical systems will cost a further $350 to $800.
You will start by determining what amenities to incorporate in your remodeling, for example installing an entertainment center. New features will require fixtures, for example the entertainment center will require wall brackets for the TV and speakers, and wiring, networking, and cabling (Doityourself). The closet will have a new storage organization and a dressing area. Decide on the appropriate flooring for the wet areas (bathroom), which should be waterproofed with tile finishing; the bedroom floor, which should be heat- and noise- insulated with fiberglass and finished with wooden tiles and a soft rug or carpet; and the closet which should be finished with tiles and carpet. The cost of remodeling the floor will range between $$ and $$. The new place will be roomier, more private, and easier to sell.
The total cost of remodeling is spread over the project milestones, including preparation and design, construction, management, and other costs. Doityourself explains that preparation involves getting the finances for the project, studying the Building Code and National Electrical Code, which stipulate the minimum standards for structural strength, of the support structure, safety of fixtures, and livability of the house. You will research on materials, design, and labor options available in your area. Design involves drawing the plans for the new bedroom, with help from an interior designer at a cost of $500. Before embarking on the remodeling, you will obtain the necessary permits after inspection at a cost of between $90 and $1200, and identify a remodeling expert. Add the cost of demolition and clearing the worksite. You will organize for transport of material to and debris from the site at a cost of $300.
You will allocate 50 percent of your budget to professional labor. Engaging individual professionals may save you some money, but you will do more supervision and the final results will look less professional than when you engage a general contractor. Most remodeling work will involve carpentry and electrical installations, such as partitioning, flooring, installation of the closet and other furniture, wiring, fixtures, and décor.
Installing the House Structure
The bedroom walls, ceiling, and floor will be upgraded during the remodeling. They will have new insulation, finishing, and painting. In the rare case, a new window has to be installed.
The bedroom and closet floors should be warm and comfortable, which requires heat insulation and softer finishing materials such as parquet, hardwood blocks, and hard-wearing carpet. Polished wood is comfortable and thermo-insulated. Soft rugs can be used as floor covering in the bed, lounge, and center island areas where you normally stay barefooted for extended periods at a time. The fireplace looks elegant and rustic with concrete, slate or stone finishing. As a wet area the bathroom should be finished with waterproofed and anti-slip tiles. Ceramic and porcelain tiles are glossy and attractive in design. At $2 per square foot and 8 hours of work, the bedroom and closet floor would cost approximately $600 in materials, $150 in rugs, and $420 in labor to finish. The bathroom floor will be tiled with ceramic tiles at $5 per square foot or $500 (Builder and EcoHome Magazine) and labor will cost $280
Wall and Ceiling Insulation and Finishing
Insulation material is stuffed between spacers or between joists. Batt or fiberglass is ideal for insulation the bedroom walls and ceiling. It costs $1.20 per square foot and takes 8 hours to insulate 800 square feet of wall and 400 square feet of ceiling. The wall will be finished with gypsum board. Therefore, you will incur $1440 for insulation materials, $720 for boarding, and $560 for labor (homewyse.com).
Installing Electrical and Lighting Fixtures
Power outlets are installed at 10 foot intervals and two feet above the floor. Most lighting will be for ambience and comfort rather than functionality. They include a chandelier or a shaded light at the lounge area, a pendant light in the reading, vanity or center island areas, a shaded wall light above the fireplace, and a canister light in the bathroom. The various lighting fixtures will cost between $300 and $700 depending on your choice. Separate wiring, cabling, and networking will be done at a cost of $150 for materials and $300 for labor. Arc and ground fault circuit interrupters (AFCI and GFCI) will be installed at a cost of and $150 for materials and $140 for labor. The entertainment center will cost about $100 to set up (excluding the machines).
Installing the Bedroom
The bedroom reflects your taste and demeanor. You want an elegant yet sober bedroom with soft lighting and elegant furnishing and fixtures. You need a private space for resting, relaxing, refreshing, and working in peace and quiet.
Size of Bedroom
According to Houseplanshelper, the size and number of the bedrooms should be proportionate to the size of other rooms and the house in general. A small bedroom has a footprint of between 72 and 100 square feet and accommodates a small bed (4-foot width), a few fixtures, and scanty furniture. A standard bedroom has a footprint of between 120 and 180 square feet and can accommodate a medium-sized bed, reach-in closet or large wardrobe, and a vanity. A large bedroom of more than 200 square feet contains a king-sized bed, and has different areas for the lounge, bed, vanity, and so forth. In addition, it has separate rooms for the en suite and walk-in closet.
Privacy, Tranquility, and Comfort
The bedroom should be a place of tranquility and peace, therefore when opened, the door should not expose the head board directly. The window should have a view to a pleasant lawn or garden, while blinds and curtains control the view and natural lighting. The room should be soundproofed again noise in the main house, especially the home entertainment center, kitchen, laundry, and utility rooms. Create wide and clear walkways easy movement in and out of the room. Keep the closet and en suite doors clear of obstructions.
The Bed Area
Your bed is one of the most used items in the house, considering that you spend six to eight hours on it daily. The bed should therefore be comfortable, sturdy, and large enough for the intended users. The bed comes with a headboard, two nightstands, and a mattress. The size and cost of the bed depends on your preferences. As a couple you would want a king-sized bed with a HD mattress, two night stands, and a high headboard that would cost you around $1200. For an additional $200 you can add under-the-bed drawers for storing shoes, suitcases, travel bags, sports gear, and documents. As a single adult you want a comfortable four-foot wide bed with a nightstand and headboard, which will cost around $900.
Headboard and Nightstand
The headboard is really a decorative part of the bed and some people do not have it. The headboard prevents pillows from falling over, and you can adapt it for a bed light, or create pigeon holes for holding a book, the cellphone, reading glasses, and other small articles. The nightstand is a simple yet chic bedside cabinet that is used to place a bedside lamp, alarm clock, and flower vase on top, and keep reading materials, bedside speakers, and a tissue box in the cabinets. The nightstands are usually sold in “his-and-hers” pairs for either side of the bed. A pair of all-wood nightstands costs between $150 and $400.
The vanity is an elegant dressing table consisting of a table, a seat, and a large mirror, as noted by Fotolia. It has shelves and drawers for storing jewelry, makeup kit, perfumes, and other beauty supplies. It serves as a dressing and grooming area. The cost of a vanity is between $300 and $1200, and the average cost is $550.
The lounge area is ideal for relaxing and reading without disturbance. It also serves as the entertainment center and may be located near the window and as part of the fireplace. It has a two-seater “love couch” with large and soft pillows for cuddling, two one-seaters for resting, a small yet stylish table-cum-book rack, and a soft and fluffy floor rug. The total cost of furnishing the lounge area is between $700 and $1200 depending on the level of luxury.
Installing the Storage
Storage for personal possessions like clothing, shoes, headgear, jewelry, linen, toys, and other personal items is important in the house. The closet is the most important enhancement to the master bedroom. Clothes are diverse in shape and size and require different storage spaces to suit each type. Some clothes are folded and stacked while others are hanged on hanger or hook. The storage has to be organized because there are way many items in the bedroom. A good storage system makes the bedroom livable, neat, and welcoming.
Configuration of Shelves
The closet is a floor-to-ceiling storage curved out of the wall and divided into convenient shelving compartments for clothing and linen. It runs the length of a wall or up to the doorway and its shelves are 22” to 24” deep. The closet doors can be designed as swing or slide type, curtain, or no-door, depending on desired décor theme. Enclosures protect clothes from dust and hides them from view (good if you are the untidy kind), while open shelves showcase your well-organized closet and beautiful clothing. Add trim and caulk where the closet meets the ceiling and paint it. The closet has different configurations of shelving to suit different types of clothing and add style to the closet design. The top one foot of the closet is a hard-to-access space, and therefore it is used to store unused and spare line and clothing, spare pillows, suitcases, and for displaying trophies.
The hanging or hanger shelf is a free space with rods for holding clothe hangers. The two basic designs of the hanging are full-length and half-length hanging. The half-length hanging has two levels for hanging where the rods are placed at 3’6” and 7’ from the floor. It hangs shorter clothing such as shirts, jackets, and scarfs. The full-length hanging has a single hanging level at 6’ and is used for hanging long pants, dresses, suits, belts, and other long clothing articles. The closet also has large open shelves for cubbies and baskets, which are used to keep laundry and store toys and other items. 12” high shelves are ideal for bulky clothing and linen such as folded T-shirts and shirts, sweaters, shorts, towels, and duvets. Pull-out drawers are used to store small clothing articles like vests, innerwear, lingerie, socks, folded shirts, scarfs, and even documents.
Some drawers are partitioned into cellarets for better organization of small items like hankies, jewelry, folded ties and belts, wallets and purses, watches, accessories, and bling-bling. For safety, pullout drawers are not installed above the eye level or 6’ above the floor. Shoe shelves or racks are tiered at 9” and 6” heights to store high-heeled and low-heeled shoes. The space behind the shoe rack can be used to store high boots or umbrellas. Open, floating shelves are installed for handbags, briefcases, and boxes. Hooked racks are screwed onto the closet walls and behind doors and used as belt racks, tie racks, belt racks, while hooks are used for hanging headgear, travel bags, bathrobes, umbrellas, and sports gear. In a ready-made closet, the shelves are removable and stackable for dynamic storage spacing.
Types and Costs of the Closet
The cost of installing a closet depends on the design, materials, and size of the closet. It is a carpentry job with minor electrical installations. If need be, you can hire some equipment such as, an electric saw, planer, sander, and pneumatic nail gun. According to Homewyse, there are three basic types of closet: the reach-in, walk-in, and walk-in with a center island. The reach-in closet is a storage space that is recessed into the wall of the bedroom. It may have a long curtain, sliding doors, or swinging doors.
The walk-in closet is a separate room from the master bedroom and is accessed through a curtain divide or a glazed door. Shelves are built into the walls of the closet footprint. The plain walk-in closet has a narrow corridor between shelfs. The walk-in closet with a center island is bigger than the plain version. A dressing area in the middle of the room, comprises of a dresser for extra storage of folded clothes, a chair or couch for sitting on when dressing. The island should be at least 4’ away from the closet in order to allow easy movement and stooping. A walk-in closet costs between $2500 and $7500 to install. On average, you will spend $3500 for installing a closet (HGTV). The cost of labor will be $1400 for a 20-hour job. You can install in-closet LED lights with motion sensors. OxyLED sells an 8-pack Detachable Lights at $110.
Wardrobe, Armoire, and Dresser
A smaller and more affordable way to store clothing is to install a ready-made wardrobe, which is a movable unit measuring 7’ high, 6’ wide, 2’ deep, 6 inch legs. An armoire is similar to the wardrobe except that it has large shelves (24” to 36”) that allow storage of baskets and cubbies. The dresser is used as a center island or an additional storage for folded clothes in the bedroom. These forms of storage do not utilize the space nearer the ceiling, but at least they can be relocated in the bedroom.
A standard, ready-made wardrobe costs between $200 and $1500, and an average of $750. A standard-sized armoire costs between $250 and $2000 and an average of $750. The dresser costs about $350. As a last option, you can buy a simple, portable, and affordable wardrobe that is made of a light metal frame, meshed trays for shelves, fabric for the sides, and a zipped fabric door.
Finishing and Décor
Prices of Décor Items and Fixtures at Overstock and Walmart
|ITEM/FIXTURE||PRICE RANGE||AVERAGE PRICE|
|Pillows – Quilted||$20 - $200||$60
|Bedspread||$70 - $600||$250|
|Nightstand lamp and shade||$20 - $380||$100|
|Wall Clock with Alarm||$40 - $400||$90|
|Picture Frames - Set of Five||$50 - $500||$150|
|Floating Shelves - accented||$20 - $300||$70|
|Wall Mirror||$50 - $400||$100|
|Heavy Curtains||$70 - $550||$150|
|Blinds||$50 - $400||$120|
|Rugs 5’ x 10’||$50 - $600||$100|
The bedroom can be finished with a mix between bright and dull colors. The colors should however be harmonized with the floor surround. If you need a serene environment, then dark colors will complement a low-glow or shaded light. Cool blue and aquamarine colors with shades of white, beige, or brown give excellent results. Closets come in either dark and bold colors like black, walnut, chestnut, and dark grey, or bright colors such as white, eggshell, ivory, and light grey. According to HomeRenovationsGuide, the low-budget materials include wire mesh shelving which is unappealing and less functional, fiberboards like particle board and MDF which are functional and can be painted over for more appeal. The more expensive materials include the plastic-laminated fiberboard or melamine with patterns that imitate real wood and plywood which is sturdy but unpopular. The most expensive material used is natural wood whose cost depends on the type of wood. Wood is strong and appealing, especially when it is properly kilned and treated, but the cost is often prohibitive.
According to Better Homes & Gardens, a set of soft, comfy, and chic bedspreads complements the overall bedroom theme, and costs between $70 and $500 or on average $250. A chandelier over a brightly colored center island is attractive. Recessed lighting will confine bright lighting to a small area, such as the reading areas, while soft or shaded lights will create subdued lighting in the rest of the room. A nightstand lamp next to a flower vase and your treasured photos in elegant frames will provide ambient lighting when the rest of the lights are switched off. You can invest around $150 for heavy window curtains or blinds to control natural light into the room. It also creates a beautiful look to the window area. A wall clock and a few wall pictures or ornamental hangings worth $400 would give life to your bedroom and closet. A $120 wooden-blade ceiling fan not only cools the room during summer, but also looks sleek with its contrasting color. A sideboard with a couple of seats will serve as a storage for personal stuff like documents, while the top will have decorative trophies and a wine basket. The sideboard and chairs will cost $350 to $600.
Wall and Recessed lights
The bedroom should have ambient lighting. Adults prefer soft and subdued lighting around the bed. At areas that need bright lighting, such as the vanity area, recessed lights are used to create and focus light in a small well-lit area with a darkened surround. Homewyse notes that installation of a single wall light costs between $150 and $800 and an average of $280. It costs $280 in labor.
Add a few hooks behind or near the bedroom door for the hat, jacket and umbrella. Add hooks on the bathroom door for a bathrobe and towel. Place small hook all around the walls for hanging picture frames and the clock. Two dozen hooks with screws will cost less than $10.
The ambience, serenity, and coziness of the bedroom is enhanced by decoration and accessories. There are dozens of ways to embellish and beautify the master bedroom on a $200 to $2000 budget, for example you can select fixtures and installations that are trendy. Lighting can be enhanced by using canister, chandelier, pendant, shaded wall, and shaded table lights. A rustic fireplace creates a sense of independence apart from warming the room.
A stylish ceiling fan with wooden vanes is both decorative and functional. Ornaments, picture frames, a large wall clock, and flower vases placed on floating shelves or suspended on hooks make perfect for décor. Paint the walls in brilliant patterns, or use wallpaper, or install a wall carpet for a pleasant feel. Choose a common color scheme for furniture in the bedroom and a different scheme for furniture in the closet. The lounge area should have a soft rug, small designer table, and a soft and deep-seated couch with extra-large pillows for those romantic moments. Small items like designer door knobs, handles, and faucets can make for a refreshing look in the bedroom. Window curtains and blinds will enable you to control natural lighting and privacy in the room.
Soundproofing and HVAC
The bedroom should be soundproofed from external disturbances. Most insulating materials also act as soundproofing as well. However, you can enhance the soundproofing further by finishing the walls with MDF and carpet, and installing heavily cushioned and leather-finished panels, especially on the wall at the bed area. The HVAC system should not be interfered with, but you may need to relocate the ducts at a minor cost of $150. In addition the ceiling fan is installed at $200, more for a cool style than functionality. A $300-fireplace next to the lounge will add warmth (literally), style, and ambience to the bedroom.
Recommendations for Bedroom Remodeling
According to Homewyse you can enhance the resale value of your house by improving the bedrooms in several ways. Keep to a consistent design and décor theme in the all the bedrooms. Harmonize the finishing, furniture, accessories, and décor. Create a compact media and internet hub within the bedroom. The first impression when entering the room is the bed laid with pillows. This is both an impressive and welcoming view. The bedroom remodel should create a higher a sense of privacy, therefore the door should open to a view of the middle part of the bedroom or bed. If it opens to a view of the head or the foot it feels invasive (HGTV). It should never open into an obstruction as this is both unsafe and uncomfortable. The window should not be directly behind the bed head as this feels insecure and it blocks natural lighting into the room. The window should be on either side of the bed or on a different wall. Alternatively, the bed could have a low head and the window be higher.
According to Proreferral, all bedrooms should have a sense of privacy. Bunk beds with built-in drawers and shelves offer privacy as well as save space. If the room is large enough and has at least two windows then it can be partitioned. If you have a fireplace or you are a smoker, install a smoke and gas detector near critical heat and electrical installation. For safety and security, install energy-saving, low-illumination night lights along passages/corridors and on stairs. Use conduits for underfloor wiring.
Builder and EcoHome Magazine
Better Homes & Gardens