This incredible bathroom makeover cost less than £500 – a DIY job done right!

See how one savvy homeowner achieved this trendy bathroom on such an impressive budget

Dream of overhauling your bathroom, but worry about the expense? This impressive transformation is sure to flush those worries away because this cheap bathroom remodel cost less than £500!

Courtesy of our very own 'Ideal Home Room Clinic' Facebook group, we found this impressive bathroom transformation. Interiors enthusiast and bargain hunter Tim Grainger, from Devon, turned his hand to a spot of DIY home renovations – to save on costs. And it's certainly paid off.

We think you'll agree from the below, it doesn't look like a cheap bathroom remodel – it looks like it cost Tim a small fortune.

More inspiration:See how one DIY fan totally transformed her living room – creating a fireplace for under £80

bathroom before after with western commode and white bathtub and white window

(Image credit: Tim Grainger)

Tim's budget bathroom remodel – before

bathroom before break wall and tiles with pipeline western commode

(Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Grainger)

The time came when we needed to tackle the existing badly decorated bathroom’ explains Tim. 'The house, it seemed when we bought it, had not been decorated since the early 1980s or earlier going by the colour scheme.'

Going on to paint a picture he says, 'The bathroom had drab plastic marble effect panelling which had been stapled and badly siliconed to clad the existing walls. The first thing I did was remove all the panels.' It soon became apparent to Tim there wasn’t a supporting structure behind them.

'This caused the panels to flex and worse the plaster and lathe walls that were behind had missing plaster and holes everywhere, I had two choices either plasterboard or plaster the entire room, I was limited for space so chose plaster.'

The build

bathroom with shoes bucket blur background

(Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Grainger)

Unfazed by the state of the walls, he reveals, 'I removed the loose plaster and using online video tutorials (YouTube) learnt how to plaster. I already had the tools, as I had plastered a fireplace the previous year – but this was a much grander project.'

’I am not a tradesman,' Tim adds, 'I was just brought up on the amazing DIY Readers Digest bible and Changing Rooms, I just do it for fun’.

'Once dry the walls took several coats of watered down emulsion, which is an important process on freshly plastered walls – to allow the colour to stick without being absorbed,' he advises.

'The sash windows had been painted and therefore did not open. It took a good few hours to free them up but the benefit is certainly worth it as was the window ledge which I stripped back carefully with a heat gun.'

bathroom with broken walls and pipeline with measurement tape and pen

(Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Grainger)

'More tricky was how to hide all the existing pipework for both the sink and bath tub as I didn't want pipes to spoil the look. I had the added challenge of radiator pipes too so I took pen to paper to draw a design I liked, this I then went to my local plumbing centre who helped with what parts I may need.'

'Initially all the pipes ran under the floor but this threw up two problems. The first is important for any budding DIY enthusiasts undertaking plumbing –you must have an angled run on your pipework or the water will not drain away.'

The second problem was that made it harder to lay the new flooring. Tim decided to run the pipes behind the bath tub and concealed them.

Tim measured the floor and bought a piece of hardboard to cut to size and tack to the floor to protect the exposed floorboards.

white bathtub with legs

(Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Grainger)

'I chose to keep the existing toilet but updated the flush mechanism. I also bought a new toilet seat, for £5 in the Homebase sale.

‘We’d previously found a gorgeous slipper bath for the grand price of £10 from our local tip. The foot of the bath had become detached, but I knew it was an easy fix with silicon. ‘

Tim humorously explains, 'We knew we had a bargain when two gentlemen tried to buy it off us as we wrestled it into our VW golf! Yes it went in.’

The stylish bath was upturned and painted in a light clotted cream colour. The foot was reattached with a flexible glue – to prevent it cracking under the bath's weight.

Tim's Bathroom after the transformation

bathroom with blue walls and wooden flooring white bathtub and western commode with sash windows

(Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Grainger)

'The wooden blind was from our old house, so cost nothing. Luckily it was a simple click fit to the sash windows.'

'We decided we wanted a warm lino and for practicality, with potential water on the floor. I sourced an off-cut for only £30.'

The walls were painted an on-trend shade of blue grey to really finish the whole look. The paint colour is 'Tin Bath' by Crown.

The sink made from an old mixing bowl...

mat red side chair with round wash basin and faucet with plain weave basket

(Image credit: Future PLC/Tim Grainger)

'The side table for the sink was bought for £2, and painted it in a heritage aubergine colour. I added an old cream mixing bowl, using a drill for a pilot hole ground a sink hole in it. It did take some time as the bottom was almost an inch thick but it was worth it! Now we have a bespoke unit with a waterfall tap to avoid splashes.'

How impressive is that? We're taking our hats off to Tim for being brave enough to tackle this big a project himself. It proves just how much you can save, if you know what you're doing mind – otherwise it could prove costly.

Related: Linda Barker's kitchen is really not what you'd expect

'It was one of many rooms we have made over. Despite a few setbacks, like a burst pipe which sent water spurting everywhere, it's been a fun challenge. I learnt how to plaster, plumb, woodwork and lay a lino floor.

'Our town house, is a wonderful blank canvas to design. Spread over three floors, there's a lot of room to play with'.

Fingers crossed for more inspirational makeovers from Tim soon.


Tamara was Ideal Home's Digital Editor before joining the Woman & Home team in 2022. She has spent the last 15 years working with the style teams at Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home, both now at Future PLC. It’s with these award wining interiors teams that she's honed her skills and passion for shopping, styling and writing. Tamara is always ahead of the curve when it comes to interiors trends – and is great at seeking out designer dupes on the high street.