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Interior design at Buy2letExpert

Interior design:
 - Curtains and blinds
 - Furnishings
 - Lighting
 - Floor coverings
 - Decoration
 - Kitchen design
 - Bathroom, plumbing design

Bathroom and plumbing design

Bathrooms and kitchens are the most expensive rooms in property to replace. It is very easy to spend thousands of pounds in these areas and receive little or no return. Consequently, careful design is very important. Practical tenant demand criteria might include:

  • Bathroom is likely to be heavily used if all bedrooms are utilised to maximise rent. The bathroom should be designed with this in mind.
  • Showers with decent water pressure are essential. Tenants do check!! Use pumps or ideally utilise a pressurised system boiler and cylinder. If there is no room for a separate shower, place the shower over the bath but ensure water is containerised and not causing floods.
  • Available space may be an issue. Outside the U.K. a decent shower (and no bath tub) will often suffice. British clients (especially women) tend to still be attracted to a bath so generally we would advise installing a bath if at all possible to attract the widest possible potential client base. However it is far from essential.
  • All bathrooms should be fitted with extractor fans that activate with raised humidity and turn off once the bathroom is dry and humidity falls. Tenants rarely open windows in winter and this system ensures mould growth is reduced especially when combined with under floor heating.
  • Underfloor heating should be considered if floor coverings are to be changed. Consider 'wet' versus 'dry' (electric) systems.

A few cost effective Buy2LetExpert design ideas are:

Use natural materials. For example a carefully sourced travertine tile might cost £30 psm versus a decent ceramic alternative at say £20 per sq M. So, a typical smaller bathroom might cost an extra £250 to £300 in tiles for floor to ceiling tiling. So, summarising the costs:

 - Labour price £1000.
 - Adhesives, grout etc £200
 - Tiles costs (30 m2) £600 (ceramics) or £900 (traveltine)

So, using ceramics the tiling job costs £1800. However, for £2100 the job is done in completed in travertine.

We would strongly recommend the extra £300 spent here and easily save this in the purchase of bath, W.C. etc. The use of natural materials has many advantages but include:

- Timelessness. Natural materials date far less. Artificial colours and finished do. Consequently expect less frequent bathroom refurbishments when using natural materials. The base tiling should look good for 20 years when using natural tiles. However, an artificial tile with particular colours can look dated in 5 years.

- A natural tile is a solid material and not just a glazed product. Hence no need for ugly plastic corner pieces on outer corners and edges. The feel of quality is enhanced without such plastic edging. It is easy to see the natural tile is solid especially on window ledges and corners. It oozes quality.

- Replacement of the tiles is easier. With a natural tile an exact match is not always necessary:

  • If a bath is to be installed, avoid plastic moulded versions. They are expensive and stain easily. A simple white ceramic bath is quite adequate and should cost no more than £250. Ratings are often given regarding the thickness of the bath. Generally, the thicker gauge implies more chip resistance.
  • Attractive modern W.C.ís can be purchased cheaply utilising the internet. Likewise taps, waste kits for sinks and baths, shower trays etc. Spend a little time here and save far more than the extra £300 required for the travertine tiles.
  • Replace any dated obscure glass glazing to windows with sand blasted glass. This is cheap to execute but is important
  • Like the W.C., bath and sink and taps, accessories such as toiler roll holders, hooks, shelving, towel rails, mirrors cupboards etc can cost a fortune. Source cheap alternatives from the internet, or use Ikea or similar retailers.
  • Lighting. Consider upgrading to sunken spot lighting. Avoid low voltage halogen which produces a very white light. Mains voltage halogens give a warmer light.
  • Glazing. 'Mottled' or 'patterned' glass should be replaced for more contemporary sandblasted glass which give the same privacy.

In summary, spend on the natural materials for floor and walls. Upgrade lighting and any dated window glazing. Go almost as cheap as possible (within the design constraints) on the remainder but NOT the plumbing quality. This targeted spend will keep the cost down and result in a bathroom that both looks great to a wide audience and is likely to far outlast many typical alternatives.




modern bathroom

To contact us call: 020 7482 0300 or email