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Question DetailsAsked on 5/12/2011

Do I need a GC to install bathroom in my basement?

The 1923 walls sans plaster are already there, but we'll need plumbing, electrical, ventilation, tiling, fixture installation, etc. etc. etc. My head hurts just thinking about it. We are definitely not DIYers, so my only options seem to be to hire a general contractor. What would you do?

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2 Answers


OK ,since you're not diy'ers you need to find someone to do it for you That's the hard part and I know how you feel because I just moved here and didn't know anyone to even get recommendations about contractors from. I used Service Magic, and got one guy, a painter, that I used, and he was great. Or if you know anyone who's had work done by someone they liked, that's a good way. You should make a list of exactly what you want done and just start getting people in there to look at the job. Everyone you interview you will get an impression of and you will learn something and your head will start to hurt less. By having an exact list you can compare prices, even though as the job goes on you may change your mind about something or add something. Just keep interviewing people until you feel comfortable with someone. Price is important but the most important thing in my opinion is that you feel comfortable with the person and trust them. In my experience prices can vary wildly for the same thing, so look at that. Avoid anyone who doesn't get back to you with the estimate in a timely fashion, if you have to prod them at that point, what would it be like to get them to finish the job? Also avoid anyone who tells you that you don't want something. I also found some good people on Craig's list that did a great job for very reasonable prices. Really the most anxiety producing part is just thinking about it, and the hard part is interviewing people.

Answered 9 years ago by megsmom


First and foremost you need someone that has familiarity with design of basements/lower levels to design/plan the best use of space of square footage you have allocated to use.

From there, this designer should be able to reciprocate ideas with a plumber to decide what and how much work will be needed for placement of the bathroom, whether a wet bar is considered and the cost ramifications involving the certain locations of the plumbing fixtures. Sometimes you can open a huge can of worms which can involve demolition and opening of walls leading up to the other levels of the house.

Once you've gotten some hard lines in the matters of your basement living space and you are within specific guidelines, the other contractors pretty much follow the chain of what needs to go next.

In my area bathroom/basement remodels range from $12-45 thousand dollars. How nice you make it determines the top dollar costs. In the industry average when you install a full bath (1 toilet, 1 tub/shower combo, 1 lavatory sink) the expected real estate value is $10-13 thousand in most cases. A shower only enclosure will not classify that bathroom as a "legal" full bath.

IF you have sufficient square footage to work with, remember that there is an average cost per square foot price for those basement remodels. I don't know what that is but the numbers when you find them will help you in the matters at hand.

Take pictures from beginning to finish to record the progress of your project.

Answered 9 years ago by RK44

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