COST TO ADD A BATHROOM IN THE BASEMENT
Adding a bathroom to your basement is one of the simplest ways that you can add value to your home, in terms of both making it a better place to live, as well as getting more money when you sell. If you have a growing family, it may be a necessity to install a bathroom.
You may also be planning on finishing your basement and a bathroom is an important step of this. Our page on average cost to finish a basement has a detailed cost breakdown of additional upgrades if you’re thinking of redoing the whole space. Regardless of the reasoning, it’s clearly the case that an additional bathroom will improve your home. Additionally, the costs aren’t necessarily as high as you may expect.
This guide will walk you through the costs involved so that you can make an informed decision and work out where best to save money if you are on a budget.
THE OVERALL COST
The overall cost for adding a bathroom in a basement will range somewhere between $3,000 and $25,000.
The variance in this cost comes from whether you build in an existing space, or whether the bathroom is an extension to your existing basement.
The actual cost of installing plumbing and fixtures is between $2,025 and $2,925. This does not include the cost of building a small room in which to house the toilet.
Depending on the number of new fixtures you are installing (for example, if you already have a sink and faucet, and are just plumbing a new toilet, the costs are low) you can usually expect the cost of piping to be between $600 and $1,600 per fixture.
The total labor cost of installation for a new bathroom is $1,200 to $5,500.
The cost of a licensed plumber is usually between $40 and $75 per hour. Per day, you can expect to pay between $320 and $600 for a day’s work (based on an 8-hour day).
FIXTURES AND FITTINGS
Unsurprisingly, when it comes to installing a bathroom in your basement, there is a huge range of different features, fixtures, and fittings you can have installed. Your bathroom can be totally customized in almost any way. For example, if you’re just installing a toilet and a sink, you can keep things fairly simple. However, you can also install a full bathroom with a shower, bath, and toilet.
Moreover, there is a great deal of variance in the type of bathroom you have. You can have a fairly spartan setup, with simple, traditional fittings. However, you can also have a bathroom setup with the highest quality materials at every step. The prices involved in these differ greatly.
As the name suggests, rough-in plumbing is a rough sketch of the layout of your plumbing. Depending on your local building codes, you may need to get this approved by your municipal authority before you proceed with any work. This will usually cost between $320 and $600 for a professional to do (it is unlikely that you will be able to complete this process without using a professional).
You should check your local codes. If this step is not required, it’s usually good to have a plumber plan out their installation in advance, although you don’t need to spend additional money for this process.
The PEX system is a replacement for traditional copper pipes. It uses cross-linked polyethylene (PEX) piping to run water to fixtures and fittings. The advantage it has for a basement bathroom is that it doesn’t require a local ‘branch’ of the main pipe to connect to.
Because of its flexibility, it can connect to the main pipe and then wind its way through the walls down to the basement. This makes it easier (and cheaper) to add a bathroom in a distant part of your home.
If you are using the PEX water supply in your installation, this usually takes around 6 hours. For PEX materials and installation labor, you can expect to pay between $1 and $4 per linear foot.
A typical toilet costs between $120 and $375. If you opt for a smart toilet or a toilet with features like a heated seat, this price gets much higher.
To install a toilet in the bathroom will cost between $250 and $450. This is separate from the piping installation mentioned above, meaning if you have the pipes already present, and simply want to add in a new toilet, this is the price.
SINKS AND FAUCETS
Sinks and faucets are often the most enjoyable part to pick out when designing your dream bathroom – they give character to the space and help define your style. As a result, sinks and faucets have a near-infinite range of options.
This means that the pricing varies greatly, although generally, you can expect to spend between $300 and $500 for a sink and faucet set.
SEWAGE EJECTOR SYSTEM
A ‘sewage ejector system’ is a set of pumps that helps remove sewage from your system. It’s often necessary for basements because they are below ground and because they are often distant from the remainder of the pipes. ‘Sewage’ doesn’t only apply to waste from a toilet, but also from a laundry room or shower. Roughly 85% of basement plumbing needs this system.
To install a sewage ejector pump will cost between $800 and $1,450, which includes materials and labor.
Adding doors to your bathroom is a necessity and will cost you between $100 and $300 to do so, depending on whether a professional does the work for you.
Fitting a door is fairly straightforward and, as long as you have the physical strength to hang the door while you are fitting it (or you have someone to help you) should be no problem to do yourself.
Like faucets, shower heads come in millions of different styles, shapes, sizes, and qualities. If you’re on a budget, you can find shower heads that cost $20.
If you are building your dream bathroom, you can spend $300 or more on a shower head. The good news is that shower heads are easy to install yourself, so don’t require additional labor.
Most of the cost of a bathtub will be in the installation. The tub itself will cost somewhere between $200 and $2,000, but the installation will add between $1,000 and $5,000 onto that cost. Seniors may also consider walk in tubs that can cost significantly more.
You may also need to bring electricity down to your basement or to wire in some new outlets, light fittings, etc. Electricians generally charge around $70 to $80 per hour for this service. GFCI outlets are recommended in all bathrooms.
QUICK REFERENCE CHART
$320 - $600
$1 - $4 per ft.
$120 - $375
Sinks and Faucets
$300 - $500
Sewage Ejector System
$800 - $1,450
$100 - $300
$200 - $2,000
$70 - $80 per hr.
Once you’ve installed the core elements (above) you can begin to think about extras. The items listed below are not absolutely necessary. However, for those who have decided to make an investment into a basement bathroom, additional features are often worth the additional cost.
Although all of the items listed below are considered ‘extras,’ there are price variations within each of these, so you can always see what room you have left in your budget before you decide.
Ceramic tiles cost between $2 and $20 per square foot, depending greatly on the quality of the tiles. Again, these are tricky – but possible – to install yourself. To have them installed professionally will cost between $5 and $10 per square foot.
Adding a fan to your bathroom will help with ventilation, which is often useful when you don’t have an exterior window, especially in a poorly ventilated basement. In some jurisdictions, a fan may be compulsory under local building codes. Your contractor will be able to advise you on this. A fan will cost between $250 and $500.
As with many other fixtures and fittings, mirrors can be elaborate and expensive, or spartan and cheaper. Generally, though, you’ll spend between $50 and $250 on a mirror, depending on whether they are attached to cabinets or vanities.
Walk-in Shower Unit
An all-tile walk-in shower unit (including tile, shower head, door) that is totally tiled, will cost you between $1,500 and $3,000. Again, this is on the more expensive side, and there are cheaper options. For example, a jet tub, which allows you to shower in the bath, will usually cost $750 to $1,000.
For wall tiles totally surrounding the bath, you will spend between $250 and $375. This will get you custom tiles 48 inches high around the bath.
Cabinets and Drawers
With cabinets and drawers, you can buy ready-made or custom, which affects the price. As a rule of thumb, you’ll spend around $350 to $450 per linear foot.
'EXTRAS' QUICK REFERENCE CHART
$2 - $20
per sq. ft.
$250 - $500
$50 - $250
$1,500 - $3,000
$250 - $375
$350 - $450
Ultimately, installing a basement bathroom is a financial decision more than anything else. If it is within your budget, it is a great way of adding more living space to your home while also increasing the resale value of your house.
As this guide shows, there are certain costs that you can’t – or shouldn’t – avoid. In most cases, it is far better to have a professional plumber install something correctly than to do it yourself with little expertise.