How to Combine Two Adjacent Bathrooms
LESLIE: Steven in Texas, you’ve got The Money Pit. How can we help you today?
STEVEN: I have two bathrooms, side by side. They’re divided by one wall. I’m thinking of taking the wall out and combining the two bathrooms.
TOM: You should approach this project very carefully, Steven, and here’s why: because the number of bathrooms in a house is – has a direct relationship with the value of a house. There’s a difference between a house with two bathrooms and a house with one bathroom and a house with one full bath and one half-bath. So if you’re going to eliminate an entire full bathroom from the house, that will reduce your home value.
Now, that might be OK if you’re not concerned about that or you just want a bigger bathroom and you’re just kind of willing to deal with that. But unfortunately, the way homes are valued – and you can check with a local realtor and ask this very same question. I think you’re going to get a similar answer. Will your home be worth less if you combine two bathrooms into a single bathroom? And I think the answer is going to be yes.
LESLIE: Yeah. But Steven, I’m all for quality of life. If you want that big bathroom, you should have a big bathroom.
STEVEN: It’s something I’ve been kind of dreaming/thinking about for quite some time and …
TOM: Well, then, maybe you should do it. We just don’t want you to do it without having all the facts.
STEVEN: Would I have to bust the slab out in order to relocate drainage pipes?
TOM: Yes. If you’re not going to put the fixtures back in the same place, you will have to break the slab out to get the pipes where you want them. You’re going to probably end up extending the drain line to where the old location used to be. So, yes, there is going to be some demolition involved in that project, as well.
STEVEN: OK. Now, what is that going to do to the structural integrity of the slab?
TOM: Oh, it won’t – well, it’s obviously going to destroy the slab in that area but the slab is not load-bearing in the areas where you’re going to be breaking it apart. It’s not – it won’t have an effect on the foundation, because you won’t be impacting the exterior walls. You’re going to be breaking apart the slab in the thinner sections where it’s 4 or 5 inches thick.
STEVEN: OK. Alright. I appreciate it.
TOM: Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.