Small Bath Remodel: ‘Handyman Special’ To Spa Bath Transformation

Midtown, Tallahassee

Lead Designer: Kristi Williams,  Project Manager: Jim Ledman / Mike Johnson

Small Bath BeforeLuxury Bath After

Drag slider to see the transformation of this small bath remodel !

McManus Kitchen and Bath is the only licensed remodeling contractor in Tallahassee with a full service showroom. Our unique design build approach makes the remodeling process easier, ensuring higher quality results and a more enjoyable experience.  If you’d like to explore a project with us you can contact us to schedule a consult. 

Small Bath Remodel

This small bath remodel was in an older home in Midtown. It was a poorly done addition that the previous owner had done. The bathroom was barely funtional with a leaky, moldy shower, bad lighting and no venitallation. 

We scheduled a design and budget consult with the client and came up with a plan to transform the space that included moving a window to allow for a larger vanity and linen storage, adding a pocket door and creating a more open, easy to maintain shower. 

Project Highlights

Start Date: Oct 25,2022

Completion Date: Dec 13th 2022

Total Cost: $62,804

Key Updates:

  • Moved Window
  • Opened Up Shower
  • Pocket Door and Custom Storage
  • Better Lighting and Ventillation

Very Sweet Words of Thanks From The Client: 

“My heart hurts so much to see the before photos – beyond being embarrassing, they speak to our utter despair with that room and being overwhelmed for so many years.

But honestly, I am so pleased and comfortable in my new space that I don’t even think about that horrible situation anymore. I told Kristi that for the first time ever, I actually missed my bathroom when we were on vacation last month!

You might consider a name change to McManus Kitchen, Bath and Miracles :-). ” 

Want Some Inspiration In Your Inbox? 

Even a small bath remodel can make a huge difference. Moving a window was key to being able to update this bathroom with more storage, better lighting and an improved layout. 

Small Bath Remodel


This bathroom was a poorly done “handyman special” done by the previous homeowner.

It was terrible. It lacked storage and proper lighting, the shower was moldy and impossible to clean and it just plain looked bad. Even though this was the master bathroom they almost never used it.

Main Issues With Current Space

The bathroom was an eyesore and the shower would not come clean no matter how hard they tried. The vanity was small and there was a lot of wasted space in the bathroom.

Project Goals

Though this was a small bath remodel it was the primary bath so they wanted to be a funcitional as possible.

Their list of goals included adding a pocket door, better storage, better ventillation and a nicer shower.  The big concerns were moving a window in a brick wall and adding the pocket door in a load bearing block wall.

Before Floorplan Vs After Floorplan

Small bath remodel before plan

Small Bath Remodel Before: small vanity, closet like shower, bad ventilation and wasted space. 

small bathroom remodel after plan

After: Large vanity, lots of light, great ventillation and a gorgeous shower with custom glass. 

Small Bath Remodel

Scope Of Work

This small bath remodel was a complete gut renovation. Critical Parts of this project were installing a pocket door in a block wall and moving a window in a brick wall at the front of the house. These were challenging elements but nothing we had not tackled before.

  • Demo Bath – Remove everything
  • Remove transom window, frame for new window over toilet
  • Remove load bearing block wall, add header and frame pocket door
  • new shower plumbing – new location
  • Add plugs, move switches
  • Add lighting, add ventillation (110 CFM bath fan)
  • New Shower with 1/2 wall and rain glass enclosure
  • larger vanity with linen cabinet
  • Upgrade toilet – same location
  • Add ceiling lighting, bath fan and sconces at vanity
  • New pocket door and custom storage with hamper
  • New double hung window

Before / After Photos

small bath shower transformation
Small bath update
small bath remodel vanity and storage
small bath remodel vanity update

Challenges And Solutions

There were a few challenges we knew about before starting and few surprises along the way.

We knew there was some wood rot in the shower area but because we did not know the extend of the damage we left that out of the contractor price and would address it as a change order after demo.

During demo the block wall turned out to be more of a challenge than expected there was some poured concrete mixed in with the block and the walls had been plastered with cement making demo more difficult.

So difficult in fact that our subcontracted demo crew quit on day 2! We had been working with this crew for more than a year and had done a dozen or more projects together but on this job they acted very unprofessionally. Needless to say we will not be hiring them again.

Fortunately though we had another demo partner who was able to respond quickly and we only lost a day of project time. The change in demo teams cost more money but of course we absorbed that. The new crew did a fantastic job.

The only other issue on the project was a backordered mirror. Even though we ordered the mirror 3 months before the project started it did not arrive until 2 weeks after the project was complete!  It’s a gorgeous mirror though so worth the wait.


  • Proposed project start date:  Oct 25th, 2022

  •  Actual Project Start Date: Oct 25th, 2022

  • Proposed Completion Date: Dec 7th, 2022

  • Actual Completion Date: Dec 13th (except for a backordered mirror that did not arrive until 2 weeks later) 

Budget vs Final Price

The budget we presented for this project was $56,193. The final fixed price proposal we presented was for $$61,117, about 8% more than the original budget.

The main reasons for the increase was a material spluge on the rain glass shower enclosure (totally worth it) and labor costs came in a little higher than we projected.

There were a few change orders on the project so the final total was $62,804

Change Orders

From the beginning we were planning on a change order for the hidden woodrot we knew was in the shower. There were also two other change orders on this small bath remodel project.

  • Change order to repair wood rot was $825
  • The client requested a change order to replace the trim in the master bedroom which cost $755 (base, door and window trim).
  • The client added some accessories which cost $106.

    Small Bath Remodel

    Materials and Fixtures:

    • Cabinets Counters and hardware
      • RTA Cabinets from JSI Cabinetry
      • Silestone Eternal Gold Countertops installed by A1 Granite
      • Upton Door Style in Brown Stain Finish
      • Contemporary Metal Pull from Richelieu
    • Shower and Tile
      • Bedrosians Cloe 2.5 x 8″ Ceramic Tile in baby blue for the Shower
      • Bedrosians Cloe 2.5″ x 8″ Ceramic Tile in White Outside the shower
      • Bath floor tile from Crossville Tile: Extract by Stile 12×24
    • Fixtures and Accessories
      • Delta Linden Monitor Shower Fixtures
      • Kohler Hint Vanity Faucet
      • Fluted Glass Indoor/Outdoor Sconces from West Elm
      • Broan Flex 110 CFM Bath Fan
      • Vertical Rain Texture Shower Glass From Glass Pro Shop

    Before Photos

    Final Project Photos

    Estimate from a Remodeling Contractor

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