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If you’re renovating your bathroom, tile is an excellent choice for a shower surround because it resists moisture and the mold and mildew that can grow in a moist environment. Tile also comes in a fantastic array of sizes, shapes, and materials that allow you to create a customized look.
Tile is also easy to maintain and can last for decades. That makes it a cost-effective choice, even if it’s not the least expensive option.
The cost of the tile has a significant effect on your remodeling budget. While you can find basic ceramic tiles starting at about $1 a square foot, tiles of other materials have a more significant price tag. Some designer tiles may cost up to $50 a square foot.
Popular choices for tiles include:
The price per square foot doesn’t mean much until you know how many square feet you want to tile. Multiply the width by the height for each wall of the shower surround to figure out square footage for the shower walls. Multiply the width by the depth of the shower floor, and add the wall and floor square footages together for your total.
Use a tile calculator to figure out exactly how many tiles you’ll need and the total costs. Because there’s always some waste due to cuts for corners and edges, plan on buying at least 10% more tile than the square footage you measured out.
Your choice of tile can affect how much you’ll spend on installation. You’ll generally pay less to have basic ceramic tiles installed, for example. If you go with porcelain, the installer may charge more because porcelain is harder to cut than ceramic tiles.
You may also pay a premium for installation if you select an intricately shaped tile rather than a square or rectangle. Mosaics may also cost more because the installer has to work with tiny pieces.
Expect to pay more if you’re asking the tile installer to create an intricate pattern with tile, or to install decorative pieces that require lots of cuts on the field tiles. These projects simply take more time and skill, and you’re paying for both.
Decorative accents such as mosaic borders or bullnose pieces along the top of the shower add a polished look. But they create more work for the installer, so they will increase the cost of your project.
With the array of options available, you can create an attractive tile shower and still keep within your budget.