How to Select Fixtures for Your New-Construction Bathroom

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If you’ve never remodeled a bathroom before, you might not have given much thought to bathroom fixtures. You will quickly learn that the faucet is not a utilitarian piece of hardware like you might have imagined — it is considered a design focal point. Choosing a faucet is one of the first major decisions you’ll be asked to make in your design scheme since your choice will determine the placement of the rough plumbing pipes for your sink. Here are some tips for selecting the perfect fixtures for your bath.

Decide on a Budget

Clean contemporary bathroom sinkImage via iStock

Setting a spending limit for yourself in advance will keep you from being led astray by all the beautiful designs on the market. Since the fixtures are such an important element in your bathroom design, you might want to set both firm and soft spending limits — in other words, an amount you feel comfortable dedicating to fixtures, and a second amount that you simply will not exceed, no matter how much you fall in love with the latest designer option.

Know Your Priorities

You’re going to be quickly overwhelmed by choices when you select your fixtures, so go in with a firm grasp of what is important to you. Do you want an environmentally friendly low-flow faucet? If someone in your family has mobility issues, you may want a faucet that’s activated by motion or touch instead of by twisting a handle. Are you willing to sacrifice style to stay within your budget, or is it important to you to have a trend-setting design?

Coordinate Your Colors

Bathroom fixtures come in a dizzying array of styles. Polished chrome has been the industry standard, but you might also choose bronze, antique or polished brass, chrome in a matte or brushed finish, brushed or pearl nickel, stainless steel, black, copper, iron, or gold. You’ll want to choose a finish that matches your towel racks and other hardware and coordinates with your color scheme. Polished surfaces are shiny, but they tend to show every smudge and fingerprint. Brushed metals are a better choice if you have children or a more casual lifestyle.

Keep Your Style in Mind

Can you express the overall style of your home in three words or less? Some adjectives you might use include warm, inviting, cozy, formal, elegant, traditional, modern, cutting edge, minimalist, luxurious, cute, retro, and antique. Don’t get drawn into a sleek modern waterfall fixture if the theme of your home’s decorating is a cozy retro look. Similarly, you don’t want to choose an arching, sculptural faucet for a country-style bath, or a cute retro-style fitting for an elegant, formal home. This may seem obvious, but it’s easy to wander off your decorating path when you’re away from home and become infatuated with a clever design.

Fixtures may look like an afterthought to someone who’s never redesigned a bathroom, but they are really foundational to both the appearance and function of the room. Selecting the right set for you is a question of budget, style, and personal priorities.

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