Before and After: A Renter’s $450 Bathroom Redo Is Packed with Personality

published Mar 26, 2021
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About this before & after
Home Type
Project Type
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Rental Friendly
Before: White bathroom with stained wood vanity
Credit: Peter Brzozowski

Rental apartments are generally designed to appeal to the masses, so they’re often outfitted with middle-of-the-road fare. You’re probably not going to find bright pink walls or intricate patterned tile; instead, you’re more likely to get some combo of white and beige.

Credit: Peter Brzozowski

That’s exactly what greeted Peter Brzozowski and his boyfriend when they moved into their 1973 San Francisco apartment. The bathroom connected to their bedroom was nice to have, but was a little bland, with white walls and brown vinyl tile. “It lacked any personality,” Peter says. “Since I spend the beginning and end of my day in here I felt something had to be done to elevate it from the all-white, not very relaxing environment.”

Credit: Peter Brzozowski

Peter wanted tons of color. “Luckily we’re allowed to paint the walls here!” he says. He started with a deep teal accent wall: “I got this beautiful teal paint, painted one wall and then realized I needed to paint the whole bathroom due to its small size,” he says. So he went all-in, painting all the walls that deep teal.

Credit: Peter Brzozowski

The teal walls were a major improvement, but Peter didn’t stop there. He swapped out the vanity’s drab hardware for brass-toned modern beauties, then gave his shower a whimsical peach print shower curtain. Finally, Peter laid down peel-and-stick flooring in a black-and-white pattern that’s way more fun than the old beige stuff. “This was probably the best enhancement and it took the bathroom to the next level,” Peter says.

A couple geometric bathmats and plenty of artwork help make the bathroom feel extra homey — and total cost for everything came to about $450. “I love the patterns, colors, and art,” Peter says. “It no longer feels like a sterile zone and I actually enjoy being in the bathroom now.”

And, Peter says: “I’m proud of what I’ve done when I look at the before.”

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