Remodeling the bathroom will not only make you feel more luxurious in your own home, it can help the resale value of your house as well. Typically, you will recoup about 65 percent of the remodeling costs when you sell your home. Of course, that depends on how complex the project was and how much you paid for the remodel. Deciding to update a bathroom can entail a quick paint and tile job or a complete change in the layout. Below are some steps for successful results.

1. Decide whether you want to make surface alterations or do a complete overhaul.

Do you want to take a sledgehammer to your old tub and shower, or can you cover the existing tub with a bathtub liner? Liners are not a permanent solution, but they can update a grimy-looking bathtub or shower for a few more years, until you’re ready for the big overhaul. If you aren’t going to move any plumbing, you may be able to tackle a lot of the work yourself. However, if you want to move the sink to another wall or have the shower enclosure retiled in a Spanish revival pattern, you might need to hire a contractor.

2. Finalize your budget.

Knowing how much you can spend can help you determine exactly what you can accomplish. A surface remodel can be relatively inexpensive. A basic remodel that includes installing a new tub, toilet, counter and sink, ceramic tile surround, and flooring costs approximately $15,000.

3. Decide whether you need a professional for the job.

Plumbing and electrical work can be tricky and can have dramatic consequences if not completed properly. If you don’t know what you’re doing, don’t do it at all. Hire a professional for the dirty work. Minor changes, like painting, adding wainscoting, and redoing the floor can be done yourself, even if you’re not an expert.

4. Start with color.

A fresh coat of paint on the walls or cabinets can completely change the atmosphere. It can transform a tiny powder room into a cozy nook or a boring master bath into a tropical retreat. Think fresh, cool tones that relax you at night and give you a boost in the morning. You can be a little more daring with the color of your bathroom walls than you are with the walls in the rest of the house—it will be your little secret.

5. Make the space work for you.

If you’re updating the space anyway, think about your needs instead of just going generic. Would you rather have drawers under your sink than large cabinets? Do you prefer standing in a shower to stepping over the edge of a tub every day? If you want to enjoy your newly created space, think about what you use and how you use it before investing in the project. Solid planning can help you avoid any pitfalls once the renovation begins.

Wherever you start, have the final goal in mind. A designer can help you plan the renovation so you don’t make any mistakes that you might regret. Whether you’re completely gutting the bathroom or simply giving it a new look with some color, be meticulous. Solid work will guarantee great results.