The word “spa” can mean different things to different homeowners. For some it’s a jacuzzi tub or steam room, for others it’s a massage table or sauna. Or it might simply mean making your master bathroom a spa-like retreat, compete with a steam shower, lounge chair and plenty of amenities for taking care of the body. Historically, spas are places of retreat to make the body feel better, either through mineral baths, herbal remedies or massage. Remodeling your home to accommodate a spa, regardless of what the spa entails, should involve creating an indulgent space that is relaxing and rejuvenating.

Rising trends in spa remodels

According to the National Association of Home Builders, home renovation saw a 5 point increase in the remodeling industry for 2012 and today, the interest for creating personalized spas as part of a master bathroom experience is following suit. The National Kitchen & Bath Association reports that there has been a rising trend in shower designs alone, with about a third of their designers specifying lighting inside the showers, 70% designing showers with benches or seats, and an increase in steam shower specifications. In general, homeowners are requesting convenience and pleasure in their master bath with comfort-height toilet seats, radiant heat flooring and plenty of space to relax. A spa-like bathroom may mean luxury, but that doesn’t have to mean your remodel has to have a ridiculous price tag. Having a plan for your expenses will help you decide how to get the most luxury for your dollar.

Types of indoor spa renovations

There are several types of spa remodeling projects to consider and costs will be determined on what design you require. The addition of spa facilities like a dry sauna or jacuzzi tub can vary in cost and will depend on the size, type of install, and design you want. You can hire a pro to design and build your sauna, or there are kits you can consider for a DIY project that can be installed by most people with basic hand tools, and these can save costs considerably. Keep in mind that large spa equipment may require extra costs aside from the cost of the materials and installation. Your bathroom or spa room may require additional electrical and plumbing needs, floors may need to be reinforced, ventilation and exhaust fans may need to be installed and permits may need to be filed.

Another popular spa item is having a massage area, or therapeutic equipment area, in the home, either in the mater bathroom area, in-home gym area or near the outdoor pool.  A basic massage table can start around $150 and go up from there, specialty equipment can cost hundreds if not thousands of dollars. Aside from a massage table, many massage rooms also have other spa-like amenities like sound proofing, high-quality linens, non-skid flooring, mirrors or speakers for sound.

Updating your master bathroom to appear more spa-like can be a way of adding a “spa” to your home without major equipment needs. Having a spa experience in the bathroom would include upgrades like a steam shower, large soaking tub, radiant heat flooring, upgraded linens, contemporary materials like natural stone, updated fixtures, and plenty of storage. You might also consider upgrading the exhaust system, electrical layout, and adding high tech gadgets like hidden televisions and speakers. The national average cost for renovating a bathroom, which includes expanding the space, 2-sink vanity and additions like in-floor heating and upgraded materials, is about $51,000. Adding more spa-like amenities would obviously add to your material, labor, permitting, delivery and installation costs.

Determining your spa remodel budget

Before you can ascertain your budget, first ask yourself why you want to create a spa in your home. For example: What is my motivation for this project? How do I plan to use this space? What am I willing to compromise on? What is my style? How long do I plan to live here? Deciding what a reasonable amount is to spend on your indoor spa renovation is essential, especially when it comes time for resale. If resale value is a priority for your project, you’ll want to plan and budget for a spa remodel that’s proportional for your home and the properties in your neighborhood. For instance, if most of the homes in your neighborhood have a value of about $200,000, a new spa suite complete with a full sauna could actually be seen as an eccentric personalized feature, decreasing your home’s perceived value when it’s time to sell. In a home worth about $2 million, a bathroom that feels like a spa might be expected. If you haven’t already, get your Porch Home Report to determine the approximate value of your property and visit to find out the improvement projects that have been completed for listed homes near you.

Still need help deciding what you need to include in your next indoor spa renovation? Find a pro to help you get started.

Top image credit: Jennifer Post Design, Inc.