Organising a bathroom renovation can be overwhelming. Sure, shopping for things like tiles, bath tubs and taps can be a lot of fun, but when it comes to organising tradies, there is a particular order that things need to be done for the best result. Here’s a quick guide to get you on your way.

What are the key steps in a bathroom renovation?


Perhaps the messiest stage of your renovation! In the demo, everything that’s not needed is removed – tiles, tapware, fittings, shower, bath, toilet, and vanity – to prepare for the installation of a new bathroom. It is project-dependent on who does this; if you have a builder they will likely take care of this stage.

Framing and Rough-In

This is a critical early stage of construction where framing is put up for your walls and ceiling by your builder or carpenter. After the basic framing is complete, we move on to the rough-in. This is where plumbing waste and water pipes are installed in the walls and floor of a bathroom. This is a critical step as you want to make sure that everything is in the correct place. Good planning will make sure you get all of this right. This part is definitely a job for your plumber. But call your electrician in too to put all of the wirings in the framing as well. Make sure you’ve decided where you need power points, lights, and other powered systems such as the exhaust fan.


A screen is a sand and cement mixture with reinforcement built-in. A screed is usually applied on top of the concrete slab to both level bathroom floors and ensure water flows in the right direction in preparation for tiling. Screeds are usually 40-80 mm thick. Another one for your builder!

Wall Sheeting

At this point, your builder, carpenter, or plasterer will hang wall and ceiling sheets. These will then be prepped for their final use – either set for walls, prepared for tiling, or waterproofed for the wet areas.


Being the wettest part of your home, this is an essential stage to any bathroom renovation. Here a waterproof membrane is applied to bathroom floors and walls to create a physical barrier, preventing moisture from penetrating the structure of the home. It is applied before tiles to protect the walls and subfloor. Ensure that you get a qualified waterproofer for this critical stage.


Your floor and wall tiles are next in the process following the waterproofing. It’s an exciting stage as this is when you can see your bathroom sanctuary really start to come to life. Tiling is a 2-step job, starting with the cutting and laying, then finishing with grouting. Some tiles may also need to be sealed, so be sure to check these requirements when selecting your tiles. Get a qualified and experienced tiler for the best results.


The correct order for painting can be a little controversial with different trades, but painting your ceiling and any walls that won’t be tiled are a part of the process. Some people like to do it before tiling, some afterward. Be guided by your other trades or your painter to get the best results for your specific bathroom renovation.


Perhaps the most exciting part of the whole process is getting the final finishing elements added to your new bathroom. Here, various bathroom fixtures including the toilet, bath, vanity, basin and tapware are installed. Whilst your plumber may be able to do all of this, you may also need your carpenter to lend a hand. And not to forget that you’ll need your electrician back as well to fit all of your electrical items such as power points, lights, and exhaust fan.

And voilà! After a final clean-up and some styling, your bathroom sanctuary will now be finished and ready to enjoy.

Good tradies can be hard to find!

Always ensure that your tradies have valid qualifications. You may also want to check their insurance in case something unexpected happens.

Another good tip is to find a tradie through recommendations wherever you can. Often you can also ask for references or speak to a former customer as well for a reference.

Don't be afraid to ask for any of this. A good tradie won’t hesitate to provide you with any documentation or references that you’d like to see.

Now armed with this knowledge, you can have the confidence to follow the conversation with your tradies during your bathroom renovation.