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Shower Room or Bathroom?

By: Chris Hogan MSc - Updated: 19 Oct 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Bath Shower Baths Property Profit

Surveys show that the number of people in the UK who said they prefer a shower over a bath has increased. Many people claim they have taken a bath out and replaced it with a shower. This is almost certainly because of the busier lives we are driven to in order to keep pace with the demands of our society. But is this the death knell for baths?

Bath or Shower Choice

Showers are indisputably quicker than baths and use less water. But a shower can't replace the decadent feel of a long relaxing bath. If you're renovating a bathroom, or extending to increase the number of bathrooms, should you just avoid baths completely?

The answer is that it depends. It depends on why you're doing the work and what type of property you have. Are you renovating purely to sell on for a profit? Or are you renovating to provide a home that fits your long term needs?

Renovating a Bathroom for Profit

If you are looking to make a profit your decision should be informed by what the market wants. And what the market wants will depend on the type of property.

So, for example, if you're renovating a one or two bedroom flat then your market is likely to be young professionals who haven't yet started a family, single adults, or possibly retired people. With the exception of the retired people you probably would not alienate any of those markets if you only provided a shower.

Retired people may well welcome a shower, as they are much easier to get in and out of. But they are more likely to be traditionalists and might like to see a bath as well. It's a tricky one, but if retired people aren't your target market you would probably be safe.

Families Want Proper Bathrooms

On the other hand, families want baths in their bathrooms. Even if the parents only have time for a shower, bathing small children is virtually impossible in a shower. Not only can toddlers be easily washed in a bath, they can get in two or even three at a time. This makes looking after more than one child a great deal easier.

So if you are developing a larger property then not having a bath at all may well put families off, and that's a large part of the market to put off.. With the way house design is going now, developers are looking to put en suite bathrooms into one or more bedrooms, so it's perfectly acceptable for the en suites to be shower rooms and the family bathroom to have a bath.

Renovating or Extending for Yourself

If you are renovating or extending for the longer term then the key is to do what you want. Then later on, when it's time to sell on, change the bathroom to the configuration that will appeal to your target market.

This might sound like unnecessary work but if you are in the house for twenty or thirty years than the bathroom may require refurbishment to get the best sale price. And there's no point living in a house for that length of time without having it the way you want it.

Best of Both Worlds

Can you have the best of both worlds? If you have a large bathroom and are able to fit in a full size bath and separate shower without making it look cluttered then of course you'll be saved the agony of the decision. But then you'd hardly be likely to be reading this article.

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