Does a Bathroom Need a Bath?

Bathroom with a walk-in shower

With the shower having gained in popularity over the last forty years in the UK there are whole generations who have grown up preferring the convenience of a shower rather than a bath. So does that mean that in your renovation you can dispense with the bath altogether?

The answer is, of course, it depends. And the things it depends on are your long-term plans for the property, the people living in the home, and your personal preference.

Are Showers Tops?

It’s not really surprising that showers have gained in popularity as they fit modern lives far better than baths do. A shower is ready to step into within seconds whereas a bath takes a long time to fill and get to the right temperature. Once you’ve finished washing you can be rinsed properly too, as opposed to sitting in the soap and dirt mixture that you’ve just cleaned off your body.

Then there’s the ecological argument – a two minute shower with a modern low-flow head uses about a quarter to a fifth of the amount of water that a typical bath would consume. And the water doesn’t need to be so hot for a shower either, so energy is saved there too. So you can shower every morning with a clean conscience.

What about Baths?

But let’s hear it for baths too. It’s easier to scrub clean in a bath because the soap isn’t being permanently washed off, like it is in a shower, and the soap and dirt in the water is a really infinitesimal amount, it looks far worse than it is. It’s also very difficult to wash babies and toddlers in showers, a bath is the only really practical way of doing that.

Then there’s nothing like the indulgence and peace of a relaxing, undisturbed bath, particularly with a good book and some candles, if you’re that way inclined. I’ve even watched Match of the Day in the bath, in a hotel room which had a screen built into the wall over the taps.

What are your Plans for the Property?

So what’s the right decision for you? If you are renovating a property to sell on and make money then you have to think about what the buyers will be looking for. To take a bath out of a family house would be commercial suicide, particularly if it’s the only bathroom in the house.

You would restrict the number of people who would look at the house to a tiny number. In fact you’d probably sell it, eventually, to someone who would be immediately reinstalling a bath and would knock you down on the price because of it.

Situations Where you can Ditch the Bath

If there are more bathrooms though, you may only really need to have a bath in the main family bathroom. you can then get away with just showers in the others, en-suites or downstairs bathrooms. It is far more acceptable, particularly with en-suites, to only have a shower, and it’s cheaper to install too.

With studio apartments and small flats you are more likely to be able to do away with the bath because you don’t have to cater for children. In fact you can turn it to an advantage, making a really sumptuous and spacious shower room where squeezing a bath in would have made it appear more cramped.

Exercising Your Rights at Home

What happened to your preference then? Well, that’s comes in when you are renovating the home, or just the bathroom, for your own long-term use. In that case you can do whatever you want, just be aware that when you finally come to sell the property you may have to put it back the way it was.

See Also
Modern bathroom
Things to Consider When Improving Your Bathroom
A domestic wheelchair lift
Making your Home Accessible