Showers a top choice for renovations, says homeowner survey

Three-quarters of homeowners who were undertaking renovations said in a recent survey that they had upgraded their showers.

The survey of 400 homeowners by home renovation platform Houzz found that 74% of those polled had upgraded their showers, with more than two-thirds (68%) having increased the size of their showers. Almost one third (32%) said they had increased the size of their shower by more than half over the original.

The survey also revealed that one fifth of renovating homeowners chose to remove the bath entirely, with more than four in five (82%) using the space where the bath was for a larger shower.

Of respondents buying or replacing a shower, more than a quarter (28%) opted for a low-profile shower for easy access. Rainfall and waterfall shower heads were by far and away the most popular choice with more than three-quarters (78%) going for that option, closely followed by a handheld shower head (71%), with more than half (59%) choosing thermostatic mixers.

With a growth in the number of multigenerational households, 9% also said they added a seat and 8% grab bars. Digital shower controls were nominated by 6% of those polled.

The median spend for bathroom projects among those surveyed increased by 31% over 2022 at £5,250 and more than four in five (88%) homeowners said they hired a professional to help with their bathroom projects. Of those, two-thirds said they used a generalist tradesperson, with just under half (46%) preferring to use a specialist bathroom fitter.

Houzz staff economist Mariner Sargsyan said: “With major changes such as removing a bath and enlarging a shower, homeowners renovating their bathrooms are enlisting home professionals to bring bathrooms up to date and help carve out more useable space.

“Bathrooms have always been a top room to renovate and we’re seeing that homeowners driven both by aesthetic desires and functional necessities are doubling down on their investment in these private sanctuaries.”

Three out of five renovators surveyed said they upgraded their vanity units (60%) with one in 10 opting for green and blue as colourways. Wall-hung units were chosen by 45% of those polled.

Of the 84% of respondents who said they were changing their toilet, more than one in four of homeowners said they had opted for ‘techy toilets’ with bidet functionality (28%) or automatic or hands-free flushing (24%).

In terms of the styles chosen for bathroom renovations, most respondents (35%) opted for contemporary, with one third (33%) went modern.

For those respondents who were upgrading their baths, 1% separated those going freestanding and those going for alcove types (35% and 34%).

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