An extra shower in the house can sound (and feel) like a luxury—especially when you’re hosting overnight guests or have a growing family.
But all showers are not created equal. While corner, stall, and walk-in showers save space, they may require that you make some sacrifices.
Whether you’re considering installing one in an entirely new bathroom, or just thinking about adding one to an existing half bathroom, consider some of the compromises you may have to make to get clean in tight quarters.
Space is at a premium
Even the trimmest bathers can feel as if the glass walls are closing in on them in a corner shower. A general rule of thumb for walk-in showers is that they should offer at least 36×36 inches of space. Anything less and you may feel a bit claustrophobic.
Standard prefab shower kits are popular because they’re affordable and don’t require a ton of space. They typically range in size from 31×31 inches up to 36×48 inches.
Before you commit, find a showroom with models that you can step inside, and see if there’s enough area for you to feel comfortable while you shower. But don’t just step in, pretend you’re showering…
Will you be able to reach…everything?
Consider if you can bend and stretch comfortably.
- Will you be able to shampoo your hair without your elbows banging into the sides?
- Can you lather up all of your body parts the way you’re used to?
- Who doesn’t drop the soap from time to time? If you bobble a bar in your bathtub, it’s an easy retrieval. In a tight stall? Not so much.
- Will you be able to shave your legs or your face if that’s part of your daily ritual?
If not, you may want to reevaluate.
What about resale value?
It seems like having an extra shower would boost your resale value, right? Maybe so…maybe not.
Many homeowners feel like adding an extra shower will certainly add value. But it depends upon whether buyers will see it as useful. If you add a shower that isn’t going to be used by anyone, then the cost of adding one isn’t a sure bet for adding value.
So, for instance, if you are adding a totally new stall shower to a master bedroom that had no master bath at all, and the competing homes in the price range do not have one, then there is a good chance you’ll be adding value.
However, if you add a stall shower to a powder room off of the kitchen, or in the basement, it may not be something buyers envision themselves using all that much, and they may not see the value of having it.
As with any home improvement, do give thought to whether or not the amount you are spending will produce a return on your investment, and seek the advice of a trusted real estate agent for his or her insight.
But it doesn’t always boil down to making money on a home improvement. Sometimes the improvement is simply for your enjoyment of the home. So, if a stall shower is something that will improve your life, then go right ahead! Install and enjoy…after you’ve considered if it’s the right fit (literally and figuratively) for you and your home!