help with small bathroom remodel

SyrahFLApril 5, 2013

My master bathroom is teeny, 5x8. I have attached a crude layout here. I don't see a way to change the layout, but if anyone has ideas, I would love to hear them!

My bigger question is whether I should convert the bathtub to a walk-in shower. I would really prefer this (and the house has a second bathroom with a tub), but I am getting conflicting opinions on whether the space is too small for a shower. Thoughts?

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My master is 4x8 and has only a shower. The shower interior is 30" x48". Still crummy and small...but it is what it is!

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 9:09AM
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So you probably have an in swinging door at the bottom of your layout. Can you put a pocket door in there instead. That would save some space that is taken up by the door swing.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 2:38PM
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Any closets to pull space from?

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 2:50PM
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If it's big enough for a bathtub, it's big enough for a shower. Many people shower in a 60x30 bathtub, and the standing space in a tub is about 24" wide, at the bottom of the bathing well, so a 60 x 30 shower is actually more comfortable than showering in a tub the same size.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 3:15PM
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Are you gutting it?

A curbless walk-in shower might be a good option, especially if you're planning on living in the house into old-age or might sell to an older couple. Not having to step in and out of a tub to shower is a big plus, and having no curb at all is even better. Nothing to trip on.

I did a similar sized bath in our basement. Started as a powder room, but I had to gut it and open the floor to deal with a drain issue. Took the opportunity to add a shower and reconfig the room.

Just wide enough for a tiny sink and toilet (30" is the width you need for a toilet to make code) and a shower on the opposite wall. I put in a corner shower to make the room feel larger, and I needed to maintain access to the cleanout at the bottom of my drain stack.

You can see by my tiles (12x12) that my finished space is actually about 4' 4" x 7' 6". Less than your 5 x 8 space.

If I hadn't needed to have access to the stack, and had those extra inches, I might have done a larger shower. This one is 3 x 3.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 5:45PM
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Thanks for the thoughts. I didn't intend to gut it, but due to a mold problem, it is done to bare walls. I am trying to look at this as an opportunity instead of a problem! :)

A pocket door is an interesting idea. I will have to play around with the layout, although the plumbing changes might start becoming too expensive.

Unfortunately there is no way to expand the space -- next to a hallway.

I think I'm going to go with a shower. It's what I want, and I agree that showering in a tub is the same as converting that space to a walk-in shower.

Thanks again.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 10:05AM
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So the toilet is on display any time the door is open?* If cost isn't a big issue, I would move the toilet to the space behind the door where the vanity is now and move the vanity to the wall where the toilet is.

Given a choice, I'd take a walk-in shower in a heartbeat over a tub-shower combo. You might even have enough space to not install a door, just a walk-through. I like the 3rd photo because it gives the illusion of more space in the rest of the room. My sister built one of these and I love it!

Contemporary Bathroom by Winter Park Architect Lamar Design

Contemporary Bathroom by South Burlington Design-build Peregrine Design Build

Traditional Bathroom by Rehoboth Beach Home Builders Echelon Custom Homes

*Where I grew up, the rectory at our church was remodeled, so, of course, everyone was curious. They probably had an open house, but I don't think I was invited. In any case, we all had to looky-loo on the way by. As you passed by in your car, if the front door was open and the bathroom door at the end of the hall was open, you got a perfect view of the toilet (seat up) framed in the bathroom doorway. From the street. Even at 10 I could tell that wasn't a great idea.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 3:24PM
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I like suzannesl's idea to swap location of vanity and toilet. Another plus is you can put changing clothes on the vanity next to the shower. It is the problem we have in our master bathroom, there is 7-8 feet between shower and a place to put clean changing clothes.

We are planning for remodeling 3 bathrooms. I may steal the idea in the 3rd photo. suzannesl, thank you for sharing.

TorontoTim, your bathroom is wonderful. Please post photos when it is completed.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 8:51PM
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