Page 5, meet page 3

sueroJanuary 9, 2014

From the New York Times Home section, page 3, reporting on a Houzz survey:

The Rubber Duckie Has Hit the Road
There's a bit of a shocker coming out of the inaugural "2014 Winter Bathroom Trends Study" just released by Houzz, the home remodeling and design website. Bathtubs appear to be out of favor. More than 4 in 10 respondents said they were leaving them out of their new master bathrooms; among respondents 55 and older, more than half are going tub-less.

On page 5 of the same section, same day,

Do Separate Tubs and Showers Appeal to Buyers?

Q. Would our master bathroom be more appealing to buyers if it had a tub that was separate from the shower?

A. A bathroom with a separate tub and shower usually communicates one thing: "luxury," said Patty LaRocco, an associate real estate broker at Town Residential in New York. That's because "it indicates someone spent more time and money on the details," she explained, resulting in a higher-end look.

And that's a good thing when you're selling your home, she said, because "people will pay more for luxury." The only exception "would be if you really don't have the space for it."

Kimberly Peck, an architect in Brooklyn, agreed that separating the shower from the bathtub can make a big difference in the way a bathroom is perceived. "Design-wise, you can get a much more interesting bathroom," she said. "The tub can become a statement piece."

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While it's nice to have a bathroom large enough for both tub and separate shower, if we could only have one I would choose a large shower and forego a tub. We have both and have used the tub once in 17 years. Under NO conditions would I buy a house with the master bath only having a tub/shower combination. Climbing over the side of the tub to take a shower is too dangerous after a certain age and way too inconvenient.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 5:12PM
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They are really talking about two different things:
The over-55 demographic who is probably having a harder and harder time getting in and out of a bathtub, and "luxury" in the design and real estate market. And luxury and practicality aren't always related.

I didn't take a bath in the new bathroom in my old house, not once in several years. But I would not buy a house with No bathtub, from a
practicality standpoint.

But you can see how it's confusing to the remodeling consumer.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 5:19PM
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I used the tub and my husband the shower until we had our bathroom redesigned 6 or 7 years ago and now I use the shower just as he does. With shower heads, handheld sprays, etc., I feel luxuriated in the shower, whereas before, I felt it was a "quickie" bath. The only time we use the tub is when we have guests who prefer it or I am bathing the two granddaughters who are still too young to be left alone in the bath and prefer a tub.
I would have "deleted" the tub entirely from my tub-shower combination in two other bathrooms but my architect son and real estate DIL told me that it could hurt a resale of my house with some agents but that was then and this is now.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 5:21PM
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For a master bath, a tub is not a necessity for most, and I agree with patty0315 that I would do a shower only instead of a tub/shower combo if that is all space permitted if I planned on retiring in this home.

I also agree with ineffable that I wouldn't buy a home without a bathtub at all. When we were looking at different homes in the last city we lived, one we really liked but there was no tub. At all. And we had 1 baby at the time, and now 2. Bathing a child without a tub is a pain.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 5:35PM
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Several years ago we eliminated the only tub in our home. My elderly father used the bathroom and as he became unsteady on his feet, I was fearful of a fall. We were warned that this would hurt us when we sold the house, but it was non-negotiable for me. We sold the house last February, to a young couple with babies on the way. They were not at all concerned about not having a tub, even commented on baths being gross! So as the saying goes, to each his own.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 5:49PM
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DS and DDIL have only a shower in their house. Their little 2 year old daughter has only had showers, and when she stayed at our house she loved to take a "shah-wah" in our master bath because there are two showerheads.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 5:56PM
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When we remodeled the MB 3 years ago we got rid of the tub/shower combo and went to just a shower which we made a bit larger. We have a shower tower with body sprays and I love it. Our hall bath has a tub/shower combo so were good for resale. I always wanted a jacuzzi tub, but our bath isn't big enough. My SIL had one and never used took too long to fill up and the water got cold quickly.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 6:56PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

We have only a shower in the mbath...we put the air jet tub in the en suite guest bath in the lower level where we have more room...

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 7:01PM
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I really enjoy taking a bath, especially when it's so cold. However, our tub is on the small and shallow side. Someday I would love a clawfoot like I grew up with. My parents could fit 3 kids in there pretty easily.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 7:21PM
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My In laws both only took baths all their lives. My father in law is 86 and still only takes baths in his run of the mil tub/shower combo. I know other older adults who love taking whirlpool baths. I would always want a separate shower and standard sized whirlpool tub.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 8:07PM
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When we re did the master bath a few years we stole a piece of my closet and made a 7x4 shower without a door or curtain and no tub. I love it. We do have a tub in the hall bath downstairs. If some one, someday wants a tub, they can fit it in. In the meantime I have my glorious shower.

    Bookmark   January 9, 2014 at 9:22PM
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put me down for one of the "tubs out of favor" group....i'm over 60 now and still agile, but climbing out of a tub is beginning to skeeve me out....i only have a shower in the MB, and i'm considering converting the hall bath with standard tub/shower combination to shower only....some i have seen look fabulous...we have a jacuzzi downstairs, and i find myself using it less and less these days....

joanie, can i ask what shower panel you are using? i've been looking at those for my master, and they seem to run the gamut (horrible to great) in the reviews i've been reading

also, some of the large oval tubs i see in high end remodels just look scary

Here is a link that might be useful: imagine clambering in and out of this

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 10:42AM
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Oh, dear, I am so off-trend. 12 years ago when we remodeled our bathroom, I replaced the shower with a tub-shower (had some extra space, so included a raised boxed level behind for a candle and a glass of water for bubble-time). I usually shower, but gosh, when I want to take a relaxing bath, I don't want to head into the kids' bath, in the hall, and remember to bring all my "stuff". In our new house, once again it's a master shower, and it's lovely, and though I wish it had one, we're not putting in a tub ($$ when we're not doing anything else to the bathroom).

A shower is no guarantee you don't have to step; check this one out! Yes, this is a shower, that little door to the right is the commode.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 11:54AM
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I love my tub and would not buy a house that didn't have one, or didn't have room for one. I agree with others that using a small shallow tub isn't a lot of fun but, fortunately, I have a large deep Kohler soaking tub so taking a bath is like spa time for me.
If I get to the point where it's difficult to use, then I'll use the shower, but for now I consider climbing in and out of the tub good leg exercise. :)

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 12:53PM
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Things really are changing -- I have contemplated removing a tub/shower but really thought a tub in the master was necessary for resale. So many of us don't have the space to do both. I understand the aging trend and it makes sense.

And what if it is the only full bathroom? Would anybody still do that?

Linked below is the full Houzz survey results.

Another interesting thing -- people are split on the "throne privacy issue" with a distinct age difference in response.

Here is a link that might be useful: Houzz Survey

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 2:48PM
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Another who got rid of the tub/shower combo in my master bath when we remodeled. I was able to fit in a nice roomy shower within a very small footprint (room is 5x8...'50s architecture, how I love ya!).

NO regrets, I never take baths and certainly enjoy a nice shower far more in the space. However we do have a tub/shower in the hall bathroom and I didn't switch that out. Went along with the general wisdom of having at least one bathtub in the house. My daughter enjoys baths but she's the only one and when she eventually moves out nobody will be tubbing it any more.


    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 4:45PM
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When I was building, I thought about making the shower into a large walk-in enclosure and not putting in a tub, but the builder talked me out of it. I have 3 full baths, one with a shower only, one other with a tub, but he thought a master should have both. In reading thru the thread, I don't think a tub is as important as one might think, especially if there s at least one in another bathroom. If I were to build again, I would do the large walk-in, and not be talked out of it. I used to love my evening bath when the kids were small, since I thought of it as my time alone to relax. These days a quick shower is enough.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2014 at 4:55PM
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We recently moved from a 1931 house with original bathrooms. Which we never go around to renovating. They had American Standard cast iron bathtubs that were very comfortable. Angled correctly for your back, higher up so you can get a good soak, and the cast iron kept the water hot a good long time. But they were a bit gross just because the finish was so worn off. The one in the kids bathroom was even beginning to bloom rust to the surface.

Our new home was built in the 1980s. The kids bath has a perfectly nice tub/shower combo. Would you believe that my (college age) DD commented on what a bad tub it is to take a bath in?

The MBR has this humongous 6 foot soaking tub in cast acrylic that is actually too large to be comfortable soaking in for me, and I kid you not, takes over 20 minutes to fill with water high enough.

MBR has a dormitory sized shower that is separate from huge tub.

When we eventually remodel, we know we want a large and nice shower. But if I could afford a really nice bath tub, I would probably want one too. But only if I could find one as comfortable as the 1931 American Standard. Probably no way to use vintage, as those usually were set in place before the walls were up due to weight. Being a realist, I would expect to probably not have the tub. More important to have a nice shower that is safe to use as we age in place.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2014 at 8:21AM
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I love a nice, hot soaking bath and would never give up my tub. No jacuzzi tub, but we have a deeper, soaking tub in our master bath. Love it!


    Bookmark   January 11, 2014 at 1:33PM
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We have a tub and separate shower.
Our builder tried to talk us OUT of our jacuzzi tub.
"You'll never use it," he said.
We just laughed.
We use it.
We love it.
DH really relies on it to relieve his aching back.
We would not be likely to buy a house with only a shower in the master bath.
We need both the tub and the shower in there.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2014 at 7:37PM
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