Tub, Shower, or Both: Which is Right for Your Bath Design?

June 28, 2024

There are many key style and functionality decisions to consider when planning a new bath design for your Gainesville home. One choice that tends to elicit strong opinions is whether to include a tub, shower, or both in your new bathroom. Why is this? Your decision is driven by not only space and style factors but also personal preferences around whether you like to soak in the tub or step under a relaxing shower. It is also impacted by your family’s needs, the number of bathrooms in your home, whether you plan to sell your home, and more.

Tub or Shower: The Key to Your Bathroom’s Layout

Bathroom design trends have seen more people opt to remove a tub in favor of a more luxurious shower enclosure in recent years. This can be seen in a 2023 Houzz bathroom trend report that indicated more than 25% of homeowners surveyed opted to ditch the tub in favor of an improved showering experience. Where bathtubs were previously a staple of most bath designs, more people are designing their homes to fit personal preferences.

View of a bathroom

Your final decision must fit your needs for the lifespan of your remodel. You must ask yourself what your family requires, how long you plan to stay in your home, and which option will help your resale value if you do plan to move. If you are a young family with small children then retaining a tub in your home makes sense, whereas designing for aging in place necessitates a walk-in shower that is safer and more easily accessible. Consider your personal preferences when making this decision. Some of us still love an old-fashioned soak in the tub, while others find this a waste of time and prefer the convenience of a shower.

The number of bathrooms in your home is another key factor in deciding whether to keep or ditch the tub. If you are designing a master bath and already have a tub in your hall bathroom, then you may not feel the need to keep a tub in your new remodel. If you only have one main bathroom then it may be prudent to keep at least one tub in your home, especially if you intend to sell in the near future.

Choosing a tub, shower, or a combination must also be based on your available space. A sizable bathroom design often has ample space for both a sleek, modern freestanding tub and a large, luxurious shower. In this case, you can keep both without compromising your shower experience. Your final choice will influence your bathroom’s layout and how it fits together with your vanity placement, toilet position, tile designs, recessed storage, and more.

Let’s explore some of the benefits of each option further to help you make your decision.

Benefits of a Bathtub

Bathtubs are ideal for homes with children as it makes bathing them so much easier. There are solutions to work around bathing children in a shower including a shower seat, adjustable handheld showerhead, and non-slip surfaces. However, a tub is generally a much easier and more enjoyable solution in a home with small children. After all, it’s a little bit more difficult to play with all those fun bath toys in a shower!

While some of us lose our taste for bathtime as adults and prefer a shower experience, this is certainly not the case for everyone. There are well-known benefits to soaking in the bath, including relaxation. Baths, especially when paired with your favorite bath salts, provide amazing stress relief and muscle relaxation. This can be especially beneficial if you are into your exercise. For example, nothing beats a soak after a long-distance run to loosen up the muscles and joints.

Bathtubs, particularly sleek freestanding models in a spacious bath design, bring a unique aesthetic appeal to your Gainesville home. There are many shapes, sizes, and design features that let you personalize your style, especially when paired with a tub filler to enhance your design. They also immediately give your bathroom a luxurious, spa-style feel that no other design feature can replace.

View of a bathroom

Finally, retaining at least one tub in your Gainesville home can be important for resale value, especially if you live in an area popular with families. Luxurious freestanding tubs are also a unique selling point that can set your home apart from others on the market. Their visual appeal and popularity are sure to attract many potential home buyers.

Advantages of a Shower

Showers are a staple of any modern bathroom design and come in styles, sizes, and price ranges to fit any home’s requirements. For many of us, nothing beats a luxurious shower experience to wake you up as you start your day or to wind down at the end of the evening.

View of a bathroom

For today’s busy lifestyles, showers offer convenience and efficiency as they are a much faster way to get clean than waiting to fill a bath and then go for a soak in the tub. Showers are also a universal design feature that works for almost all ages and abilities. In a spacious shower enclosure, you can also include features like a built-in bench, non-slip surfaces, grab bars, recessed storage for easy access to toiletries, and multiple showerheads. You can also go for a thresholdless or even an open shower style that makes it easy to maneuver in and out of the shower.

Showers are also an excellent way to maximize space in a more compact bath design. If your bathroom is not spacious, a shower enclosure generally offers more bang for your buck in the space you have available. They also tend to make a bathroom appear and feel larger, especially if you go for a sleek frameless glass door or a more open-style shower. Even in a compact bath design, a thresholdless alcove shower with a glass partition gives your room a great sense of depth and space and lets light shine throughout your room.

View of a bathroom

Showers also have the benefit of being more energy efficient than baths as they typically use less water. This can depend on your showerhead, how long you spend in the shower, and how full you like to fill the tub. Not only is this good for the environment as it reduces your water usage, but it also saves on home energy bills!

Regular cleaning and long-term maintenance are a top factor you should consider when selecting your bathroom design features. You will need to clean and maintain this space for years to keep it looking good as new, so you want to include design features that will be simple to maintain. Showers tend to be lower maintenance, especially if you choose frameless enclosures, open showers, and large format tiles that are simpler to clean.

Combining a Tub and Shower

Not sure which is right for your bath design? Or are you designing a compact family bathroom? A combination tub/shower offers versatility and flexibility. An alcove tub with showerheads gives you the best of both worlds in a single space and is ideal for accommodating different family members’ needs and preferences. It is also a practical choice for a family home or when you are remodeling to sell your home.

Even if a tub/shower combo was not your first choice when creating your new bath design, there are many features you can add to personalize this space and create a shower experience that will enhance your home. You may be surprised at the range of style and functionality features available for tub/shower combos. Select a tub style and height that fits your space and practical needs. Pair it with tile walls and a glass door or shower curtain to personalize your space. Include showerheads and a tub filler that enhances your design with the style and finish.

So Which One is Right For Your Bath Design?

When choosing key features like atub or shower for your Gainesville bathroom design, there are many factors to examine. Which one os the best fit for your remodel depends on several key considerations, including:

If you love a soak in the bath, then keep the tub and find an option that fits your available space, style, and budget. On the other hand, if you prefer a luxurious shower experience then don’t be afraid to ditch the tub in favor of a larger shower packed with features that will enhance your daily life. View more amazing shower and tub styles when you visit our Gainesville showroom, and then speak to a member of our design team to start planning your ideal bath remodel!