Luxury bathrooms are undergoing a makeover in recent years, according to a new survey about trends in new construction by the Home Innovation Research Labs, which surveyed about 1,400 home builders earlier this year.
“Since the recession, there has been a lot of trade-offs,” says Ed Hudson, director of HIRL’s market-research division, a subsidiary of the National Association of Home Builders.
What’s out? Whirlpool bathtubs and stand-alone bidets, down 9.4 percent and 34.9 percent, respectively, since 2008.
What’s in? His-and-hers shower stalls and chrome lavatory sink faucets, up 12.9 percent and 25 percent, respectively. A standard bathtub has also increased in popularity by 9.5 percent since 2008.
In some cases, buyers are toning down guest bathrooms and placing more emphasis on the master suite, says Scott Hobbs, president of Hobbs Inc., a custom home builder in New Canaan, Conn. But they’re making the bathroom less showy and more contemporary since the recession, adds Leo Birov, founder of Heritage Luxury Builders in Northfield, Ill.
"Everything looks more transitional now," Birov told The Wall Street Journal. Popular features he sees include heated floors, steam showers, and computerized controls.
In general, new homes today are less ornate than they were in the housing boom, says April Saxe, a real estate professional with Houlihan Lawrence, which sells multimillion-dollar homes in New York. “The [whirlpool] tub has certainly been on the way out,” she told The Wall Street Journal. Instead, buyers are looking to use the space for a soaking tub or a shower stall.
Source: “Homeowners Jettison Whirlpool Tubs,” The Wall Street Journal (Oct. 2, 2014)Jesse@DomainRealtyGroup.com