Bathtub or Shower Remodel – Which is Best for You?

bathtub or shower remodel or both

When you consider all the aspects of a bathroom remodel, the modifications and replacements of fixtures and features, showers and bathtubs are two of the most significant elements in a bathroom renovation. You will likely choose between one or the other for a remodel. There are certain advantages and disadvantages to both as far as expense, return on investment, aesthetics, labor involved, and a whole host of practical considerations.

Unless you have a generous budget and the necessary square footage to carry off both a shower and bathtub remodel, you will likely choose between the two. Are you partial to replacing the tub with a shower stall, or do you feel more inclined to make room to change from a shower to a bathtub?


There are many decisions that need to be made when remodeling a bathroom. 3Rs Construction & Remodeling is here to help as your trusted contractor in Salem, Oregon.

Many Different Shower & Bathtub Styles to Choose

Similarities of Showers & Bathtubs

Each is Sold in a Wide Range of Styles

You can find showers in the form of stalls enclosed with doors or curtains and walk-in showers without doors or curtains.

As far as bathtubs are concerned, they are available in standard, claw-foot, soaking (deeper and wider than standard), freestanding (disconnected from the wall), walk-in varieties, and whirlpool (with built-in water jets).

Each is Made of Multiple Materials

If you’re in the market for a bathtub, you will see them in various materials, from the more affordable acrylic to high-end enamel-coated cast iron. Showers are available in several materials, including fiberglass to the more costly natural stone.

Each Offer Therapeutic Water Flow Options

The whirlpool tubs come equipped with built-in jets that release massaging blasts of water into the tub. Showers can feature rainfall or waterfall shower heads that soothingly release water.

Advantages of a Bathtub Remodel

Bathtub Remodel

Tubs are Usually Cheaper to Install

Most likely, a bathtub will cost you anywhere from $400 to $8,000 to install. Conversely, a shower ranges from $450 to $10,000. You could get away with paying an average of $4,500 for a whirlpool tub installation, which is less than three-fourths of what you will pay for a walk-in shower – that will cost $6,000, on average.

Bathtubs are Important to Resale Value

A major selling point for homebuyers when it comes to a master bedroom is having a bathroom that includes a tub. In fact, 51 percent of home purchasers are opposed to a master bathroom with just a shower stall, according to a National Association of Home Builders survey. This includes married and single homebuyers, in addition to people who have or plan to have children.

However, there is no available data indicating that a bathtub actually does bring in a higher return on investment at the time the home is sold.

More Advantages of Bathtub Remodels

  • Freestanding units can be placed almost anywhere because they are finished on all sides.
  • Wide array of design choices – material, style, tile surrounds, etc.
  • Ample special features that are available and include whirlpool versions, air jets, etc.


Ready to get started on a bathroom remodel? Contact 3Rs Construction & Remodeling for a quote today!

Advantages of Shower Remodels

Walk In Shower
Showers provide accessibility

Showers Take Up Less Space

You will normally need to displace nine square feet on average to install a standard shower stall or walk-in shower. In contrast, a typical bathtub occupies approximately 13 square feet.

A shower remodel might be preferable since they are more space-efficient if you have a smaller bathroom, something around 28 square feet to 34 square feet, for example. If you have a bigger bathroom that perhaps measures 40 square feet, a shower will take up less than a quarter of floor space, and a tub would occupy more like a third of the bathroom.

Showers Offer Greater Accessibility

It could be challenging for the elderly or people who have mobility impairments to climb in and out of a bathtub. All you need to do with a shower is open the door or curtain. For curb-less walk-in showers, you just step or glide in.

Showers are easier to get around in with the aid of grab bars on the walls and benches. Although you could buy an easy access walk-in tub with a built-in door and a bench, they are quite expensive, with a price, on average, of $5,500 installed.

Showers Use Less Water

If you keep your shower relatively short, you will save on water usage with a shower versus a bathtub. For example, a shower with a low-flow showerhead will, on average, will use 2.1 gallons of water per minute. According to the Home Water Works project, this totals 17 gallons for an average eight-minute shower.

If you are in the shower for less than 12 minutes, then your water consumption and overall water bill will generally be lower with a shower than a bath. A bath will consume a fixed amount ranging from 25 gallons to 40 gallons of water in a standard tub or
80 to 100 gallons in a whirlpool tub.

More Advantages of Shower Remodels

  • Quick and convenient.
  • Small footprint, even though a trend is toward large, luxurious shower stalls.
  • Multiple high-end features are available that include rain showers, jets, and steam options.
Which is best, bathtub or a shower?

Bathtub versus Shower – Which Offers the Best ROI?

Give some serious consideration to the types of buyers who may be interested in purchasing your home in the years ahead. If they are the elderly or empty nesters, a shower could be the best choice for a remodel. But if it is more likely to be a family, you will want at least one tub in the house.

Deciding What is Right for You

Take some time to figure out what type of features you would like in your remodeled bathroom. Also, think about your goals and what you want from this renovation. Do you prefer to save money with less water usage? Is space a factor? How big a bathroom do you have? Is accessibility something to consider?

It will be helpful to make a list of your needs and wants when it comes to your upcoming bathroom remodel. From there, it should become clear if a bathtub or shower remodel is the best choice for you.

Look to 3Rs Construction & Remodeling for Your Next Bathroom Remodel

If you intend to embark on a bathroom remodel in the next six months to a year, we invite you to contact 3Rs Construction & Remodeling. We will perform a beautiful, transformative bathroom renovation in your Polk and Marion County home.

The furniture and fixtures in your bathroom get a lot of use and deserve extra attention. Our team believes in helping you create a balance between looks and functionality.

3Rs Construction & Remodeling is your bathroom remodel contractor who can help you select the right features for your bathroom, including items like light fixtures, cabinetry, and sink styles.

Call us at (503) 363-1059, so we can get started on realizing your dream bathroom remodel today!

Spread the love

About 3Rs Construction & Remodeling

We are your trusted Salem, Oregon general contractor with over 3 decades of experience in home repairs, additions, kitchen & bathroom remodels.