Bathroom layouts that make the grade

By: Allison Millar, Contributing Writer
In: Necessary home improvements
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If you’ve ever shuffled sideways through a tiny bathroom to get from the toilet to the sink, you understand the importance of having space–and a good bathroom layout. When planning your bathroom remodeling, make sure you focus on size and layout–and get the job done right.

Gaining bathroom remodeling space

To enlarge your bathroom, look for an adjacent room or closet where you can steal 10 to 40 square feet. You can switch a hall closet so it opens into the bathroom. You want a bathroom that is at least 4-feet by 6-feet or 5-feet by 7-feet.

Added space can give you just enough clearance around all the bathroom fixtures to make movement more enjoyable. HGTV recommends focusing on these three common building code requirements for a bathroom:

  1. 21 inches in front of a lavatory, toilet and tub
  2. 24 inches in front of a shower
  3. 30 inches of floor space in front of all fixtures to opposite fixtures or wall

For floor plan examples and room dimensions, try these options from Kohler.

Bathroom layout: Efficiency is key

Next comes the layout. Consider:

  • Bath tub or shower. Showers take less space and help you reduce water usage. If you prefer a tub, look for a corner model. Here’s how Finehomebuilding.com added a corner tub and freed up space for a larger vanity.
  • Vanity. Is the sink too crowded with more than one person around? Consider upgrading the width to 36 or 42-inches.
  • Toilet. If the toilet is preventing you from expanding your vanity, look for a better location. You pay a little to move it, but you gain in efficiency.
  • Storage. Can you build in recessed storage in the walls or add a deeper vanity? Every inch counts. Here are good organizational ideas from Goodhousekeeping.com.

Now…no more shuffling. You’ll have a fancy new bathroom you can turn around in.

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