Interiors: Bathroom design for house sharers

If you’re a 20-something who shares a flat with your partner or perhaps lives as part of a house share, your vision for a dream-worthy bathroom may look a little different from that of the average family bathroom. Whether you’re decorating your own bathroom or fitting out a rental property you’d like to appeal to younger renters, if you’re in the midst of a bathroom redesign, this post is for you.

Functional design tips for comfortable cohabiting
According to research by E.ON, on average 18-24 year-olds spend 13 minutes on each shower and 22 minutes in the bath compared to the seven minutes spent showering and 17 minutes bathing by those aged 65 and over. So, while you it may seem natural to assume the younger generation would be all for bathroom efficiency in order to maximise their potential hours of sleep, the reality may be that under 25s prefer to take a little extra ‘me time’ when it comes to their bathroom schedule.

Factoring this into the design of shared bathrooms can be a little tricky as the functionality of a shared space can be compromised when you start to concentrate too much on comfort and personalisation but there are additions you can make that should make a bathroom rota run smoothly. If space permits, fitting a bath and a shower means there’s the option of a more time efficient shower in the morning and the potential to take a more leisurely bath when time allows. Though that of course does still depend on adherence to any bathroom rota cohabitees decide to put in place.

The fact that bathroom issues consistently rank highly on the argument agenda highlights how much we all value time spent in the space. Recent research conducted by Weroom (via the Independent) found that using up the hot water or spending too much time in the bathroom ranked in the top ten most annoying housemate habits. From a design point of view this means you may want to choose a fast acting water heater to keep showers going for longer. If you’re one of the quarter of people who like to listen to music in the shower, a shower radio could be an inexpensive addition to your shower space but only if you’re sure you won’t disturb the rest of the house if you choose to sing along! And, with young people reportedly using time on the toilet to catch up on social media, you may want to ensure your property’s Wi-Fi emitter isn’t positioned too far from your latrine.

Keeping clear of clutter can help with cleaning and help prevent accidents, it also has the potential to put off housemates and partners who are tempted to help themselves to your salon purchased shampoo or that expensive shower gel your aunt bought you for your birthday. Fitting a sleek and simple bathroom cabinet and assigning roomies a shelf each as you would with the kitchen fridge should at least help stem problems with product chaos though it won’t always keep other’s paws off your products. It doesn’t need to take up too much space either if you choose a shape to complement your room layout, Bella Bathrooms have some more unusual bathroom wall cabinets to choose from including corner styles.

Fixtures, fittings and finishing touches
With bills also topping the list of hot topics to argue over in shared housing, a little energy efficiency in the bathroom can go a long way. Fitting LED ceiling lights can help you achieve a sleeker finish along with lowering energy consumption. In a similar vein, fitting adequate ventilation can help keep heat in the home by negating the need to fling windows open whenever hot water is running. Plus, it will stop unattractive condensation and mould ruining your decorating efforts.

Settling on a design theme for your bathroom is usually a personal affair that is until you have to take into account the preferences of many. From a practical perspective, more modern shower and bathroom styles have fewer nooks, crannies and rolls that require cleaning. In other words, a less fussy finish generally means faster cleaning, which should have wide appeal. This needn’t mean the bathroom needs to look sparse or unwelcoming. Simple prints or framed photographs can add colour and be regularly updated to stay on trend. And, while you may not want to fit out your space with the latest trends like ceramic or metallic sinks, you can mix in a more accessible version of trends with luxe look accessories like this copper accessories collection from Matalan.

Are you endlessly arguing with your roommates about who used all the hot water or last cleaned the shower out? What are your bathroom niggles and how would you design them out of existence?


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