Shower vs. Tub: The Ultimate Remodel Debate

Your bathroom should be a sanctuary – a place to relax, refresh, and escape from daily life. But if your bathtub is chipped and outdated, or your shower feels cramped and dingy, that sense of tranquility goes right down the drain. 

Maybe the next time you find yourself searching “bathroom remodeling contractors near me” you’re hoping to finally transform that uninspiring bathroom. Is a bathtub-to-shower conversion the answer? Or does a luxurious new tub sound like the ultimate upgrade? 

Let’s dive into the pros, cons, and what’s best for your lifestyle and home value.

The Case for Showers

Showers are the practical choice for many homeowners:

  • Space Savers: They take up less room, perfect for maximizing a smaller bathroom. This freed-up floor space can make a big difference.
  • Accessibility: Walk-in showers, especially those with low or no thresholds, are safer for those with limited mobility and make aging in place easier.
  • Water Efficient: Shorter showers typically use less water than filling a bathtub, saving you money on utility bills.
  • Easy Cleaning: Less surface area to scrub means quicker cleanup, giving you more time for the fun parts of life!

The Case for Bathtubs

Sometimes, only a long soak will do. Here’s why tubs still hold appeal:

  • Relaxation Ritual: Nothing beats a hot bath with candles, bath salts, and a good book to de-stress at the end of a long day.
  • Resale Value: Many buyers, especially families with young children, consider a bathtub a must-have. Omitting one entirely can hurt your home’s value.
  • Therapeutic Benefits: Warm baths can ease muscle aches and some medical conditions. Certain bath products can soothe dry skin or boost relaxation.
  • Spa Vibes: Modern tubs with jets, aromatherapy features, and luxurious designs make your bathroom a true haven.

Factors Beyond the Basics

The tub-vs.-shower debate isn’t just about the fixture itself:

  • Lifestyle: Are rushed mornings the norm, or do you prioritize self-care time? Do you have kids or pets that need bathing? Your daily habits are key.
  • Budget: Walk-in shower conversions can be costly. Are you DIY-savvy enough to tackle some tasks yourself or will you need to hire out all the work?
  • Design Aesthetic: What’s your dream bathroom style? Some looks work better with a certain tub or shower configuration. Do you envision clean, minimalist lines, or a vintage-inspired clawfoot tub?
  • Future Plans: If you plan to sell within a few years, factor in your local real estate market’s preferences. A lack of a bathtub can limit your potential buyers.

Can You Have Both?


While it might seem like the ultimate “have your cake and eat it too” solution, adding both a shower and tub to your bathroom is a great option if you have the following:

  • Sufficient Space: Most standard bathrooms don’t easily accommodate both fixtures comfortably. If you’re squeezing everything in, it defeats the purpose of creating a relaxing, functional space.
  • The Budget: Adding both a shower and a tub will increase project costs. Not only do you have more materials, you’ll also be paying for additional labor and potentially plumbing modifications.
  • Design Harmony: Can your bathroom’s style handle a tub and shower without feeling cramped or visually cluttered? A skilled designer can help you create a cohesive look.

Finding the Right Fit

Feeling overwhelmed? A reputable bathroom remodeler can:

  • Assess Your Space: They’ll take measurements and work with your existing bathroom’s layout to suggest optimal solutions.
  • Creative Solutions: Maybe a smaller tub plus a shower is the perfect compromise! An experienced pro brings ideas to the table.
  • Discuss Materials: From acrylic to tile to natural stone, the options impact cost, appearance, and durability. They’ll explain the pros and cons of each.
  • Explain the Process: How long will the remodel take, and what level of disruption should you expect? Get clear answers before work begins.


The “right” answer about a shower or tub remodel depends entirely on your individual needs and priorities. Don’t rush into this decision! 

Consider how you use your bathroom now and envision how you want it to serve you in the future. Once you’ve narrowed things down, it’s time to find “bathroom remodeling contractors near me” who can turn your vision into reality. Ready to transform your bathroom into a space you love? Get a custom quote for your unique bathroom remodeling needs.