How to Determine the Most Appropriate Bathroom Layout

The most crucial aspect of bathroom design is considering the room as a whole, not just the bathroom itself. Is there a good flow from one room to another in your house? 

Remember that absolute uniformity is not required and that blending need not be boring. However, if the rest of the door knobs and hardware in your home are oil-rubbed bronze but you choose nickel for the bathroom in the hall, the contrast in finishes may be off-putting.

The colour scheme is similarly subdued, except for the powder room. You won’t achieve the seamless flow you aim for if you paint the walls of the master bedroom a sunny yellow and the bathroom a deep burgundy wine. 

The adjacent bathroom should have a design consistent with the overall flow of the space, even if you don’t plan to remodel the bedroom or paint it.


Photo by R ARCHITECTURE on Unsplash

Planning Your Bathroom: What You Need to Know


The master bedroom’s bathroom must coordinate with the rest regarding colour and texture. There is no need for the bathroom to flow if it is located in a hallway rather than a suite. It’s fantastic that it has the potential to stand on its own two feet, to have its distinct character and tone, and to be entertainingly original. The homeowner must make the decision.

Please make the most of your bathroom’s square footage by carefully planning its layout. Make a chart listing the various cabinet and plumbing fixture setups. 

It’s easy to overlook this detail, but choosing the bathtub must be proportional to the bathroom’s footprint. Decide whether you want a bathtub in your master bathroom or would rather have more space dedicated to the shower, which you can then equip with soothing body sprays.

It’s important to remember that the room’s layout should cater to your preferences whenever possible. The bathroom design must also create a safe space that can be modified as your needs change.


Functional Bathroom Arrangements


  • Zoning for Practicality

Bathrooms of any size can give the impression of spaciousness by concentrating the room’s functional elements in a single hub. While the work triangle is a tried-and-true kitchen layout, there is no one best way to arrange a bathroom.

The two most crucial considerations in space planning are how you plan to live and how you will use the area. The cost of your bathroom remodelling project will be much lower if the inside of your bathroom can stay in its current location, so bear that in mind as you plan your new design. As a result of having to accommodate preexisting plumbing, drainage, ventilation, and other infrastructure, your choices for arranging your space will be significantly more limited.

Here is a rundown of potential functional zones to incorporate into your design:


  • Vanity

Each vanity has a countertop, storage, and one or two sinks. Usually framed in today’s designs, a mirror can also be found in this space. 

Large mirror tiles and mirror walls are now considered an antiquated design choice. Some homeowners remove the double sink in their master bathrooms to free up counter space. 

On the other hand, dual sinks are convenient in family bathrooms, where members of the same family may share the space, but each prefers their sinks. This could even involve kids.


  • Single-Unit Shower/Bathroom Design

Although there are newer and more elaborate ways to create a bathroom, the tried-and-true method of combining a shower and tub into one space is still the most space- and money-efficient option. For a home to be “marketable,” at least one bathtub must be present, and this traditional fixture meets that need and the budget.


  • Tub

Significant, fancy jetted tubs were so yesterday. You can find them for sale, but who wants to buy one if they raise a substantial monthly water bill? 

In addition, those vessels the size of a pool or more oversized will need their dedicated water heater. Instead, deep, compact tubs made for two bathers are standard in master bathrooms with bathtubs.


  • Shower with a Feature

A master bathroom tub will have a greater depth and a smaller footprint than a standard guest bathroom tub. Homeowners are increasingly opting to enlarge their existing showers. 

Put that dated stand shower, which makes you feel like you’re walking into a tin can in the trash. New fixtures have been developed to meet the growing demand for “soaking” in the shower rather than the tub.


  • Spa Bathtub and Shower in the Room

A tiled, sculptural tub in the middle of that feature shower sounds like a great idea. The best features of both types of bathrooms will be integrated into your contemporary room. 

A shower head allows you to stand up and rinse without being confined to a bathtub. More and more people are adopting this design every day.


  • Toilet

It’s the most-used part of your bathroom, so it’s the one fixture you shouldn’t draw attention to visually. The bathroom’s toilet can be hidden in several ways: behind a door, beside a vanity along a wall where it will be partially hidden, or in a designated “water closet.” 

Detaching the toilet from the rest of the master bathroom is an intelligent design choice when space is premium. Half-walls, however, can create an airier feel in a more extensive full bathroom or master bathroom.


Setting Things in Their Proper Perspective


Consider the size and shape of your bathroom when creating a layout that incorporates all of the necessary fixtures. Regulations include minimum and maximum distances from walls to the toilet, sink, shower, and tub. 

Guidelines for appropriate space utilisation are provided by the National Kitchen & Bath Association. It would be best to question how your designer intends to implement the space guidelines.

In addition to aesthetics, bathroom safety is essential during the design process. This consideration necessitates the installation of nonslip flooring, good lighting, and accessories like attractive grab bars that can be used as a place to hang towels or as a handhold in the event of a fall. Offer more novel, long-term, aesthetically pleasing solutions that require no sacrifices.

Keep the following tips in mind as you design your bathroom layout to make sure you end up with a space that works for you:


  • The Restroom Is Centred Around The Bathroom’s Lone Toilet.

The placement of any bathrooms in the room will significantly impact the design of the space, whether you’re starting from scratch or just giving it a makeover. The renovation project cost will go up if you decide to relocate it, but you certainly can. 

The stack drain has a diameter of 4 inches, making it cumbersome to move. Keep the bathroom as close to the current one as possible.


  • Do A Headcount Of Everyone.

In general, how many people will frequent this area? This will help you determine how many toilets, sinks, and cabinets you need and whether you want a combination tub/shower. Prioritise the product’s practicality over its aesthetics.


  • Consider Storage

Inquire if it is needed for you to keep towels and linens in the bathroom if that is where you now keep them. How much shelf space is required for each person using the toilet facilities?


  • Give Yourself Some Room To Breathe

Even though there are rules and standards governing how a restroom should be constructed, some people will try to cram too many things into a space that is only so large. There must be at least thirty inches of space available for a toilet, and the bare minimum for a shower is thirty by thirty inches; however, some people prefer thirty-six by thirty-six inches, and it is ideal to have forty-two by forty-two inches to work with. 

The least possible space required for a toilet is thirty inches, and the minimum for a shower is thirty by thirty inches. It is recommended that there be a distance of at least 20 inches between the centre line of the sink and the wall for the sink to perform at its best. 

It is not expected that there will be any additional squeezing pressure. People who want two sinks in their bathroom may occasionally try to cram them into vanities only five feet long, even though this creates a very claustrophobic environment for them to do so. Being forced to observe something like this can sometimes be very frustrating. There should be no less than 36 inches between each sink, as this is the recommendation.


  • Overlap Space

When designing a small bathroom, it can be helpful to overlap the clearance so that you can still fit all the necessary plumbing equipment. This way, you may fit all the required plumbing fixtures into the allotted space.

A portion of the free floor space around the toilet can be used for the bathtub’s entryway. As a result, you should use the available area in your lavatory.


  • Make Some Space In The Room

Leaving some empty wall or floor space around it will make it look more significant and essential. All the privacy of the stall will be preserved. There are more ways to express yourself with a frosted glass panel or a partial wall. A half-inch to five-eighths-inch channel cut into the floor can be used to fasten frosted glass in place, and this solution requires very little additional room. It’s possible to avoid feeling stifled or crowded without sacrificing privacy or space.


Please Provide Ventilation


An open window or door to the outside should always be left open in the bathroom. A room’s vents serve multiple purposes, including eliminating stale air, unpleasant odours, and excess moisture. The integrity of a house can be jeopardised if a bathroom lacks proper ventilation.

You can’t just point the vents in the bathroom up and out the ceiling like a chimney; that wouldn’t be legal (and into the attic). On freezing days, when there was a lot of moisture in the air, the underside of the wooden deck would freeze. With the arrival of spring, the attic resembled a downpour as the moisture melted. That’s a surefire way to grow mould and mildew in your attic.

This “rain” seeps through the cracks in the ceiling and into the rooms below.

When exhausting the bathroom’s humid air, nothing but the most potent vent will do. More specifically, the Home Ventilation Institute (HVI) recommends installing an exhaust fan that provides one cubic foot per minute (CFM) for every square foot of floor space in bathrooms with a total area of less than 100 square feet (about eight air changes per hour.) The number and type of fixtures in a bathroom with a floor area greater than 100 square feet should be used to determine the ventilation rate.

The HVI estimates 50 CFMs of ventilation airflow is needed for each bathroom’s toilet, shower, and bathtub. The minimum airflow required for a jetted tub is 100 CFM.

As a result, 150 CFM of vent power is required for a 20′ x 12′ bathroom with a tub (no jets), enclosed shower, and water closet (toilet room). You can install three individual vents in each of these functional zones (the preferred method) or a fan with 150 CFM in the hub of the structure. You should wait 20 minutes after using the restroom before turning off any vents. Consider setting a timer.

A variety of methods exist for allowing fresh air into the room:


  • Fans that Mount to the Ceilings 

This housing consists of a recessed metal box situated within the room’s ceiling. There is a connection to the exterior via a vent duct.


  • In-Line Fans

Compared to ceiling mount fans, in-line fans are less intrusive and quieter, and multiple fans can be connected to a single motor located along the duct run. Another perk of in-line fans is that they are superior to ceiling-mounted models in air circulation (usually in an attic or crawlspace).


  • Fans that Mount on the Wall

If a bedroom or other habitable space is adjacent to the bathroom, this unit can be used to solve the issue. It fastens to an exterior wall and has its motor installed at the point where the vent leaves the building.


  • Vent Switches

Specialized switches include humidity sensors that start the fan when the air becomes moist and timer switches that turn the fan off after a set amount of time.


Efforts Made to Save Water


Most Americans waste 25 per cent of the 70 gallons of water they use daily indoors when they flush the toilet. Based on the collected information, we know that over half of the toilets in the US are still of the older, less efficient variety.

The typical American family of four uses about 16,000 gallons of water annually. Installing a high-efficiency toilet can reduce that number significantly. Furthermore, a high-efficiency toilet does not lose any of its flushing power.

It’s not the toilet that uses the most water of any plumbing fixture in the house. In the bathroom, both the shower and the sink faucet are major water wasters that can be replaced with newer, water-conserving fixtures.


Fixtures for the Bathroom That Are Efficient


  • Toilets

Find a high-efficiency toilet that uses no more than 2 gallons per flush. (On average, it takes five gallons of water to flush a toilet.) Each flush of a high-efficiency toilet uses only 1.28 gallons of water.


  • Faucets

Considering that a family of four uses about 14,000 gallons of water per year, switching to a more efficient faucet can have a significant financial impact.


  • Showerheads

More than seven gallons of water can be conserved during a single shower by using a high-efficiency shower head with an aerator. The purge and pause feature, which stops the water from draining once it reaches a certain temperature, means that you won’t have to worry about water waste while heating your shower.




Bathroom layouts can vary greatly depending on factors like available space, lifestyle needs, and personal preferences. Focusing on form and aesthetics at the expense of practicality and utility is a mistake.

Your bathroom can be both functional and attractive with careful preparation and design. If you need help deciding on the best layout for your needs, don’t be afraid to ask for it or look for resources online.

Home design software like TurboCAD Deluxe is something no architect or engineer should be without. Take advantage of robust and user-friendly 2D and 3D drafting tools that can be quickly mastered by CAD veterans and novices alike.

Get the best deal on Turbo CAD Deluxe from Softvire NZ. With our great deals on IMSI products, you’ll be able to make unique designs for your clients in no time.


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