Wetrooms essentially convert the entire concept of a bathroom into a wetroom. The whole area – or part of the area – is sealed – or tanked – to prevent any water from escaping.
Whilst wetrooms can still have a toilet, sink and even a bath for a larger wetroom, they can also be fitted as standalone rooms separated from other bathrooms.
In essence, a wetroom converts a bathroom into more of a spa-like space where tiling, flooring and the shower system combine to create an entirely new exciting space.
This article will cover what you can expect to pay for a wet room, factors that can affect the cost and other common questions around conservatories.
Average Wetroom Costs
By compiling quotes from 5 wetroom companies and 6 secondary sources, we’ve found the following average wetroom costs. Costs include all materials and labour costs but not underfloor heating or new toilets/basins.
It’s also worth noting that installing a wetroom in a newbuild may cost some 20% less than a retrospective fitting.
|Wet Room Size||Budget||Mid-Range||High-End|
|Small (2m x 1.5m)||£3,500||£4,500||£7,000+|
|Medium (2.5m x 2.5m)||£5,000||£6,000||£8,500+|
|Larg (4m x 4m)||£10,000||£12,000||£15,000+|
In terms of what to expect for each type of quality:
- A budget wetroom would use vinyl flooring and a standard shower
- A mid-range wetroom would use vinyl, rubber or cement flooring and mid-range shower
- A high-end wetroom with stone flooring, high-end tiling and high-end shower
Expect to pay between £200 – £600 extra for underfloor heating depending on the size of the wetroom.
The fundamental features of a wetroom include:
- The flooring
- The underfloor tray
- The wall and ceiling tiling
- The tap/faucet/shower system
- The sink or toilet where applicable
- Tanking materials
In terms of wetroom flooring, there are 4 main choices:
- Tiles or stone
- Micro cement
Tiles or stone flooring is the classy option. Natural stone tiles are quite grippy, which is important, but they’re also the most expensive and coldest underfoot. For a tiled wetroom floor, underfloor heating is pretty much essential – we’ll cover that in a moment.
- Stone flooring or tiling costs upwards of £50 per square metre, extending to £80 or more.
Vinyl is much cheaper, though potentially less long-lasting than tiles. Vinyl is also soft, grippy and there are lots of different styles on offer. It insulates heat better than stone or tiles.
- Vinyl flooring costs around £30 per square metre at a minimum.
Rubber is the third choice, boasting superior non-slip qualities. Rubber is an excellent choice for the elderly or those with mobility issues.
- Rubber flooring costs around £35 per square metre at minimum.
Finally, micro cement is durable, waterproof and offers an array of styles and pigmented colours. Like stone flooring, it’s generally cold and will likely need underfloor heating.
- Micro cement flooring could cost upwards of £60 per square metre.
Wetroom Walls and Ceiling
The walls and ceiling of a wetroom offer ample design choices. Natural stones including marble and limestone rate as higher-end options. Tiling is available in any colour or style ranging from classic metro tiles to mosaics and coloured ceramic tiles.
- Wall and ceiling tiles cost vary but are broadly equivalent to stone flooring, so you’re looking at around £30+ per square metre of wall and ceiling space. There are low-cost options available but high-end mosaic styles can cost significantly more.
The wetroom tray forms the base of the wetroom. It has to be built with a precise slope that allows water to drain away properly. The type of tray depends on the type of flooring already fitted in the bathroom, usually timber or concrete. You don’t have to use a tray – the floor gradient can be constructed without one.
Concrete floors will need to be replaced with a new layer of screed. For timber floors, a plywood deck is typically installed to angle the wetroom flooring towards the drain. Waterproof decks are fitted on top of the base before the tiling or floor is laid.
Trays are also guaranteed for a certain period of time – ask your wetroom installer about whether or not you need a wetroom tray and whether or not it is guaranteed.
- The wetroom tray and flooring costs vary with size but you’re looking at around £400 to £500 – this is one of the main costs of installing a wetroom.
Shower Systems Fittings
Many people choose to upgrade their shower system when they install a wetroom. There’s massive variation between shower systems with options ranging from basic kits to super-high-end multi-nozzle systems. Any glass dividers or other curtains are an extra cost to bear in mind.
- Shower fittings typically range from £50 to way in excess of £1000 for high-end options. Good-quality shower fittings make a wetroom all the more special, so expect to fork out for a decent shower system when you build a wetroom.
The main tanking materials are waterproof membranes, sealing tape, tanking slurry and waterproofing coatings for tiles.
Tanking materials often come with a life expectancy or warranty that guarantees their waterproofness for a set period of time. You can ask your wetroom specialist about their tanking warranty and whether they offer any guarantees.
- Tanking a small bathroom will likely cost between £100 and £250
Other costs mainly relate to electrical fittings and any new toilet or sink installations. Wetrooms need waterproof lightning and need to be properly wired for electrical safety.
- New toilets and basins can cost upwards of £1000 for both. Wetrooms generally need hovering toilets and basins that float above the wetroom’s floor. If you want to avoid these costs, you’ll probably need to segregate the wetroom from the rest of the bathroom.
Will I Need Underfloor Heating for My Wetroom?
It depends on where your wetroom is located in your house. Upstairs wetrooms will likely stay much warmer than downstairs wetrooms as the flooring is typically timber rather than concrete.
Wetrooms that are well-insulated from outside walls may retain their heat well enough to not need underfloor heating.
However, underfloor heating is usually wise as it helps wetrooms dry out in between use which prevents any buildup of moisture. Since the floor is typically removed when a wetroom is installed, underfloor heating is relatively cheap and efficient to install.
- A 2m x 2m underfloor heating system will likely cost around £200 to £300.
Types of Wetrooms
There are two broad approaches to building a wetroom:
1. Tanking the entire bathroom
To build a true wetroom, the entire bathroom has to be tanked. Tanking means to totally seal the space from water.
Fully tanked wet rooms will allow you to shower without entering a specific shower area – you just stand (or sit) under the showerhead and the water will safely drain away.
It’s common practice to install some glass dividing panels in a fully tanked wetroom, helping segregate the shower from the toilet and sink.
It really depends on how big your bathroom is. According to Victoria Plum, the average UK bathroom is typically around 2.5m x 2.5m. This is a great sized bathroom to fully tank and wouldn’t be overly expensive.
2. Tanking a section of the bathroom
Tanking a section of the bathroom might be optimal for much larger bathrooms that simply don’t need to be fully tanked.
One side of your bathroom might be a large wetroom, the other side can contain your standard wash area and toilet, and even a bath if your bathroom is big enough. Glass dividing panels can prevent too much water from escaping beyond the wetroom area.
Luxury options include double showers where two people can shower side-by-side, which you can find in some luxury hotels. Wetrooms can even be combined with saunas. High-end wetrooms can even feature 360-degree water jets that ‘fire’ from all angles!
Why Build a Wetroom?
Conventional bathrooms do the job, but wetrooms transform the space into something all the more special and luxurious.
Wetrooms aren’t all about looks and aesthetics, though, they’re also superbly practical in that they reduce cleaning and provide easy access for those with mobility issues.
Using a wetroom is a delight that can transform anyone’s day – they’re an excellent investment for both yourself and your home.
Can Anyone Have a Wetroom?
Pretty much! Wetrooms are probably best suited to bathrooms larger than 2m x 2m or 3m x 1.5m unless you’re removing the toilet and sink, or at least moving them to maximise space. But even very compact bathrooms can make slick, stylish and practical wetrooms.
Installing a wetroom in a very small bathroom will work in theory, but things can get pretty cramped and you need somewhere to store towels, wash products, etc.
You’d be surprised, though, as even smaller bathrooms can be effectively converted into a wetroom. Smaller bathrooms are also cheaper to convert into wetrooms, so long as the room is suitable to tank (waterproof).
How Long Does it Take to Install a Wetroom?
Size is the primary variable here but it’d be rare for anything but the very grandest wetrooms to take much longer than a week or two to complete.
Small wetrooms will likely only take around 3 or 4 days to install.
What About Planning Permission for Wetrooms?
Planning permission won’t be an issue for constructing a wetroom within an existing part of the house.
However, wetrooms must comply with building regulations and there are two key things to be aware of here.
Whilst the existing bathroom’s construction should be compliant with building regs already, wetrooms require sufficient ventilation to allow steam to escape safely and must also be electrically safe.
By using a contractor or installed enrolled in a Competent Person’s Scheme, your contractor can self-certify the work as compliant with these additional building regulations.
Get Prices on Wetrooms Near You
We’ve done our best to give you a good idea of what you can expect to pay for a wetroom.
However, our guides are not a substitute for a fixed quote specifically for you.
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