Homeowners undergoing bathroom remodels in the past year reported strong demand for general contractors, a tech-forward focus on product choices, and an uptick in median spending prices.
To identify the most popular bathroom choices for the year, Houzz surveyed more than 2,570 American homeowners who underwent a bathroom remodel in the past year or plan to remodel within the next three months.
Homeowners reported an outdated bathroom style as the top reason for remodeling, and the median cost of those projects hit $9,000. That’s a $1,000 uptick compared to survey data from Houzz’s 2021 US Bathroom Trends Study, marking a 13% increase.
Breaking those tickets down to major and minor projects (with major remodels categorized as a project where at least the shower was upgraded and minor referred to as projects without shower upgrades), major projects cost $15,000 and minor cost $5,000.
These median prices remain the same from 2021’s report, which found a 20% increase for major remodels of large bathrooms and 6% for major remodels of small bathrooms last year.
Since January 2020, building materials prices have increased 35.7%, according to data from the Producer Price Index. The most dramatic jump in prices has occurred within the past seven months.
A second quarter survey conducted by The National Kitchen and Bath Association found members reported an average 11% increase in year-over-year costs, and 40% reported passing those costs onto clients.
Demand for Professionals Remains
The share of homeowners seeking help from professionals remains high at 85%. Interestingly, the majority of homeowners look to general contractors for their bath remodels rather than specialized bathroom remodelers.
Nearly half (48%) of homeowners sought out general contractors, while 23% hired bathroom remodelers. Even fewer hired bathroom designers (13%), interior designers or decorators (12%), and architects (9%).
Compared to Houzz’s three last bathroom reports, the demand for hiring professionals has remained strong, increasing from 82% in 2020 to 85% this year.
2022 Bathroom Design Trends and Product Choices
The most popular major changes made during a bathroom remodel did not have to do with design—it was all about upgrading systems.
Homeowners Care About Ventilation
A whopping 62% of homeowners opted to upgrade systems during a remodel, such as ventilation fans, radiant heating, tankless water heaters, and water softeners, for example. This share is up 3% compared to last year.
The grand majority of new systems added were ventilation fans at 59%, followed by radiant heating at 14%. A big headache for homeowners in the 2021 report (25%) was poor ventilation in their original bathrooms.
Changing Design Choices
Overall, most homeowners went with a transitional style for their new bathrooms, beating out modern and contemporary styles, which peaked within the last two years.
With that came a 7% increase in homeowners selecting shaker-style vanity doors and a 4% drop in homeowners selecting flat-panel doors on their upgraded vanities.
The latest report continues the upward trajectory of freestanding flat-bottom bathtubs, which began in 2019. This year, 58% of homeowners adding a new tub selected a freestanding flat-bottom one. The share in 2019 was just 50%.
Trailing right behind are alcove bathtubs at 25%. Most commonly, homeowners go with acrylic bathtubs rather than fiberglass and soaking tubs rather than standard tubs.
Technology features pop up in every home product category nowadays, from stoves to faucets, lighting to mirrors. And that tech interest continues to grow in the bathroom.
Up 4% from last year, toilet seats with bidets were selected by 24% of homeowners who upgraded their toilets. Bidets are the most common upgrade, followed by self-cleaning toilets, heated toilets, and built-in night lights.
But faucets were the most common product to embrace tech in the bathroom, according to survey results. Of homeowners adding new faucets, half selected ones with high-tech features, such as water efficiency, fingerprint resistance, and touch/touch-free activation.
Showers and bathtub tech upgrades remained marginal, at just 8% each.