En-suite bathrooms can be an attribute for any home. Being able to have your own bathroom space is a great feeling and the convenience of hopping out of bed into the shower is unbeatable! It also saves those freezing, arduous trips across the landing to the loo in the middle of the night. In addition to these practical and psychological benefits, having a private and personal bathroom attached to the master bedroom can increase the resale value of your property.
If you’re considering having an en suite bathroom in your home here is a quick guide of the things you will need to know.
Do you have the right space?
When people think of en-suite bathrooms they generally picture a space smaller than the main bathroom of a house. However, if you’ve got the space to spare – use it!
Don’t worry if you don’t have a giant bedroom you can sacrifice a corner of, even a smaller space can be well worth the investment. If your master bedroom isn’t that big you’ll need to measure up to ensure you have enough space to install an en-suite.
You don’t just have to sacrifice bedroom space for your en suite though, you could use space from the master bedroom and space from another, adjacent room. You’ll also need to make sure you chosen space is suitable for plumbing, waste pipes and window or extractor fan to be fitted in the correct places.
Options for smaller spaces
If your available space is smaller it doesn’t mean your design options are more limited. It doesn’t take much room to create a beautiful shower room and with careful planning you can really fit a lot into your en suite.
Make sure you make full use of awkward corners and recesses. Consider space saving solutions, such as corner units for basins and toilets. Using wall mounted bathroom fittings can create a much more usable vertical space, without taking up valuable floorspace. Fittings such as sinks with a half pedestal work well to hide plumbing and pipework.
There are lots of space saving options for just this situation, for example short projection toilets are an excellent space-saving solution for ensuites. This style of toilet has a shorter projection so they’re less likely to encroach on precious space in the room. Cloakroom basins are another great choice for smaller ensuites. Ultra slim and compact in design, a cloakroom basin is ideal for even the tightest of spaces as the size of the sink don’t project out into the room.
Whilst adding value to your home (and a bit of luxury and convenience to your life), an ensuite is only worth its weight in gold once you’ve received the necessary building regulation approval. This is to ensure that all electrics, plumbing, drainage, ventilation and glass meet regulation and UK safety standards.
If you’re refitting your ensuite bathroom, it’s unlikely you’ll need building regulations approval, as long as you’re simply replacing existing fittings with new ones. However, any drainage or electrical works as part of the refit may require building regulations approval.
If you’re fitting a new ensuite as part of an extension or as part of a master or a guest bedroom, then it’s likely you’ll need to acquire building regulations approval to ensure that ventilation, drainage, electrical work and structural stability all meet standard requirements. Different rules apply in Scotland and Northern Ireland, but your installer will be able to advise you on this.
Building regulations approval is for your own protection and safety. You’ll also need this in place if and when you come to sell the house in the future, as you may need to have proof that the ensuite has met with building regulations at the point of sale. Not having building regulations approval can delay the selling process or even put off potential buyers.
If your building work is carried out by a tradesperson who is registered with a scheme, they can self-certify that their work complies with building regulations. They will then issue you with a certificate within eight weeks of completion of the project.
Otherwise, you’ll need to apply through your local council. The type of application you need to make depends on the scale of your project. Completion certificates are usually received within eight weeks of completion of the project, provided it is compliant.
It’s worth keeping in mind that the cost of building regulations approval varies depending on the scale of the project and on the type of building (e.g. listed buildings).