Study Spotlights Bathroom Design Trends

HACKETTSTOWN, NJ — Transitional and contemporary are expected to be the most popular master bathroom styles in the next few years, while a growing range of technology solutions are also seen taking center stage.

Those are among the key conclusions of the 2019 Bathroom Design Trends Study, an annual market analysis conducted by the National Kitchen & Bath Association. The study, whose results were released at this year’s Kitchen & Bath Industry Show, is aimed at identifying the most popular styles, features and materials among bathroom consumers, and to pinpoint what’s likely to be trending for the next three years. Results were based on a survey of 583 NKBA-member kitchen designers, remodelers, architects, decorative plumbing showrooms, cabinet shops and other product specifiers, according to the Hackettstown, NJ-based trade association.

Most of the surveyed design professionals worked on all types of bathrooms – from master baths (97%) to full/guest baths (89%) and half-bath/powder rooms (83%) – in the past year, the NKBA reported, adding that consumers are investing the most money in their master bathrooms, with a mean budget of $32,000, nearly twice that allotted for guest baths ($18,000) or powder rooms ($12,000). Most bathroom remodels stay within the former bathroom footprint, without increasing square footage, the NKBA found.

Surveyed design pros most often created transitional, traditional and contemporary master bathrooms in the past year, according to the NKBA. Less popular, although still a market factor, were coastal, Craftsman, rustic, mid-century and eclectic styling. Transitional and contemporary are expected to be the most popular bathroom styles in the next few years, the NKBA said. Traditional, industrial, coastal, mid-century and organic also show potential, the association added.

Among the technology solutions seen growing in popularity are temperature control/thermostat smart controls, water-conservation technology and internet-connected products (see graph above).

Other key study findings were as follows:

  • The “most interesting” new products for bathrooms include offerings in showers/shower surrounds (for example, solid-surface walls and touch controls), vanities/cabinetry (floating vanities, new finishes, different heights, reduced depth and open shelves) and technology solutions (controls for lighting, music and water temperature; leak detectors; mirrors with TV; app-enabled control for radiant floors, and digital shower valves).
  • Bath product categories needing “more innovation,” according to NKBA survey participants, include hardware and accessories (18% of those surveyed), sinks (15%) and vanities/cabinetry (14%). Among the most-sought-after hardware/accessories innovations are integrated grab bars, toilet paper holders and decorative towel bars, as well as more finish options for linear drains, grab bars and safety products. Sought-after innovations for sinks include new materials, different shapes and new installation capabilities. For vanities/cabinetry, surveyed design pros said they’d most like to see improved solutions for smaller areas and storage of jewelry, hair products and other essentials, as well as more wall-hung cabinetry. ▪

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