How Much Does a Wet Room Cost?
Often the first question we are asked is “how much does a wet room cost?”. Many factors can affect the answer but we have put together some figures for you based on creating a wet room with a floor area of 2m x 2m. We hope this will help you in budgeting for your wet room project.
Shower Tray Former
A properly functioning wet room needs to have a slope in the floor (slope to falls) which allows the water from the shower to drain away leaving the floor water free. The easiest and most reliable way of creating the correct slope to falls is to use a Shower Tray Former. Unlike a traditional shower tray, a shower tray former is built into the floor and is tiled over to create a seamless finish.
Be wary of cheap shower tray formers which, although they may be guaranteed, are not rigid. Any movement in the former can cause the tanking or the tiles to break. Such damage will not be covered by the guarantee and can lead to costly repairs.
There are many formers available on the market with prices ranging from £100 for a composite former (often supplied without waste or grating) to £630 for a made-to-measure former including a robust waste outlet and a solid stainless steel laser cut grating.
The quality of the grating (tile set) is a major factor in cost: cheaper products will either include a pressed steel tile set, or sometimes, won’t include any waste outlet at all.
Tanking (Waterproofing) Your Wet Room
Choose a tanking product which has been certified as suitable for use in wet rooms. Look for the CE mark on the product to confirm, it has been thoroughly tested and will form a reliable waterproof base on which to tile. Often wet room tanking is sold in the form of a kit containing all the products you need to fully waterproof the wet room: check the size of kit you are purchasing and not just the price, as cheaper kits can cover a very small area.
Remember the entire floor should be tanked as well as the walls in the immediate showering area. We have produced a calculation guide which shows how to calculate exactly how much tanking is required. Wet room tanking kits (10sq.m) are available from about £65 to £314.51.
Underfloor heating is a great choice for a wet room: it is warm underfoot and helps to keep the wet room dry. Electric underfloor heating mats are ideal for fitting in a wet room: they are easy to install and quicker to heat up than wet systems. The heating mats come in a variety of sizes and require a control unit. Be careful when choosing your system as some of the cheapest looking heating mats don’t include the thermostat.
We usually advise our customers that it is unnecessary to install underfloor heating in the immediate showering area as the heat from the water will heat the floor sufficiently and the slope to falls will prevent standing water.
Prices for a 3 sq.m. kit (including thermostat), start at about £100 rising to £300. Most of the difference in cost is in the sophistication of the thermostat you buy. Be sure to check the guarantee supplied with your product as most reputable electric heating mats will be supplied with a 10 year guarantee.
Wet Room Showers
There are a vast array of showers available and they range in price from £100 to, well the sky seems to be the limit but being realistic, say £900.
The choice of shower will depend on your needs and budget but to help you choose the best type of shower we have found this handy article Shower Types Explained
Shower screens aren’t strictly necessary in a wet room but can be useful if splashing is likely to be a problem. Choose a shower screen which has been designed for a wet room, these tend to be taller than those designed for a shower cabinet.
Prices for shower screens start at about £100 but, as with the showers can climb depending on the fittings and style to £600 +.
With tiles the style you choose can affect the labour cost involved with large tiles taking less time to lay and using less grout and spacers.
Most tiles are non-porous such as ceramic or porcelain. Porous tiles such as marble and travertine can be very attractive but will need to be sealed on a regular basis.
The cost of tiles range from approximately £12 per sq. m. up to £80+ per sq. m.
Tile Adhesive, Spacers and Grout
The cost of tile adhesive, spacers and grout should not be forgotten. A good wall and floor adhesive will cost around £14 per bag and cover approximately 4m2 and a 2.5 kg bag of flexible grout will cost around £8 and a bag of spacer comes in at approximately £10 per hundred.
Labour cost can vary throughout the country but a cost of between £150 and £200 per man day would not be unreasonable, with prices higher in the London area. The time taken will depend on the amount of ripping out required, the complexity of the design and the type of tiles used.
Average cost of Wet Room
Taking a 4 sq.m. room with walls of 2.3m high, we can now put together the average cost for a wet room using a robust shower tray former and tiling the entire floor and walls.
|Material / Labour||Cost (£) Including VAT|
|Shower Tray Former||480|
|Tanking Shower Kit||150|
|Underfloor Heating 2m2||150|
|Shower Screen (corner panel)||300|
|Tiles (£40 per m2)||816|
|Labour (2 person team for 5 days)||1800|
*Please note these figures do not include adding any further features such as basin or toilet.
The cost of a wet room is very dependent on the size of your room, the fittings you require, the quality of those fittings and the amount of labour needed to strip out and re-fit the room. It would be reasonable to expect a 4 sq.m. wet room to cost in the region of £5000 but please note, the figures we have supplied are to be treated only as a guide.
The most important thing to remember is to use the best quality products you can afford and have them fitted by a reputable installer. Some decisions such as tiles and grating type will affect the way your wet room looks, while other decisions, such as the quality and quantity of the tanking and the strength of the shower tray former, may not have an immediate visual impact but are probably more important when it comes to long term performance and peace of mind.