Freestanding baths are very fashionable at the moment, and you only have to flick through the pages of the glossy home interior magazines to see how much they are loved by the interior designers and boutique hotels. Having a freestanding bath is something which buyers look for when they are browsing through property sites trying to decide on their next home, and although they take up more space than a standard bath, the market for freestanding baths is booming. If you're thinking of buying and installing a bath in your own bathroom, how much can you expect to pay and how much should you expect it to cost?
Buying the Freestanding Bath
Most people think of the traditional, Victorian roll top bath when it comes to a freestanding bath, but there are many other designs and options on the market. As with everything you buy for your home, the cost is going to vary hugely depending on where you buy it from and what sort of design you choose. For a brand new, freestanding bath from a leading retailer you can expect to pay anything from £350 up to several thousands of pounds. The golden rule when shopping for a bath of this nature is to shop around, look at both traditional bathroom retailers and leading online stores and compare prices fully before deciding which to buy. Another option is a vintage bath from an architectural salvage yard, but these are so popular that they are often more expensive than buying new. When looking at freestanding baths, make sure that the price you see online or in the shops includes feet for the bath, where appropriate and taps as if it doesn't, this could increase the price too.
In addition to the bath itself, the major cost associated with this sort of work is any additional pipework which needs to be done. When speaking to a plumber you have to think about not only the cost of the plumbing work, but also the cost of plastering, flooring and decorating which is often forgotten. This can add to the cost considerably, especially if you have to factor in brand new flooring for the whole bathroom, or replastering a whole wall because pipes or an old bath has been removed from the wall. When you are speaking to plumbers and builders about any work which you are having done then it is essential that you are clear about what work you expect to be carried out, and that they are clear about what exactly their quote covers. You can expect to pay around £400 for the plumbing work to have your new bath installed and the old pipework made safe, but as every job differs get quotes in writing before agreeing to go ahead with any work.
Reducing the Cost
Even if you're not up for doing the plumbing work of routing new pipes to your bath in the centre of the room by yourself, there is lots that you can do to get a better price for your new freestanding bath. First, do as much of the preparation work as you can. Hire a skip, or a large van which will allow you to take the old bath and any other rubbish away without expecting the plumber or builder to take care of it. Think about whether you would be prepared to take on any of the finishing work like tiling, flooring or painting rather than paying the professionals to do it. When it comes to buying the bath, check out websites like Gumtree or Freegle; you might be able to pick up an old freestanding bath free of charge and have it resurfaced rather than buying a whole new one. Think creatively and make your money stretch further.
Is this a Fad?
There's no denying that freestanding baths are fashionable at the moment. How long this trend will last is like asking the length of a piece of string. It's probably fair to say that the traditional roll top style freestanding baths have a more classic appearance and these will date less slowly than an ultra-modern bath, although look after it and it will last a lifetime. Still undecided? Why not skip over to our Bath buyers guide to help you make your mind up.