20 Marine Drive, Narragansett, RI 02882

If you dream of a personal haven where you can have a few minutes to yourself each day devoid of texts, tweets, and constant interruptions, consider converting your primary bath into an in-home spa. A good starting point is to know what’s hot and what’s not in bathroom renovations. Houzz.com provides a good roadmap through its 2021 U.S. Houzz Bathroom Trends Study.


The number one reason homeowners cite for renovating a bathroom is that the existing space is old and dated. This mirrors the Houzz study that found two-thirds of survey respondents claimed that they can no longer stand their existing bathrooms. Insufficient storage was cited by 33% of homeowners as the primary reason for their renovation. Other top motivators for renovating a bath include:

  • Small showers
  • Insufficient lighting
  • Poor ventilation
  • Limited countertop space
  • Glass shower doors
  • Noisy fan
  • Shower curtains
  • Only one sink
  • No natural light
  • Toilet location
  • No bathtub

The ability to age in place with dignity and ease is another top reason homeowners in Southern New England are renovating their bathrooms. More than 25% of survey respondents claimed they needed to remodel to address the needs of an aging family member and nearly 40% reported that they will need to accommodate an aging family member in the future.

White continues to be the most preferred finish color for newly renovated baths. It’s the top color for vanities (32%), countertops (58%), and shower walls (46%). There are many reasons why the preferred color of new dream baths is white. White connotes cleanliness, it reflects light to make smaller spaces appear larger, and it provides a soothing spa-like vibe that many homeowners crave. While white remains a staple, we often see homeowners incorporating more colorful choices in their bathrooms in shower niche tile, and floor tile.

Other popular finishes in new baths include wood vanities (27%), gray paint on non-shower walls and blue vanities, specified in 8% of new bath renovations. As Rhode Island remodelers, we can confirm that white, gray, and navy are among the most requested cabinetry colors by our clients. We are also seeing a rise in popularity of green and natural wood tone cabinetry.

As we see with some of our clients, Houzz also found that most renovations are confined to the existing footprint of the bath. Expanding a bath’s space into other areas of the home may not be practical or cost-effective. Within the existing footprint, nearly 50% of renovators increased the size of the shower. More than 40% changed the layout of their bath and 40% modified existing walls.

In roughly half of RIKB Design Build primary bathroom remodels, homeowners decide to eliminate the tub as part of their bath renovation to accommodate a larger, high-performing shower. Some shower upgrades can include steam, video, audio, and a variety of therapies such as aroma and color. In the other half of our primary bathroom remodels, homeowners opt for a freestanding tub model.

However, alcove tubs that are installed against walls and typically feature a tub/shower combination are gaining in popularity for family bathrooms. Houzz found that they were specified in 26% of 2021 renovations compared to 22% of 2020 renovations.

What trends will work best in your new dream bath? Give us a call at 401.463.1550 or make an appointment to visit us at 139 Jefferson Blvd, Warwick, RI 02888 and let us show you how we can create an in-home haven for you and your family!