Small Ensuite Size Guidelines | Info & Advice

Are you tired of fighting off the stampede of teens in the morning for a shower? All you need is a small shower located just off your master bedroom and life would be so much better. Can you fit a small ensuite? Is there enough room under the eaves or if you take over the hall linen cupboard?

In this post, I’ll go over some small ensuite size guidelines and design considerations as well as answer some common questions about the topic.

Let’s dive in!

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What’s The Average Size Of An En-Suite Bathroom Or Shower Room?

Most homes in the UK boast bathrooms no bigger than 2.5 metres square, with many whittling down the size to 1.7m X 2.0m. This size allows for an ample 1.7m wide shower with a comfortable space left to fit in a toilet and vanity. If all you need is a simple standing shower, then you can shrink the size down to 700mm wide by 2000mm long.

The ensuites that you see on home improvement shows are typically much larger than ones seen in your average suburban home. Your ensuite will be nicely finished if it has a standard shower, toilet, and small basin. However, a water closet or shower room will still add function to the house.

If you are dreaming of a double vanity, jetted soaking tub, and walk-in shower built for two, you will want to look at a space that is 3 metres square or larger. You may even want to take over one of the bedrooms and use any extra space for a walk-in closet.

Small Ensuite

What Is The Smallest Size An Ensuite Can be?

No government rule or regulation determines a minimum size for any bathroom. That means you can create an ensuite in a very small space. For many homeowners, the perk of having a private shower and WC rather than sharing with the kids makes a small ensuite preferable over none.

You simply need to leave enough room to get in the door, sit on the toilet, and do your morning dance under the shower. If you are adding just a toilet and basin, the room can be as small as 700mm wide by 1500mm deep.

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Considerations When Designing A Small Ensuite Bathroom

Now that you have decided to install an ensuite under the eaves or in an unused closet, you need to think about a few crucial details.

Accessing the Ensuite

Did you ever notice that most bathroom doors open into the bathroom? That is to provide a touch of privacy to the occupant. However, in a small ensuite, there is little room leftover to turn around let alone for setting some aside for a large door.

You may want to have the door open out into the bedroom or opt for a pocket or sliding door. A sliding door also eliminates the need for a threshold, which makes it easier for a person with mobility challenges to enter.

Shop for Slimline Fittings

In a narrow bathroom, you must account for every spare centimetre. A standard basin is typically 450mm deep. In a room that could be just 700mm wide, that leaves little space to slide by to reach the loo. A slimline basin can be just 300 to 350mm deep with the taps set to the side.

A toilet with an inset cistern can reclaim 100mm of knee space by hiding the tank behind the wall. The slimline fixtures also give the tiny WC a more contemporary vibe. So, make sure to take your time and source sanitaryware that not only suits your style but also works in the space.

Optimise the Layout

A small ensuite that features a smart design can make the room feel and function like a much bigger bathroom. Write out a measured floorplan of the room and jot down all the fittings to make sure they really work before beginning demolition.

You will need at least 500mm between the front rim of the toilet and the wall. If you are tall, give yourself some extra space. If you plan on a shower door, make sure that it can open all the way into the room. Where will you hang your towel and robe? Don’t forget about an overhead light and its switch. Are you working with masonry walls or modern wallboard?

The most common layout features the shower enclosure at the far end. The basin sits between the shower and the toilet along one wall. This design is found in many homes because it works well. Most of the time you will have space for a vanity cabinet supporting the basin and shelving over the toilet. 

Small ensuite layout

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Does A Small Ensuite Add Value To A Property?

In nearly every instance, yes. Multiple studies have shown that adding an extra four-piece bathroom to any home will add a little over 5% to its total value. While a small ensuite may not give your home the same boost, it definitely adds function. Any potential homebuyer will put even a shower room or water closet in the bonus column when comparing properties. 

However, it only adds value if you finish the new bathroom with comparable fixtures and trims to the other bathrooms in the home. If your main bath features marble flooring and hands-free fixtures, the same luxury appointments should be added to the ensuite.

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How Much Does It Cost To Add A Small Ensuite?

You should expect to spend between £4,000 and £8,000 on this project. While you won’t be spending as much as a full-size bathroom, you still face the expenses of demolition, architectural plans, council permits, and contractors. There will be minimum requirements for plumbing, electrical, and ventilation that must be met.

If that total represents significantly more than 5% of your home’s market value, you may want to reconsider your decision to build.

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Final Thoughts…

There you have it. Everything you need to know about small ensuite bathrooms and what to think about if you’re considering having one installed in your home.

While you may think your space is too small to fit an ensuite, even just a small amount of room could fit a toilet and sink, or even a small shower room. Giving you that extra bathroom space during the morning rush. And, it could also add value to your home or help make your property more appealing when it comes time to sell it.

So, what are you waiting for? Get designing that small ensuite bathroom!


Michael R

Michael is a KBB designer from the UK. He's been designing and project managing new Kitchen, Bedroom and Bathroom installations for over eight years now, and before that, he was an electrician and part of a KBB fitting team. He created The Bathroom Blueprint in early 2020.