2022 Cost Of A Walk In Shower

Typical Cost To Remodel a Bathroom Average: $4,508 - $25,749
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Offering more space and greater accessibility, a walk-in shower can be a perfect way to modernize your bathroom and improve the usability.

Installing a walk-in shower can be an ideal solution for an elderly family member or someone who has mobility and balance challenges.

To get started on your shower remodel, contact your local bathroom pros for FREE ESTIMATES!

How Much Does A Walk In Shower Cost?

Average Costs For:
Most Homeowners Spent Between: Most People Spent: $5,350 - $13,670
Low End
$3,908
Average
$11,362
High End
$25,749

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code



On average homeowners report spending $3,750 – 16,250 for a walk-in shower, including all materials and professional installation. Most people spend $7,500 – 11,000 for a walk-in shower.

The price range for a walk-in shower varies greatly depending on the shower’s size, quality of finishing materials, special features, and the local labor costs.

Not including the plumbing work, which is detailed separately, labor and installation costs for a walk-in shower range from $620 to approximately $1,600.

You may need to hire both a plumber and electrician to ensure the work meets all required building codes.

Labor and installation costs typically include framing for your plumbing, tiling, sealing, and ensuring the area is waterproof.

You can use our Bathroom Cost Calculator to estimate the cost of a bathroom remodel.

Walk-In Shower Cost Breakdown

The cost of installing a walk-in shower varies depending on several design factors. You also need to factor in the costs of plumbing and any demolition work required before the installation commences.

The table below provides a detailed break down of the costs involved in building a walk-in shower in your bathroom.

Item Price
Demolition Work $475 to $950
Initial Plumbing $800 to $2,000
Stone Tile Surround $10 to $30 Per Square Foot
Marble Tile Surround $25 to $52 Per Square Foot
Cement Surround $1.80 to $9.50 Per Square Foot
Ceramic Tiles $1 to $45 Per Square Foot
Porcelain Tiles $2.70 to $9.50 Per Square Foot
Travertine Tiles $4.75 to $27 Per Square Foot
Glass Tiles $19 to $27 Per Square Foot
Waterproofing Membrane $900 to $1,000
Shower Pan $950 to $2,400
Final Plumbing Work $800 to $1,150
Exhaust Fan $200 to $900
Shower Bench $270 to $750
Hand Bars $45 to $270
Shower Valve $200 to $520
LED Lights $100 to $270
Glass Doors or Panels $1,400 to $2,900
Additional Labor Costs $320 to $1,100

Also, check out our guide to the Cost of a Shower Remodel, for more detailed costs of this project.

Demolition Cost

Before you can install a walk-in shower, you need to prepare the area that the shower will fit into. This demolition work typically consists of removing an old bathtub or shower unit, in addition to removing floor and wall tiles.

Even if you intend to keep your current wall tiles, you’ll usually need to remove them at this stage to access the plumbing that fed into your old bathtub.

Expect to spend between $475 and $950 on this stage, though you can reduce the costs by handling much of the demolition work yourself.

Pro Tip: If you plan to demolish your bathroom yourself, make sure you shut off all power and water to the room before you begin work.

Flip the appropriate switch on your breaker box to ensure no electricity runs to the bathroom. As for water, you’ll need to identify the manifold line that serves your bathroom so you can use a manifold key to turn the valve that controls that line off.

Once you’ve turned the water off, turn on the faucets and flush the toilet until all traces of water disappear.

Plumbing Work Cost

It’s very unlikely that you’ll be able to use the bathroom’s existing plumbing when installing a walk=-in shower.

In most cases, you’ll need a plumber to install new shower valves to control how the water flows. You’ll also need a professional to help you position your new showers drain, install its training system, and handle everything to do with the water supply lines.

The cost of plumbing work can vary widely depending on just how much work the contractor needs to do.

For basic work, expect to spend around $800. However, this figure can easily rise past $2,000 if your bathroom requires more extensive work.

Cost of Shower Building Materials

Average Costs For:
Most Homeowners Spent Between: Most People Spent: $5,350 - $13,670
Low End
$3,908
Average
$11,362
High End
$25,749

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code



The type of material you use for the shower surround has a huge impact on the cost of your project. You typically have a choice between tiling the surround or using stone or concrete to create a more unique aesthetic.

Creating a Stone Surround

If you go down the stone route, expect to spend between $10 and $52 per square foot of tiling.

The exact cost varies depending on the type of stone tile you use. Basic natural stone tiles come in at the lower end of the spectrum. However, cultured marble tends to cost more due to its attractive look and the quality of the materials.

These types of tiles are typically made by crushing stone to create particles that the manufacturer bends with resin. This creates the look of marble slabs, with the resin offering the stone some waterproofing qualities.

You can also use cement to create your shower surround. This typically costs less than using stone tiles, with prices ranging from $1.80 to $9.50 per square foot. However, cement surrounds are somewhat stark and rarely feature attractive patterns.

Creating a Standard Tile Surround

If you don’t want the stony aesthetic, you have several options available for more standard tile surrounds.

By far the most popular, and in most cases the most cost-effective, type of tile is ceramic. Widely available, ceramic tiles can vary in price from lows of as little as $1 per square foot to as much as $45 per square foot. It all depends on the type and design of the tile.

Going the porcelain tile route likely means you’re looking for a more traditional aesthetic. These types of tiles usually come without patterns.

Prices vary from about $2.70 per square foot to about $9.50.

Travertine tiles are also an option. Made using limestone, these tiles are available in several finishes, including brushed, polished, and tumbled.

If the tiles are unpolished, they have a natural no-slip texture that provides plenty of traction in wet shower rooms. Expect to spend between $4.75 and $27 per square foot on these types of tiles.

Finally, you can opt for glass tiles. Smooth and sleek, these tiles can create a unique shower aesthetic. However, you’ll find that even standard glass tiles are a little costlier than most others, with prices ranging from $19 to $27 per square foot.

Waterproofing

Without a waterproofing membrane, the water from your shower will constantly wear down the tile or stone used for the surround.

If you’re working with a contractor, they should handle the waterproofing as part of the tiling work. However, doing it yourself means you need to purchase a waterproofing membrane that you can install over the tile.

The materials alone can cost up to $950. If you’re paying for installation as well, expect to spend closer to $1,900, including the material costs.

The Shower Pan

As there’s no tub or unit to direct water towards a drain, you need to have a shower pan installed when building a walk-in shower.

This pan is essentially the shower’s floor and it needs to slope gently towards a drain to prevent water from running into the rest of the bathroom.

You can find pre-built shower pans for about $950. However, these may not match the look and feel of the rest of the shower surround.

Going the customized route, with appropriate tiling over the top of the pan, can cost between $2,000 and $2,400.

Did you know? Standing water and minor floods are not your only concerns if your walk-in shower doesn’t have a pan installed.

Poor draining also leads to the development of mildew and black mold. The spores released by mold are allergens and irritants that can lead to breathing issues and allergic reactions.

Cost of Installing Shower Fixtures and Final Plumbing

Once the surround is in place, you’ll turn your focus towards the fixtures and final plumbing work.

Again, your costs here will vary depending on the accessories you want to install into the shower.
Let’s start with the final plumbing work.

Regardless of the accessories you install, the final plumbing required to make the shower ready for use costs between $800 and $1,150.

Moving on to accessories, the following is a breakdown of the approximate prices you can expect to spend for each accessory you can add to a walk-in shower:

Exhaust Fan – $200 to $900
A Shower Bench – $270 to $750
Hand Bars – $45 to $270
A Shower Valve – $200 to $520
LED Lights – $100 to $270

You may not require all of these accessories, meaning you can cut down the costs of your walk-in shower by several hundred dollars.

However, if you’re building the shower for somebody who requires a greater level of accessibility, a bench and hand bars are essential to ensure the person can use the shower safely.

Shower Doors and Glass Panels Prices

An optional extra with a walk-in shower, panels and doors separate the shower area from the rest of the bathroom.

They can prevent moisture from seeping into the rest of the room. Plus, they add an attractive aesthetic. However, you can install a walk-in shower without them and simply use a curtain to create some separation.

The materials and labor required to install panels or doors vary. Expect to spend approximately $1,400 for simple glass panels. If you want sliding glass doors, the cost increases to approximately $2800-to-$2900.

Cost Of Installing a Specialized Handicap Walk-In Shower

When installing a walk-in shower specifically for an elderly person or somebody with a disability, you have some additional concerns to consider.

Most importantly, the shower must meet all codes in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations.

Did you know? The ADA became law in 1990. The act prohibits discrimination based on disability in all forms of public life.

When it comes to walk-in showers, the act is particularly important if you’re operating commercial premises, such as a nursing home.

Failure to comply with ADA regulations in such cases can lead to fines and criminal convictions.

The shower must have no barriers, allowing wheelchair users to easily access the shower. Plus, the shower’s floor must be level with the rest of the bathroom as any sort of curb or step acts as a barrier to entry.

You’ll also need to install handrails and a shower bench to enable full use of the shower.

The total cost of installing a walk-in shower for the elderly or people with disabilities ranges from $2800 to $5700, depending on the specific accessibility features needed.

What’s the Return on Investment For a Walk-In Shower?

The bathroom is one of the most important rooms in your home, especially if you’re selling or renting the property.

Propertymark’s figures for 2019 show that approximately 29% of the homes that sold during the year had new bathrooms installed.

Plumbing company Victoria Plum also conducted a survey that showed that 87% of people state that a good bathroom is a key factor when choosing to rent or buy a property.

So, when it comes to the return on your investment, a walk-in shower can make your property more appealing, leading to more potential buyers. This is especially the case if you’re target market is the elderly or people with disabilities.

Digging deeper into the figures, Zillow created an interesting article that highlights the return you can expect when you install a walk-in shower.

It found that measures to make a bathroom universally accessible, which walk-in showers fall into, achieve an average 70.6% return. This means that you can expect the bathroom to add 70.6% of the money you spent on it to the value of your home.

Pro tip. If you don’t want to complete a full bathroom remodel, Zillow’s figures suggest you can get an excellent return on investment from minor cosmetic changes.

Simple actions, such as installing a new mirror, upgrading old fixtures, and refinishing cabinets, increase your property’s value by $1.71 for every dollar you spend.

You may find you get a better return on installing a walk-in shower if you also handle these minor cosmetic improvements.

While this may seem like a negative return on investment, consider the fact that a walk-in shower makes your home more appealing. This means you’ll attract more buyers, potentially creating a bidding war for the property.

Average Costs For:
Most Homeowners Spent Between: Most People Spent: $5,350 - $13,670
Low End
$3,908
Average
$11,362
High End
$25,749

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code


What Are the Benefits of Installing a Walk-In Shower?

Accessibility is the main benefit, as mentioned previously. Those who experience restricted movement due to age or disability generally find it much easier to use these types of showers than to use a bathtub or shower unit.

However, there are several more benefits besides accessibility. Walk-in showers are also easier to clean than standard bathroom fixtures.

Featuring flat surfaces with fewer corners, there aren’t as many places for grime to build up in these types of showers. Furthermore, tile and glass are fairly easy to keep clean as long as you revisit them regularly.

Walk-in showers are also versatile thanks to the wide range of tiling options available. No matter what your bathroom looks like, you should be able to create a walk-in shower that matches its aesthetic.

As long as you have a 36 square foot space, which is the minimum the ADA recommends for a walk-in shower, you should be able to install something that suits your needs.

Did you know? According to a survey by property company Trulia, 48% of Americans aged 35 to 54 want to upgrade to a larger home. These findings demonstrate the importance of more space to the average property buyer.

Finally, the lack of physical barriers can mean that walk-in showers create the illusion of more space in your bathroom. This space can be an important selling point for potential buyers and tenants.

Are There Any Drawbacks to a Walk-In Shower?

The lack of privacy that comes with a walk-in shower can be an issue, especially if you share a bathroom.

However, you can resolve this problem with frosted glass panels or a shower curtain.
More worrying are the issues that come with improper installation.

A lack of ventilation can lead to high moisture levels in the entire bathroom, resulting in the development of mold or mildew.

The lack of a shower pan results in water spreading around the bathroom, causing the same problems. Again, you’ll minimize these drawbacks with proper installation.

Is a Walk-In Shower the Same As a Wet Room?

Though they’re similar, walk-in showers and wet rooms are different things. Wet rooms are typically far more open, with only a curtain potentially separating the shower from the rest of the room.

The drain for a wet room may also be located in the center of the bathroom, with all water flowing towards it thanks to a slight decline in the floor.

Walk-in showers usually offer a little more separation as they’re specific units rather than open-plan showers.

Many walk-in showers have glass panels and self-contained shower pans, which prevent moisture from entering the rest of the room.

Can You Install Underfloor Heating In a Walk-In Shower?

It’s possible to install underfloor heating in walk-in showers. However, the installation adds extra complications to the process, as well as the need for more plumbing.

You must also take even more care to ensure the room is completely waterproof as moisture seeping into underfloor heating systems can cause damage and potential danger.

Can You Install Walk-In Showers on Upper Floors?

Walk-in showers can be installed on any floor as long as your contractors understand the drainage issues that can arise. Generally speaking, an upper-floor walk-in shower requires some extra plumbing work.

As long as installers take the proper care to prevent leaks, create proper drainage, and waterproof the area, you can install a walk-in shower in any room that offers enough space.

Is a Walk-In Shower Worth the Cost?

With a return on investment of approximately 70%, walk-in showers don’t quite add as much value to your home as the cost of installation.

However, their value is measured in more than the dollar figure. Walk-in showers make your home more appealing to certain types of buyers and tenants. They also enhance accessibility and can create a more open and appealing aesthetic for your bathroom.

Costs can vary widely depending on several factors, including how much of the work you do yourself, the extent of the new plumbing required, and the materials used.

Still, a walk-in shower gives your bathroom a fresh and modern look, while making the room easier to use and clean.

If you’re considering installing a walk-in shower solely to increase the value of a property, you may find that other measures offer higher returns.

Basic cosmetic improvements cost far less and can add more value to your home for every dollar spent.

However, they do not transform the bathroom in the same way a walk-in shower does.

Average Costs For:
Most Homeowners Spent Between: Most People Spent: $5,350 - $13,670
Low End
$3,908
Average
$11,362
High End
$25,749

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code



About Ilan

Ilan G. has been working in the remodeling and construction industry for over 15 years. His focus is on construction planning and design as well as project cost estimating. Ilan also has a personal interest in interior design, as well as in unique DIY remodeling projects. Read more about Ilan


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