Bathroom for life: AKW helps futureproof tenant bathrooms

AKW shows that it is possible to build cost-effective inclusivity into a bathroom’s design, so it is fit for purpose, no matter what the tenants needs. How is this possible? By using AKW’s latest cost-effective ‘Bathroom for Life’ solution.

Futureproofing key for housing association managers

The team at AKW interviewed a range of housing association managers in March 2021, to ask them what their biggest needs were when it came to tenant bathrooms. Not surprisingly, ‘easy to keep clean’ and ‘low in maintenance’ were high up the list, along with ‘long-lasting’ and ‘contemporary looking’. One surprise however was the demand mentioned by all of them for bathrooms that were ‘as future-proof as possible’.

Building flexibility into the bathroom space

As tenants age and their needs change, there is an increasing burden on housing associations to provide accessible, inclusive bathroom conversions. However, these can be disruptive to tenants and consuming on time and resources. So, how can flexibility be built into the bathroom space that delivers cost-effective, future-proofed inclusive bathrooms? Well, the key lies in building this flexibility into the fabric of the space.

bathroom for life

Image: AKW’s Bathroom for Life solution makes bath-to-wet room refurbishments quick and easy’


AKW’s Bathroom for Life solution

What can housing providers do to provide both value-for-money and flexible solutions to keep all tenants happy? With over 35-years of experience of working within the care sector, AKW has brought this knowledge to the wider public sector housing category, by creating the ‘Bathroom for Life’ solution.

Bathroom for Life enables a wet room waste to be installed when a bathroom is being refurbished or built for the first time. The area can then be waterproofed using AKW’s safety flooring, before a bath is fitted. In the event of tenant-needs changing, the bath can be removed, and the space quickly transformed into a wet room at a fraction of the cost of a full inclusive bathroom refurbishment. This solution works in the other direction too. When general-needs accommodation is let again and the next occupants require a more traditional bathroom layout, a bath can then be re-fitted quickly and simply.

Bathroom for Life benefits:

- Quick to change from bath to wet room/wet room to bath = minimising tenant disruption
- Can quickly adapt to suit changing tenant needs
- Cost-effective solution to providing adapted bathrooms
- Offers housing stock inclusivity as and when required

The Bathroom for Life solution also minimises any adaptation costs by reducing the amount of building work needed, as well as disruption to tenants. Once installed, it takes approximately half a day to either install a bath or take the bath out and return it to a wet room. Typically, the price difference between a Bathroom for Life installation and a traditional bathroom refurbishment or new build is £500.   

Easy to keep clean and low in maintenance

The pandemic has also shown how difficult routine maintenance of tenant properties can be. As well as ‘future proofing’, mould was highlighted in the AKW research as a significant bugbear for maintenance managers. With this in mind AKW has made sure that the company’s new Beautiful Bathrooms collection of baths, screens, brassware, Bathroom for Life products and showers includes wall panels. These are easy to clean and grout-free and come in a range of finishes. They have long lasting antimicrobial properties and are on average 25% cheaper to install than tiles.

Although there is increasing pressure on housing stock to become even more accessible, manufacturers are working hard to help social landlords provide ‘real-world’ solutions. Thanks to companies such as AKW, many housing providers are saving time and building long-term flexibility into their housing stock.  

Click here to find out more about AKW’s Bathroom for Life or Beautiful Bathrooms collection

For more information, please contact AKW on 01905 823298, Email: