Income property bathroom materials

4 Replies

Hey all. I’m house hacking a duplex in the Boston MA area and like most of the properties here mines kind of old. Built in 1930, poorly renovated by the original owners family friend or someone who cut corners. Long story short I need to Reno both full baths. One needs it sooner than the other and I want to use materials that will last through the wear and tear from my tenants.

It’s a small full bath with a tub. I’m debating a stand up shower instead of the tub.

From your experience, what types of materials/brand last longest for:

Bathroom floor

Stand up shower (would consider tile/grout work)

Tub/shower combo

Built in shelving vs cheap ikea/Lowe’s linen closet

After the bathroom in that unit I’ll be updating the kitchen. I’d love some idea for rental property kitchen materials as well.

Thank you!

Bathroom floor - tile will be the best for longevity and will withstand tenant turnovers. They do cost more to install than the laminate flooring with will pay for itself for resisting water damage.

Stand up shower (would consider tile/grout work) - go with tub

Tub/shower combo - keep the tube shower combo if possible. Most likely this is the only bathroom in the unit and you need to have the tub in case the tenant has a younger child. They will prefer that for kids. If it's not in great shape you can get the shower/tub cover ups from HD which will be in the range of $350-450. Nice and clean option, very easy to install. 

Consider putting in a shower door, this will help with water damage - one time cost that will last 5-10 years.

Built in shelving vs cheap Ikea/Lowe’s linen closet - spend the money on shelving, the other option will crumble with every tenant. 

tile everything the right way

large tiles = fewer grout lines

check out "home repair tutor" . they do a lot of great bathroom work and have good videos. no cut corners

I wouldn't suggest tile unless you have a high-end rental. There's some great linoleum product out there and it will work well for water resistance as long as it's installed correctly.

I agree with most everything Lien said except for the shower doors. Let the tenants put up a curtain to personalize colors. Easy to take out and throw away and less maintenance than doors.