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Bathtub Battle: Freestanding vs. Built-in Bathtubs For Remodels In Severna Park

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Finding The Perfect Soak

Freestanding soaking bathtub beneath windows

Are you dreaming of a bathroom remodel that turns your tired old tub into a blissful bathing haven? Wondering whether a standalone bathtub or an integrated tub would best suit your space and style?

Well, you’re about to discover the practical advantages and stylistic statements each can offer.

By the end of this post, you’ll know exactly which tub type will transform your bathing routine into a daily indulgence.

Which Tub Type Is More Popular In Severna Park?

We find that more people want freestanding tubs in larger bathrooms while they want built-in tubs in smaller ones. This is because freestanding tubs have a more elegant look and take up less space.

We also see that fixtures for built-in tubs cost less, and this tub style is easier to clean.

Similarities And Differences Between Freestanding Tubs And Built-In Tubs

Smaller bathroom with built in tub and shower combination


  • Both freestanding and built-in tubs can provide a relaxing bathing experience.
  • They can both be made from various materials, such as acrylic or cast iron.
  • Both types require careful consideration of the bathroom’s floor strength due to their potential weight, especially when filled with water.
  • Both require careful planning with regard to installation and plumbing setup.
  • They can both be incorporated into a variety of bathroom styles and designs.
  • Either one is a must-have for a primary bathroom.


  • Freestanding tubs are usually more of a design statement and can be placed anywhere in the bathroom, whereas built-in tubs are usually installed against a wall or in a corner.
  • Freestanding baths typically have a more luxurious look and feel, whereas built-in tubs are often more practical and functional.
  • The cost of freestanding bathtubs is generally higher due to their design and manufacturing complexity.
  • Built-in tubs often offer more storage options, such as shelves and tub edges, whereas freestanding tubs lack built-in storage.
  • Freestanding tubs are typically harder to clean around compared to built-in tubs.
  • Freestanding tubs may lose heat faster as they are surrounded by air, while built-in tubs, especially ones with insulation, can retain heat longer.
  • Installing a built-in bathtub can be more complex as it usually requires sealing, mounting, and adding surrounds, while freestanding tubs often only need a plumber for installation.

Freestanding Tubs Pros And Cons


Freestanding tubs (also called soaking tubs) stand independently, making a bold visual statement in any bathroom. Their popularity has skyrocketed in recent years due to their variety and the design statement they create.

Design Freedom: Can be placed anywhere in the bathroom.Price: Generally more expensive due to design complexity.
Style Variety: Wide range of styles and shapes available.Weight: Some models may require floor reinforcement.
Luxurious Look: Often associated with high-end spas.Limited Shower Options: Combining a shower can be challenging.
Easier Installation: Often only requires a plumber.Lack of Storage: No built-in storage options.
Size: Can be challenging to enter and clean around larger models.
Heat Retention: May lose heat faster.

Pros Of A Freestanding Tub


With freestanding tubs, you’re spoiled for choice when it comes to style, shape, and design.

Unlike a built-in bath, which often has design restrictions due to wall and tile placement, a freestanding tub offers limitless possibilities. This variety can profoundly impact your bathroom’s aesthetic, allowing you to craft a space that reflects your unique taste and personality.

Whether you’re aiming for a modern minimalistic look or prefer a more classic design, there’s a freestanding bathtub that will fit your vision.


Freestanding tubs are undoubtedly the stars of any bathroom they grace.

With their bold design and luxurious appeal, they echo the ambiance of high-end spas, providing an everyday escape within the comfort of your home.

Or, you can go old school and choose from different clawfoot tubs for a classic look.

A freestanding bathtub not only elevates your bathroom aesthetics but also enhances your bathing experience, making every soak feel like a pampering spa session.


One of the primary benefits of a freestanding tub is its relative ease of installation.

Unlike built-in tubs, which may require additional steps such as sealing and mounting, many freestanding tubs usually only need a plumber to fit the tub and connect the plumbing.

This simplicity could save you valuable time and potentially reduce labor costs.


With a freestanding tub, you’re not bound by bathroom walls.

This flexibility can revolutionize your bathroom layout, offering innovative ways to use your space.

Whether it’s centrally positioned to serve as a focal point or nestled against a window for a relaxing view during your soak, the placement of your tub can deeply personalize your bathroom experience.

Cons Of A Freestanding Tub


While freestanding tubs offer a plethora of advantages, they are generally more expensive due to their complex design and material.

The higher cost might not suit every remodel budget, potentially limiting their accessibility for some homeowners.


Freestanding tubs, especially heavy cast iron tubs, can be quite heavy.

This might require reinforcing the bathroom floor, leading to additional work and costs.

While lighter options like acrylic and fiberglass are available, they might not offer the same luxurious feel as heavier materials.


Combining a shower enclosure with a freestanding tub can be challenging due to the tub’s design and placement. This limitation might impact your bathroom experience if you enjoy both long soaks and quick showers.


Freestanding tubs generally lack built-in storage, unlike built-in tubs that often have edges and shelves to hold your essentials. You might need to invest in additional storage solutions, like rolling caddies or bathtub trays.


Some freestanding tubs can be quite large, making it difficult to get in or lean over. This can be an important consideration if you have mobility issues or prefer a more accessible bathing experience.

Built-In Tubs Pros And Cons

Built in bathtub with separate shower both with white marble surround

Built-in, or alcove tubs, are integrated against the bathroom walls. These tubs offer practicality and efficiently contain water in tub-shower combinations. You don’t have to choose between showers vs bathtubs with this option.

Cost-Effective: Generally lower cost than freestanding tubs.Limited Placement: Typically installed against a wall or in a corner.
Space-Efficient: Fits flush with walls, saving space.Less Style Variety: Design mainly depends on the surround.
More Storage: More built-in storage options.Complex Installation: Requires sealing, mounting, and adding surrounds.
Concealed Plumbing: Existing plumbing can be utilized and hidden.Design: Less visually striking compared to freestanding tubs.
Easier to Clean: Smaller size and simpler cleaning process.
Better Heat Retention: Often retains heat longer.

Pros Of A Built-In Tub


Built-in tubs generally come with a smaller price tag compared to their freestanding counterparts.

Their affordable cost can significantly impact your bathroom remodeling budget, providing room for you to splurge on other features like high-end fixtures or luxury tiles.

This cost-effectiveness doesn’t compromise quality or comfort, ensuring you enjoy a relaxing bathing experience without breaking the bank.

Space savings

For bathrooms with a compact floor plan, built-in tubs can be a smart choice.

They sit flush against walls, efficiently utilizing limited space. This space-saving feature can greatly enhance your bathroom experience, making the room feel less cluttered and more functional.


Built-in tubs often provide extra storage options, which is a significant advantage in a bathroom where storage is usually at a premium.

Built-in shelves or the tub edges can be used to hold bathing essentials. This practical feature can make your bathroom experience smoother and more enjoyable, keeping everything you need within arm’s reach.


Existing plumbing can usually accommodate a built-in tub, and the plumbing installation is concealed for a clean look.

This convenience can save you time and labor costs, and also spare you the visual clutter of exposed pipes, enhancing the overall aesthetic of your bathroom.

Easier to Clean

Built-in tubs, given their smaller size and position against walls, are often easier to clean compared to freestanding tubs.

This ease of maintenance not only helps keep your bathroom looking immaculate but also reduces the time and effort you need to spend on cleaning, giving you more time for enjoyable baths.

Cons Of A Built-In Tub


Built-in tubs offer less placement flexibility compared to freestanding tubs. As they are usually installed against a wall or in a corner, you might feel restricted in your bathroom layout options.


While there are still many styles available, built-in tubs generally offer fewer design choices compared to freestanding tubs.

They rely heavily on their surrounds for aesthetic appeal, which might limit your ability to express your personal style.


Installing a built-in tub can be more complex than a freestanding one.

It usually requires multiple steps, including sealing, mounting, and adding surrounds. This process could increase your bathroom remodeling timeline and potentially add to labor costs.


While beauty is subjective, freestanding tubs are often considered to make a stronger design statement than built-in ones.

Depending on your design preference, you might feel that a built-in tub lacks the aesthetic punch of a freestanding model.

Which Bathtub Is Best For You?

White freestanding tub with separate shower in white bathroom
Built in bathtub with jets and natural stone tile surround

Choosing between a freestanding and a built-in tub depends largely on your personal preferences, spatial constraints, and desired bathing experience.

Freestanding tubs can transform your bathroom into a spa-like retreat, giving you a luxurious, immersive soaking experience. They are an excellent choice if you prioritize aesthetics and relaxation in your bathing experience.

On the other hand, built-in tubs provide a practical, efficient solution for those who prefer quick, convenient baths or showers. With their space-saving design and additional storage, built-in tubs offer a functional, no-fuss bathing experience. They are an ideal choice for families or those with compact bathrooms.

You may also want to consider the cost to replace a bathtub, as it is different for each type.

Why You Need A Cohesive Bathroom Design

White bathroom with built in tub and attached shower

A well-curated, cohesive bathroom design not only enhances your daily bathing experience but also adds value to your home.

The tub, being a key feature of any bathroom, significantly contributes to this cohesiveness.

Whether you opt for a sleek, modern freestanding tub or a space-efficient built-in model, it should seamlessly blend with the rest of your bathroom design, creating a harmonious aesthetic flow.

A well-chosen tub can be a statement piece, setting the tone for your bathroom’s style.

It’s not just about the look, though – the right tub can also enhance functionality, adding practical advantages that make your bathroom more enjoyable and efficient to use. Therefore, when planning your bathroom remodel, it’s crucial to consider both the aesthetic and practical impact of your tub choice.

Tips For Designing The Best Bathroom Environment

A beautiful bathroom with a blue vanity cabinet freestanding bathtub shower and gold faucets

When designing your bathroom, the tub is just one piece of the puzzle.

It’s important to consider how it interacts with other elements in the room, including fixtures, tiles, storage, and lighting. Balance is key here – while your tub might be the star of the show, other features should complement it rather than compete with it.

In addition to aesthetic considerations, functionality should also be a top priority.

Ensure there’s sufficient space for movement, adequate storage for your essentials, and easy access to fixtures. Remember, a bathroom that looks beautiful but isn’t practical won’t be enjoyable to use.

Lighting plays a significant role too.

Whether it’s natural light streaming in from a window or strategically placed light fixtures, the right lighting can dramatically enhance the look and feel of your bathroom. It can highlight your tub, create a mood, and even make your bathroom look more spacious.

Last but not least, always consider the users.

The best bathroom design is one that suits your lifestyle and meets your needs. Whether it’s a luxurious freestanding tub for relaxing soaks or a built-in tub-shower combo for efficient bathing, your comfort and satisfaction should always be the guiding principles of your bathroom design.

Get A High-End Bathroom Remodel In Severna Park With Brucksch & Sons Contracting

Now you know the differences, pros, and cons of the two main types of bathtubs. Are you eager to enjoy a luxurious soak in a tub that perfectly suits your style and needs?

At Brucksch & Sons Contracting, we perform high-end bathroom remodels in Severna Park, ensuring your bathroom is a sanctuary of relaxation and rejuvenation. Whether you’re leaning toward a freestanding or a built-in tub, our team of skilled professionals is ready to bring your vision to life.

Fill out our contact form today or give us a call, and let’s start creating your dream bathroom!