5 Ways Multifamily Professionals Can Create Sustainability in the Bathroom

The numbers are in: Millennials want sustainability, from what they purchase at the grocery store to the design of their homes.

According to a 2018 Nielsen study, three out of four millennials say they would be willing to pay for more sustainable options.

A survey conducted by The Guardian revealed that more than two-thirds of millennials “buy as many eco-friendly products as they can.”

As the most eco-conscious generation ever begins to outnumber the baby boomers and start families of their own, multifamily professionals have to start creating homes with millennials’ needs in mind. This means creating spaces that not only reduce waste and potential environmental impact, but also promotes the health and comfort of its tenants for years to come.

Here are 5 simple ways multifamily professionals create more sustainable bathrooms — without breaking the bank.

1. Ditch the bathtub.

It takes about 70 gallons to fill up a bathtub. A 5-10 minute shower, however, only uses between 10 and 25 gallons. Substituting a bathtub for a sleek, modern shower is a simple solution to cut down water usage.

2. Install low-flow toilets.

Toilet flushing accounts for nearly a quarter of all household water use — meaning tenants can literally be flushing savings down the drain. Dual-flush toilets that provide the option for using less water for liquid waste can reduce water consumption by up to 20% a year, while inexpensive tank inserts can save 0.5 to 1 gallon of water per flush. Low-flow shower heads can also save up to 3,000 gallons of water a year.

3. Install low-maintenance features meant to last a lifetime.

Using quality, durable materials means you can save bathing products from ending up in a landfill — and having to pay for replacements. Composite showers can stand up to decades of use, outlasting high-maintenance tile showers or low-quality acrylic inserts. Natural materials like porcelain, metal and recycled glass are also sustainable options for bathroom fixtures.

4. Get creative with lighting.

Play with natural lighting in the bathroom. This will not only cut down on daytime energy usage, it will also freshen and brighten up the space. Installing LED light bulbs are also a cheap, energy-efficient choice, as they use 75% less energy than incandescent lighting.

5. Account for inclusivity.

As the most diverse generation in the US, millennials value inclusivity and spaces that can be accessible to everyone. Adding reinforcement for grab bars and removable shower thresholds can be simple ways to keep the comforts of home within reach — without having to gut the shower and do a remodel.

For the next generation of renters, sustainability isn’t just about lowering the carbon footprint and reducing waste. It’s about creating spaces that improve the lifestyles of the tenants who live there for years to come.