What Is a Three-Quarter Bathroom? (Plus 3/4 Vs 1/2 Vs. Full Bath)

what is a 3/4 bath

One of the major selling points of any house is how many bathrooms it has. Not only that, but the overall value of each bathroom in the house is a deciding factor. It can be confusing when you see “1/2 bath” or “3/4” bath.

So, what is a ¾ bath? A ¾ bath is a bathroom equipped with a toilet, sink and shower. The only thing missing from a ¾ bath is a bathtub.

The water sources in a bathroom, i.e. a shower, sink, or toilet, is what determines the overall makeup of a bathroom. With that said, it can be pretty confusing deciphering the difference between a ¾ bath, a ½ bath and a full bath.

Let’s explore what makes a ¾ bath what it is and how it compares to the alternatives.

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What Is a 3/4 Bath In Real Estate?

A 3/4 bath consists of a shower, toilet, and sink.  A 3/4 bath is one of the most common bathroom configurations and it offers a lot of value to the homeowner.

You may think that the lack of a tub decreases the value of the bathroom, but in fact, the opposite is true in some cases. For instance, if the ¾ bath features a walk-in shower, it is more valuable than if it was a full bath with a tub.

When compared to a ½ bath, however, a ¾ bath offers a lot more value.

3/4 Bath Vs. 1/2 Bath

The difference between a 1/2 bath and a 3/4 bath is that half baths only consist of a toilet and sink with no shower. Often times, homes with multiple bathrooms will have at least one ½ bath. Many people refer to ½ baths as “powder rooms” because of the mirror and sink set up.

They have less value than a ¾ bath because there is no shower or tub provided.  For some homeowners, the prospect of converting a ½ bath into a ¾ bath is an interesting prospect. While it is possible, adding a shower to a ½ bath can be quite expensive.

You would need to have a floor drain installed and connected to a waste line to turn a ½ bath into a ¾ bath. If you have a ½ bath that you want to be converted to a ¾ bath, consult a contractor to find out your best options.

3/4 Bath Vs. Full Bath

A full bath is different than a ¾ bath because it features a tub as well as a shower, sink, and toilet. There is no step above a full bath as it contains every possible element that makes up a bathroom.

Full baths are perfect for families because of the versatility that they offer. Particularly families with small children because of the addition of the tub.

According to the National Association of Home Builders, having or adding a full bathroom to your home increases the house’s value by 20%.  In houses with multiple bedrooms, typically, the full bath is the bathroom nearest to the master bedroom.

There is no iron clad rule for where a full bath is located in a house, however. A full bath is not limited by the configuration of the tub either. That means that whether it is a shower and tub combo, or the tub is separated from the shower, it is still a full bath.

Some homeowners looking to increase the value of their home before selling will convert ½ or ¾ baths into full baths. Much like kitchens, bathrooms are a huge selling point for prospective buyers.

3/4 Bath Vs.  1/4 Bath

When compared to a ¾ bath, a ¼ (quarter) bath is barebones as it only contains a toilet. Often times, ¼ baths have a sink outside the door or in close proximity, but not in the bathroom itself. Compared to ½, ¾ or full baths, a ¼ bath is the most basic option.

In most cases, the reason behind a quarter bath lacking other elements like a shower or tub is because of the size of the room.  They are less appealing than ½, ¾ or full baths to many people because of how limited they are in fixtures.

With that said, homes that have multiple bathrooms with one of them being a ¼ bath does not make it less valuable. As with ½ and ¾ baths, a ¼ bath can be converted and added onto if necessary.

Is Converting to a Full Bath Worth It?

That is ultimately a matter of choice, but considering the added value a full bath offers, most homeowners would find it worth it. The additional 20% increase in value that converting a ½ or ¾ bath into a full bath can put more money in your pocket later.

However, converting a bathroom to a full bath only increases the home’s value if there are equal numbers of bedrooms and bathrooms before the remodeling. If you have a 3 bedroom, 2 and ¾ bath house, turning that ¾ into a full bath will bolster the value.

Converting a ¾ bath to a full bath is an expensive prospect, however. You can expect to spend between $3000 and $25,000 to convert a ½ or ¾ into a full bath. If that conversion would make the number of bedrooms and bathrooms equal, that could be a worthwhile investment.

Can You Change a Full Bath Into a ¾ Bath?

Yes, you absolutely can. If your house has multiple bathrooms already, then converting a full bath into a ¾ bath should not depreciate the value of the home. There are several reasons that someone may want to change a full bath to a ¾ bath, such as:

  • Freeing up space
  • Saving on water bills
  • Putting in a larger shower

Eliminating the tub from a full bath turning it into a ¾ bath is a way to open up the bathroom more. For homeowners that don’t take baths and do not have children, that is a great option. However, removing a tub from a full bath is still expensive.

After the cost of labor and parts, removing a tub from a full bath can cost over $1,000. You should put some serious thought into converting a full bath to a ¾ bath before doing it.

What is a Water Closet?

A water closet is a private room inside of a bathroom containing a toilet. Water closets offer more privacy than any other bathroom configuration.

Contrary to some homeowner’s beliefs, a water closet does not have anything to do with fixtures. Aside from the fact that a toilet is a fixture, of course, but it does not suggest that there are added fixtures.

In other words, you could have a ½ bath and install an addition for a water closet and it would still be a ½ bath. Typically speaking, water closets are only found in bigger homes with large bathrooms.

There are many ¾ bath bathrooms that have water closets, but they are more common in full baths.

What Does it Cost to Install A Brand New 3/4 Bath?

3/4 bath installation

Installing a brand new 3/4 bath where no bath previously existed can cost up to $25,000. The costs involved in adding on a brand new ¾ bath include:

  • Sink and vanity
  • Electricity
  • Parts and labor
  • Toilet
  • Pipes
  • Flooring

The biggest chunk of the cost of adding a new ¾ bath is labor. You will need to pay electricians, plumbers, and a contractor to put in the walls and flooring.

If the new ¾ bath that you want to put in is in an already existing room, such as a closet, it could be less costly. Having water lines added to the bathroom is a huge cost. Each fixture can cost up to $1,500 or more.

For a ¾ bath, that means you would be spending $4,500 or more in pipes alone. The price can vary based on the sink and the material of the pipes. If you are putting in a full bath, that means you will also have to pay an additional $1,500 in piping for the tub.

If you want to put in a brand new ¾ bath, consider the costs compared to the value it will add to your home.

How Can You Save Money When Upgrading To a 3/4 Bath?

The main way that you can save money when converting a quarter or half bath to a ¾ bath is to cut back on labor if possible. Labor accounts for up to 75% of the cost of bumping a half bath up to a ¾ bath.

If you are able to find and work with a contractor that will work at a reasonable rate, you can save a small fortune. With that said, contractors can be expensive and sometimes there is just no way around that.

In that case, your best bet is to choose materials and fixtures that are inexpensive. On average, it costs up to $6,800 to install a new shower in your bathroom. If you want to save some money, maybe cut down on the amount of tile in the shower.

You don’t need tile going all the way to the ceiling, even if your contractor pushes for it. Instead, opt for dial for the entire height of the shower and leave the walls as they were when the shower ends.

If a sink is what you need to add to make your bathroom a 3/4 bath, it can cost up to $640 or more. To save money, request cheaper piping such as PVC or CPVC to save $200 or more.

Does the Amount of Water Fixtures Affect Your Water Bills?

Yes, it does, but the cost varies depending on usage. For example, a full bath with a bathtub has the potential to cost you a lot in water bills.

That is because medium to large sized bathtubs can consume upwards of 60 or 70 gallons of water. When you compare that to the 10-15.8 gallons roughly consumed by an average shower, a bath can cost a lot in water bills.

Investing in a low flow shower head can save you 60% on your water bills. That is because you will consume roughly 178 or more gallons of water each month.

Toilets and sinks are a necessity in any home, so foregoing them to save on water would be a mistake. Years ago, toilets used to consume up to 7 gallons of water with each flush. In today’s world, however, toilets consume no more than 1.6 gallons of water for environmental reasons.

There are ways that you can save additional money on water bills with each of your bathroom fixtures, such as:

  • Shortening your showers
  • Avoiding taking baths, or filling tubs completely
  • Do not leave sink running while brushing teeth
  • Invest in a low flow toilet
  • Choose a low flow showerhead

Be careful with your usage and choose water efficient fixtures.

Related Questions

Q: Is it considered a 3/4 bath if there is a sink, tub, and toilet?

A: No, it is not, and that is an uncommon configuration. A ¾ exclusively refers to the presence of a shower, sink, and toilet.

Q: What is it called if you have a full bath and decide to add a jacuzzi to it?

A: It is still called a full bath. When listing the house, you may call it “full bath with a jacuzzi”, but that does not make it a 1 and ¼ bath as there is no such thing.

Q: Will the lack of a full bath make it hard to sell my house?

A: No, it will not. It may limit who will actually buy it as it may exclude larger families with children, though. Many prospect buyers are happy enough with ¾ baths.

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What Did We Learn?

A ¾ bath is a valuable part of any home. The only difference between a ¾ and full bath is a tub. Having a ¾ bath in your home is more valuable than quarter or half baths.

If you choose your materials and contractor wisely, you can upgrade a quarter or half bath to a ¾ bath. The same can be said for upgrading a 3/4 bath to a full bath.

The more water fixtures such as sink, toilet, shower, and tub that you have, the more valuable the bathroom is.

Upgraded Home Team

We are a team of passionate homeowners and home improvement enthusiasts who enjoy sharing home improvement, housekeeping, decorating, and gardening tips with other homeowners! Whether you're looking for a step-by-step guide on fixing an appliance, cleaning your carpet, or even putting up a fence, we've got you covered.

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