How Much Do Hardwood Stairs Cost?

Nowadays, a staircase in a home is more than just a means to go from one level to another. Since staircases are often used and are prone to heavy traffic, it should be durable. Aside from that, many homes, at present, showcase the staircase.

An attractive hardwood staircase gives a home more character and class. It can be the Piece de Resistance in a home. That said, it is no wonder why hardwood staircases are very popular. Though there are several types of flooring, many homeowners prefer hardwood because of their quality, durability, and elegance.


interior dark hardwood floor staircase

Yes, hardwood stairs price can be considerable, but it is worth the cost. Moreover, hardwood flooring is also a healthier alternative compared to other types of flooring for the stairs because it is easy to clean and maintain.

Average Cost of Hardwood Stairs

The following are the average costs of the basic parts of a staircase:


The price of the materials will depend on the type of hardwood. The harder the wood, the more expensive will be the materials.

Tread $41.00-$96.00 (left/right return)

$49.00-$105.00 (double return)

 1″ x 11-1/2″”, 36” length
Riser $12.75-$44.00 3/4″ x 8″, 36” length
Nosing $3.50 1-1/4″, 12” length
Bullnosed Tread $32.00-$87.00 1″ x 11-1/2″, 36” length
Handrail $6.25-$23.25 2-5/8″ wide x 1-7/8″ height, oval
Baluster $2.50-$12.75 1 1/4″ square, 34” length
Newel $225.00-$375.00 Contractor Grade Flat Panel Box
Skirtboard $7.70-$25.50 3/4” x 10-1/2”

The labor component of wood stair installation cost, on the other hand, averages at $60.00 per step.


A safe estimate for an average hardwood stairs would be about $100 to $200 per step which can even cost so much more depending on a lot of factors as discussed in this article.


The design specification of the staircase will determine the quantity and eventual cost of materials. The average labor costs include only the costs for basic labor installation, basic area preparation, and cleaning. All other costs for indirect materials and indirect labor, which are typically minimal, should also be taken into account.

Other Costs to Consider


In upgrading an existing staircase to a hardwood staircase, consider the following other costs:

  • Cost of installing or improving the subfloors.

If the existing stairs do not have a subfloor, the floor under the flooring, or if there is a problem with the quality of the subfloor, then this should be addressed. Subfloors should be durable because they provide the needed support for the flooring. If there are problems with the existing subfloor, additional costs will be needed to fix it.

  • Cost of removing the existing flooring and staircase.

If the existing stairs used carpet or softwood as flooring, the cost of removing the existing flooring is also another cost to consider. The same goes if the whole or parts of the existing staircase are to be removed to make room for the hardwood staircase of a different design.

  • Cost of improving/installing structures needed by the new staircase.

There are instances when the existing structures of the home have to be reinforced to accommodate the new hardwood staircase. If this will be the case, then it will also mean additional costs.


For the above specific jobs, it would be best to get a quotation from a local carpenter who will visit the site and do the estimate.

Buying Tips

Installing hardwood staircase is a big cost decision. It is important that a homeowner does research and answer the following important points:

  • How much is the budget? And
  • What design will work well for the home?

The answers to the above questions will determine many of the cost decisions to make.

StairSuppliesTM and Uptown Floors both offer various types of materials for hardwood staircase.


Hardware Stairs Cost Factors

Some primary factors play key roles in determining the cost. The type of hardwood, the design of stairs, the cost of labor, and the location of the property are all drivers of cost.

  • Type of Hardwood

Many types of wood are available as material for flooring. The type of wood to be used should be durable so that it can withstand the heavy traffic. Usually, the flooring preferred is a type of hardwood because of the harder the wood, the more durable it is.

With the safety concern for stairs, a homeowner is expected to prefer a more durable type of wood. The Janka Hardness Test measures the hardness of different types of wood. It is a guide in deciding which type of wood to use as a flooring. However, one must remember that the harder the wood, the more labor-intensive it would be to install it. Thus, the harder the wood, the higher will be the cost to install hardwood stairs.


  • Design of stairs

Stairs can be as simply-designed as a straight flight of stairs, or it can be as complicated as one would like it. If the staircase’s design is winding or have landings, it is expected to be more expensive.

Also to be considered is the location of the staircase. A staircase prominently placed in a home becomes its focal point. Thus, it is expected to have a more intricate or grandiose design, which is more costly than simple designs.

  • Cost of Labor

Installation of a staircase requires many labor hands and labor hours. Thus, a chunk of the total hardwood stairs price is expected to cover the cost of labor. A professional carpenter with many years of experience with hardwood staircases would, obviously, cost more because of their credibility.


  • Location of the property

The cost of materials and labor vary per locality. Also, when materials and labor are sourced out-state, it is expected to be more expensive because of the added freight cost and travel expenses.

What Else You Need to Know

Staircases have different shapes, sizes, and designs. A staircase design can either be standard or customized. The measurements of a staircase can also differ depending on the standards and the distance between the levels to be connected. The Stair Calculator computes the various parameters involved in the construction of stairs. It is also important to consult the Building Code of the locality for appropriate guidelines as the provisions for staircases may differ from place to pace.


Since the estimated total wood stair installation cost can be considerable, the question is can one DIY a hardwood staircase? Yes. Doing so would save a homeowner the cost of labor, a big percentage of the total project cost. One’s decision to DIY or hire professional carpenters will depend on:

  • DIY skills

DIY projects are very popular nowadays. Many sites offer advice on how to DIY a particular project, thereby teaching the basic skills. Some even provide an easy three-step guide to building a basic wood staircase.


  • Magnitude of the project

It is easy to DIY a small and basic project. The more complex the hardwood staircase’s design is, the harder it will be to DIY it.

After the staircase installation, there are ways to improve its safety. Since wooded floorings can be slippery, a homeowner can choose to install non-slip treads or carpeted runners.

A hardwood staircase in a home is an investment, but it is one that will be cost-efficient in the long run. A hardwood staircase can last for many years, if not a lifetime, and can increase the value of the home.


A renowned home improvement expert with almost 20 years of experience in building and repairing beautiful homes in the USA. He's a civil engineer by profession.

Leave a Comment