Renovations

Renovating your staircase is a perfect way to spruce up your entryway; and while most people get a general idea on what they want to happen, it’s often best to read more and reassess your plans before starting your project. Our blog on renovations can give you a better idea on designs, costs, and safety of your stairs.

5 Budget-Friendly Stair Renovation Ideas

You may not be aware that your staircase can serve as a rich architectural element instead of just being a boring functional structure. In addition, you don’t even have to spend a fortune renovating your outdated or insipid stairs. 

Here is the list of 5 budget-friendly stair renovation ideas you may want to try. 

1) Add a new carpet runner

A carpet runner will not just make your stairway look more elegant, but it can also provide traction to prevent slip and fall accidents and absorb noise when making trips up and down the stairs. 

Opt for a runner that can cover most of the stair’s width, or at least 80% of the tread. By showing a small amount of floor on each side of the tread, you can create a beautiful contrast between the floor and the fabric; plus, the thin border lines create a longer, more elegant-looking carpet. 

Meanwhile, the ideal color for your runner depends on what you want to achieve. For instance, if you want a little pop of color, go for something with a vibrant hue or pattern, or if you are into a more serene effect, choose a more subdued color. 

These are the other things you have to consider when choosing a carpet runner: 

  • Choose a fabric that can withstand high traffic (nylon and polyester are hard-wearing synthetic fabrics, the same thing with wool with a small amount of synthetic blend). 
  • Opt for a carpet that is relatively thick but not too “fluffy.” Find the right balance between softness and durability. 

2) Consider painted runners

If you like the look of stair runners but hate the process of installation or the upkeep that they require (such as regular vacuuming), you may want to consider painted runners, which are an easy DIY weekend project. 

When it comes to the colors and patterns, the right one depends on your personal taste. However, there are some basic guidelines to keep in mind. 

Allow at least 4 inches between the edge of the painted runner and the wall. 

For a more finished look, fill the cracks with wood filler, sand the surface, and apply primer (if the surface has never been painted ) before painting your stairs. 

To ensure clean edges, apply painter’s tape before painting. And to prevent paint from seeping under the tape, seal its edge by applying some base color and allowing it to dry before painting the actual runner. 

3) Paint the balusters

A quick way to improve your worn-out or outdated stair posts is to repaint them. While you can never go wrong with white, you can also choose a more vibrant or “playful” color if you want to give your staircase a trendier look. 

But if you have some qualm in painting your hardwood stair posts, wood stain is a good alternative, especially if you are into rustic effect. 

4) Add a splash of color to the stair risers

You can cover your stair risers with vinyl or wallpaper to give your stairs a splash of color. The good thing about this makeover is that it requires minimal investment and effort: You can simply peel and stick the vinyl decals onto the vertical surface of the stair. 

In case you get tired of your vinyl decals or want another pattern or color, they are easy to remove. Simply warm them with a hairdryer before you peel them off the stair risers. 

5) Add a staircase molding

Adding a staircase molding to your walls is a surefire way to make it look more opulent without having to do major renovations or spending thousands of dollars. Another bonus: This is a relatively easy and quick DIY project. 

If you need staircase molding, balustrade, handrail, newel post, or other parts, contact iStairs. Inc. at 916-853-1499 or visit their showroom at 11270 Pyrites Way, Gold River, California. Aside from selling high-quality stair parts, they also install, repair, and renovate stairways in NorCal. 

How to Choose the Right Staircase for Your House

While a staircase is an “architectural” necessity–connecting one floor to another– it doesn’t have to be boring. With different types of staircases to choose from, you can always find something that suits your taste, your budget, and your home’s design. 

Budget 

The cost of a staircase primarily depends on the material and its design. In general, straight stairs style (stairs without any change in direction) and stairs made of aluminum metal are more affordable than solid timber staircases and split or bifurcated staircases which are commonly found in grand homes. 

Occupants 

If there are seniors and children in the family, a good rule of thumb is to choose a staircase design with landing plates and handrails. While the avant-garde and minimalist look of a floating staircase might appeal to you, it is not practical or even dangerous if you have small kids at home. 

Safe Design 

A safe design doesn’t necessarily mean a boring-looking staircase. These are tried-and-tested ways to ensure that your stairs are safe for everyone, including children and people with mobility issues. 

  • Install rail grips and add a second railing. 
  • Make sure the steps have a “gentler” rise. 
  • Choose stairs with longer runs. 
  • Avoid types of staircase with solitary steps, which are “unpredictable.”
  • Increase lighting.  
  • Prevent slip and fall accidents by adding a carpet runner. Some wood and stone staircases are easy to clean, but their surface can be slippery, especially when damp or wet. 

Materials 

There are different kinds of materials used to make staircases; they include timber, aluminum, steel, stone, marble, concrete, glass, wrought iron, glass, wire rope, brick, to name a few. Oftentimes, two or more materials are combined to create a functional and stylish staircase. 

From the interior design’s perspective, the “ideal” material depends on your home style and the “texture” you want to create. For instance, wood and carpet runners (fabric) are “warm” to the eyes, while stone and glass are considered as “cold” materials. 

Space

The amount of space and location will also determine the right types of staircase. For instance, a straight staircase is ideal if you want more room on the upper floor and don’t mind if it eats up more space in the area below. 

In contrast, a spiral staircase eats up less space in the downstairs area but requires a larger opening in the ceiling above. 

If you want the spiral staircase look but don’t like to sacrifice space on the upper floor, you may opt for a combination staircase design that combines straight and spiral treads. 

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Staircase Designs 

The right staircase design depends on your space and style. For instance, spiral staircases are ideal for tight spaces and can also serve as a focal point in your home with the right material and structural design. 

Glass stairwells, meanwhile, are ideal if you like the minimalist look or want to utilize the natural light, which makes any space appear bigger than it is. 

But if you’re into a grand look, you may want to consider a double or split staircase, which consists of two staircases leading to a broad flight at the bottom that is often situated facing the home’s front door to create a more dramatic entrance. 

Contrary to popular belief, you can turn your staircase into a focal point of your home or at least use it to set the tone for a room. For instance, dark wood banisters combined with matte black metal inserts can create a unique rustic staircase. 

To learn more about the different types of staircase, contact iStairs at 916-853-1499 or visit their showroom at 11270 Pyrites Way, Gold River, California, which is just a 30-minute drive east of Sacramento. 

What are the Different Styles of Stair Railings?

Treat your staircase as one of the focal points of your home instead of just an afterthought. Thus, make sure that you choose a design that reflects your home’s interior and architectural design.

Let’s explore the most popular types of stair railing designs listed below. 

Craftsman Stair Style

The Craftsman Style combines the warmth of wood with the coldness of metal, which reflects craftsmanship, balance, simplicity, and nature.  

Craftsman Newel Posts – The Craftsman-inspired, classic mission-style newel posts exhibit simplicity and balance through their recessed panels and clean lines. The posts highlight the natural warm colors and beauty of wood grain patterns while providing anchors for the stair railing.

Craftsman Balusters – With clean lines, patterns, and contrasting texture of metals and wood, the craftsman balusters emphasize quality workmanship. 

Each patterning style provides a unique effect. For instance, complex patterns allow the eyes to rest on the panels as a whole, whereas shorter and simpler ones make the railings appear more homogenous. Meanwhile, the use of elegant rectangular patterns is a popular choice for craftsman balusters.

Craftsman Railing – The railing profile sets the overall look of your balustrade. For instance, classically styled railings exude simplicity and neatness, whereas those considered modern or avant-garde typically have a sleeker, “more utilitarian” appearance. However, both designs complement the overall look of the Craftsman style.

Modern Stair Style

The modern style favors minimalism, spaciousness, and natural light. Polished metal materials that appear “cold” such as stainless steel, copper, brass, and aluminum, are commonly found in this stair style.

The metal stairs appear more modern or even avant-garde when they come in an asymmetric shape with low-profile fixtures and fasteners. 

Modern Newel Posts – Modern railing styles commonly use minimalist newel posts that are directly attached to the floor rather than on the first step. 

Minimalist newel posts are often made of warm wood combined with cold polished metals like stainless steel or brushed nickel, creating this “subdued” look.

Modern Balusters – Modern balusters allow natural light to pass through, making the home interior appear more spacious. 

They also use contrasting colors and textured metals such as cables instead of traditional wood or heavily embellished metals. 

Horizontal cable balusters add some tinge of uniqueness and continuity to the staircase. In addition, the use of glass with stainless steel connectors has also become a popular choice since glass allows the natural light to pass through, resulting in a more spacious, airier ambiance. 

Modern Railing – Simplicity does not equate to an insipid, uninteresting design. In fact, modern handrails can serve as a focal point or even a conversation starter if they come in asymmetric shapes of metal, glass, or wood that blur the line between the railing and baluster.

Traditional Stair Style

The traditional stair style symbolizes timeless beauty and “hominess,” especially when the warm woods and metals are meticulously arranged in symmetrical proportions. 

This stair style design combines different opposing textures of wood and polished metal, which results in a welcoming, balanced look. 

Traditional Newel Posts – Meticulously carved and richly stained, the traditional newel posts create a welcoming atmosphere. In essence, these posts exhibit detailed profiles, carved work, and integration of Victorian ornamentation, which all create a mood of warmth and elegance.

Traditional Balusters – The traditional style is notable for its semi-ornate metal balusters and wooden spindles. Often, the design comes with dark metal balusters with iron knuckles or carved wooden spindles. Some designs even use them together in an interspersed pattern.

Traditional Railing – To achieve an elegant, classic look, traditional railings are combined with newel posts and balusters. 

Traditional railing, which are generally made of sculpted wood, exhibits balance and order. 

The railing’s wood tone and texture must be the same as the posts and balusters’ to achieve the traditional look. 

While the best rail style design should reflect your home’s interior and architectural design, you should also consider its functionality. After all, the railing’s practical purpose is to assist you in your climb and descent. 

To know more about rail style design and installation, call iStairs at 844-STAIR-4U

iStairs is a residential and commercial stair contractor. It also sells quality stair parts to DIYers and homeowners. 

Why are wooden steps more hygienic than carpet?

With the situation the world is in right now, hygiene has become more critical than ever. People have started to be more conscious of their surroundings, especially those frequently being used or touched by others. And while it is hard to control such factors in public areas, there’s a lot we can do to make sure our homes stay more hygienic. 

It’s very common in the United States to have a carpeted staircase. After all, there is great merit in having so. According to the American Journal of Emergency Medicine, more than 1 million Americans injure themselves on stairs each year. While most cases only result in minor injuries, it is estimated that these accidents’ direct and indirect costs amount to $92 billion annually. Carpet staircases provide better cushioning and traction compared to wood. They also trap heat, which helps warm your house during the colder months.  

However, carpet staircases are very unhygienic. They harbor all kinds of dirt, dust, pet dander, pests, etc. They are also painfully hard to clean. What makes it worse is that staircases are high-traffic areas within the home, making them more susceptible to these. 

Having a wooden staircase is a more hygienic option. You may find yourself sweeping it often, but it is only because the dirt doesn’t sink deep into it, unlike on carpet. 

Think about all these things that may have been hiding under your carpet staircase: 

Bugs

Carpets can be a home for different kinds of bugs. Bed bugs, fleas, dust mites, and carpet beetles are notable ones. The environment lets them proliferate and makes them difficult to remove. You wouldn’t want your staircase to be a breeding ground of pests. They can bring you and your family all kinds of diseases.  

Molds

Another big problem with carpet is that it absorbs many fluids and moisture. If you spill any food or drink on it, it will seep deep into the carpet fibers very fast. That creates a perfect environment for growing molds. Molds can give your house an unpleasant smell, and the spores they produce can trigger allergies.  

Skin

Yes, skin. The average human sheds about 8 pounds of dead skin each year, leaving a trail of dead skin cells wherever they go. If you have a carpeted staircase, some of those probably got trapped between the fibers, where they become food for dust mites. Nasty.  

Pollen

At certain times of the year, pollen becomes a real problem for those suffering from hay fever. Carpet staircases don’t help at all. When pollen seeps into the house through the doors and windows, or even by hitching on your clothes, they may find their way to the carpet, sticking there for a long time.  

Pet dirt

If you own a pet, it’s pretty much automatic that some of their dirt gets trapped in the carpet. But even without a pet, your shoes pick up bits of animal waste just by simply walking outside. This dirt gets wiped off onto the carpet when you get home. 

These things are what’s lingering in your carpet staircase, even if you thought you’d cleaned them thoroughly. It’s challenging to be sure that your carpet staircase is completely clean; that’s why it’s more advisable to have a wooden staircase at home. You won’t have to worry about the things mentioned above with a wooden staircase. After all, there are things you can do to make your wooden staircase less accident-prone. 

So if you’re planning to switch to a wooden staircase, contact iStairs! We are your number 1 custom stair builder in Northern California! We can build a staircase for you just the way you like it. Call us at 844-STAIR-4U, and let’s get started

What Are Good Modern Design Ideas For My Glass Railings?

Modern style is still at the forefront of architecture as we enter 2021. We’re expecting to see more global, ecological, and inclusive designs this year. People now favor open spaces, natural light, and minimalism when designing their homes. One way to do this is by using glass railings on staircases. 

Glass railings offer a whole lot of advantages in both style and function. They can highlight cleanliness, minimalism, and open space. Glass allows natural light to flow inside the home. It is also more resistant to corrosion and extreme temperatures. Glass panels do not corrode when exposed to water. When it comes to safety, glass railings are top-notch too. They are not vulnerable to surface cracking, and tempered glass that is used for railing does not shatter, even when cracked. Another thing is that glass can be easily cleaned and maintained. 

Given these, many people now consider using glass stair railings inside their houses. There are a lot of options you can choose from when it comes to glass railings, and there is one that will surely fit your home’s aesthetic. 

To give you ideas, we’ve listed some of the best glass railing designs here! 

Rustic Modern Staircase with Reclaimed Timbers 

This staircase showcases the old and new. It gives a beautiful contrast between rustic and modern architecture. The reclaimed timbers bring a unique aesthetic. If you want your staircase to be an eye-catcher, this may be for you. 

Oak and Fir Mono-Stringer 

If you want your home to present a wooden look, the oak and fir mono-stringer design will suit it best. It has a clean and straightforward style. This staircase is ideal for loft-style houses. 

Open Rise Walnut Stair with Curved Glass Railing 

This staircase features a stunning curved clamped glass. The stainless steel posts match well with the oak stairs and handrail. This design creates a warm and modern atmosphere for the house. 

Steel and Concrete Mono Stringer with Glass Railing 

A combination of walnut, concrete, steel, and glass — this staircase achieved an industrial look without sacrificing cleanliness. It exemplifies contrast and modernity. It is perfect for a house that prioritizes concrete in its look. 

Miami Railing Design 

This Miami-inspired staircase uses an all-glass railing without posts. It has wood on top of the glass so you can safely hold on to the railings. The all-glass railing gives an unobstructed view of the stairs. 

Open Rise Maple Stair with Curved Railing 

Curved staircases always give a sophisticated feeling. This open rise maple staircase with curved glass railing can be a centerpiece in any home.  

Dadoed Glass Railing 

This staircase combines dadoed glass panels, mission posts, and Hampton A rail. It balances modernity and elegance. The glass panels give an airy feel. 

White Oak Open Rise Staircase with Glass Railing 

Large glass panels that are held together by stainless steel standoffs, clamps, and posts run along the side of this white oak open rise staircase. It boasts spaciousness as well as a unique, clean visual. 

White Oak Mono Stringer with Glass and Stainless Steel Railing 

Mono stringer staircases give a stylish, modern vibe. Couple it with glass railings and a stainless steel handrail, then it becomes even more beautiful. This staircase uses white oak, and a white background will make it look best. 

A Final Word About Modern Staircase Railing Designs

Are you looking to renovate your staircase or building a new house? iStairs is here for you. We’ll take care of everything and make sure your stairs will look just how you want them to be. From design to installation, iStairs is your best choice for custom staircases. Let’s talk about it! Contact us, and let’s create your dream staircase

How Do I Renovate an Old Staircase?

A staircase is an important part of your home. It is one of the first things you see as you walk into the house, so making sure it’s always in good shape is a nice way to greet yourself and other visitors who will be welcomed in your home.  However, like all parts of the house, sometimes the staircase can start showing damages due to age or wear and tear.

Renovating an older staircase yourself can be challenging, but definitely doable. You won’t need to spend much to fix it, you just need a few DIY skills, a lot of patience, and a lot of effort. Most staircases can look brand new just by adding a new skirt board and reworking the antique handrail. If you think your old staircase is due for a retouch, here are some easy steps for a simple yet effective renovation project:

1. Draw up a Plan

A successful project requires careful planning, and this DIY task is no exception. You need to make a detailed plan first before busting out your tools to ensure that you don’t forget any important parts and that you will be able to do everything you want to.

A worn-out staircase can still be rehabilitated given that the framing still holds strong. The first step of planning is determining if you will be repairing or completely replacing certain components of the staircase. The usual suspects of wear and tear in a staircase are the handrail and its balusters, treads, risers, or the skirt board. 

If you opt to purchase replacement parts, make sure you can properly identify each part so that you won’t make a mistake at the shop. Also, consider if you want to get the same models as replacements or if you want modifications. For instance, you can choose to upgrade to winder steps if you feel that you need to save on space inside the house. Winder stairs are also more pleasing to look at, so consider the aesthetics as well.

Planning your new staircase also involves getting the exact measurements for repairs or replacements. Measure the length of the handrail and base rail, count how many spindles you need, and review any other details you need to take note of before making any changes.

2. Working on the Skirt Board

Once you’re done setting up a plan, it’s time to dive into action. Begin by fitting and cutting the skirt board. It should be long enough to reach from top to bottom of the staircase and wide enough to cover the height of the riser and width of the tread. You can use quality boards like an A-grade clear lumber stock to give your new staircase a more sophisticated look. After all, some say that the staircase is a showpiece fixture, so it wouldn’t hurt to make an effort to improve how it looks.

Once you have the skirt board ready, position it against the edge of the staircase. Hold it in place temporarily so you can make marks vertically on where each of the risers meets the board. Do the same for each of the tread tops by marking horizontally on the points where they meet the skirt board.

Remove the skirt board from the edge of the staircase so you can start readjusting the marks. Move the horizontal marks for each tread down by one inch so that the skirt will fit right under the treads after installing it. Then, cut the riser and tread lines at a 90-degree angle with a circular saw. You can start cutting with a power saw because you’ll need its force to penetrate, then switch to a hand saw or jigsaw as you finish cutting for better control of the details.

3. Installing the Skirt Board

Before installing the board, go for a test fit first. Lay the board against the side of the staircase to check if it fits well. The board should fit right below the treads, while the riser cuts smoothly go into the original risers. The risers should line up to make sure all gaps are covered well.

Once you’ve verified that it fits, start using wood glue and finishing nails to fasten the board to the staircase. Next, fasten the treads in place by applying construction adhesive to the stair stringers and then setting the treads in their fitted marks. A nail gun would be ideal in fastening the treads, but make sure to pre-drill holes for the nails if the treads are made of hardwood.

4. Adding the New Handrail, Balusters, and Newel Post

You’re almost done! Once the treads are fastened, it’s time to attach the lower end of the new handrail to the post. Lock balusters into their rightful places (you should see notched grooves marking these), and set all the spindles into the appropriate treads and into the handrail. Finally, secure the top end of the handrail to the upper newel post. 

The structural elements of your new staircase are now in place. It’s up to you if you want to add finishing touches in the form of paint, lighting, or other decorations. Let your creativity shine and look for new artistic ways to let your new staircase stand out.

Wooden stairs

A Final Word on DIY Renovations

DIY renovations are not for everyone. Some people don’t have the time nor the skills to successfully complete a renovation project, and that’s okay.

For all your renovation and repair needs, iStairs Inc. can assist you by providing quality service at the most competitive prices. Give our team a call today and ask about our staircase renovation and repair services.

Source: Renovate Me

Different Types of Stairs, Their Pros, and Cons

Stairs are an integral part of up-and-down households, buildings, and other business establishments with two floors or more. In a previous article, we talked about stairway design ideas and how to jazz up your stairs to add oomph, flavor, and personality to them — and ramp up the stairway experience (pun intended). 

This time, let’s focus on the underlying structure underneath the design we see. Let’s go through the different types of stairs you can choose from when designing your space, their advantages, and their disadvantages. 

Straight staircase 

A straight staircase is probably the most basic, common, and simple of all types of staircases. Its parts are usually available pre-cut or pre-fabricated in home stores, making it more affordable than other kinds of stairs in terms of the construction process. 

Advantages: 

  • Doesn’t need any support other than the attachments at the top and bottom 
  • Railings and handrails are easier and faster to install 
  • Easier to dress up because it is one straight line 
  • For the user, it is easier to use when going up and down 
  • Blends in easily with minimalist or simplistic interior design 

Disadvantages: 

  • For the detail-oriented with design and space, they take up more linear space 
  • They do not offer privacy 
  • Dangerous in terms of falling down because one misstep could lead to a long fall 
  • One flight can only accommodate 16 steps. More would require a central landing which will then take up more space.

 L-shaped staircase 

An L-shaped staircase is a flight of stairs with a turn, either in the middle or near the bottom towards the landing or floor. This is also a common design because it takes up less space and is easier to decorate. It is also called the “dog-legged” or “quarter turn” staircase.  

In some cases (and where there is more space), L-shaped stairs are divided into three flights and, therefore, have two turns. This is referred to as the “threefold” stair design. 

Advantages: 

  • The landing can be decorated and even be used as a functional space 
  • Takes up less space and can be placed in corners 
  • There’s a break in climbing up and going down (easier to use) 
  • They serve as a barrier between floors and offer more privacy 
  • They work with acoustics within four walls and help in sound transmission 

Disadvantages: 

  • They are more complex to build and are, therefore, more expensive 
  • They require more materials for turn and landing support 
  • Handrails are more complex to design and construct 

U-shaped staircase 

A U-shaped staircase is a staircase where you do a 180-degree-turn when you climb it at the landing, also called a switchback. Because of this, this stair design is also known as the “switchback” or “half-turn” stairs. 

Advantages: 

  • More visually appealing than a straight staircase 
  • Wider landing which you can have fun with decorating 
  • Can also be installed in corners and are, therefore, space savers 
  • The landing provides extra space and can become a useful nook 

Disadvantages: 

  • They are more difficult to build 
  • The turn may make it difficult to move furniture up and down the stairs 

Winder staircase 

Winder stairs are sort of like L-shaped stairs but — instead of a landing at the turn — there are triangular or pie-shaped steps to keep the flight continuous at the turn. There are no stops. This stair design is making a comeback along with the rising popularity of tiny homes. 

Advantages: 

  • They require less space than the L-shaped stairs and other stair styles 
  • They are visually attractive in that they showcase a “seamless” transition between floors 

Disadvantages: 

  • They are trickier to navigate especially for the accident-prone 
  • They are harder to design and construct handrails for 
  • The turn steps require support like the usual landing and will cost more 

Spiral staircase 

Did we just make you sing, “I love you more today that yesterday!”? Fun, isn’t it? The spiral staircase (namesake of the popular 1960’s pop band) is considered a novelty design that is nice to look at, perfect for small spaces, but can be quite hard to navigate. 

(Let’s put it this way: They are nice to look at but not as nice to go up or down on.) 

Advantages: 

  • It is perfect for lofts (one of those stair designs that fall under “corner stairs”) 
  • It is fun to design and nice to photograph and look at as a design feature 
  • The steps go around a central pole. Hence, this design does not require much in terms of support. 
  • It is easier to construct 

Disadvantages: 

  • Only one person at a time can go up and down 
  • Not for the accident-prone since the inner part of the steps are narrow (the solution is to make the steps wider or to increase the diameter) 
  • Hard to move furniture up and down if it is the only way up and through 

Corner staircase 

Corner stairs are commonly seen outdoors or in decks when a home or building owner wants to maximize the space leading to the entrance or deck and build a “wraparound” staircase with three sides.  

Advantages: 

  • Adds to the access points of the building or home for three-sided stairs 
  • Contributes to the uniqueness of the design in cases where steps leading up a home or establishment are built at the corner instead of the usual middle part of a facade 
  • Can require only one bannister in the middle that can be used for both sides or for each corner 

Disadvantages: 

  • May feel strange to navigate for those not used to this type of stair design 
  • Not for the accident-prone as the sharp corners may cause real damage 

Split staircase 

Nothing can give a home a grander feel than the split staircase, also known as “bifurcated” stairs. It is probably the most common stair design in movies or television series where a character is portrayed as being very rich (think “The Sound of Music” and the Von Trapp home). 

The split staircase can be designed two ways: first, with steps leading to a landing where you find steps to your left or right; second, with two sets of stairs leading up to a landing that leads to one flight of stairs going up. Very fitting for the foyer at the main entrance of a home. 

Advantages: 

  • Makes a grand statement for your home (it is not called the “grand dame of stairs” for nothing) 
  • It can serve as a point of interest in your home, depending on its design 
  • The lines add to the depth of your space and give the illusion of an even bigger space 

Disadvantages: 

  • Large means expensive, with all the support its construction requires 
  • May require a lot of space which not all can afford nowadays 

There you have it: the most common types of stairs and their advantages over the other as well as their disadvantages. Your stair design of choice is completely up to you and however, you wish to maximize your space (and decorate it, for that matter). 

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iStairs, Inc. is a residential and commercial stair contractor specializing in production homes, single homes, and remodelling.

View our Contact Us page for hours and directions. We look forward to helping you build the custom staircase of your dreams!

If you can’t move, then it’s time to improve!

Have you been thinking about moving to a new home because your current house is in need of a few updates or improvements, but putting your house on the market right now doesn’t sound very appealing? Well, there’s no need to move just yet if you can make improvements to your home and increase its overall value so that when you are finally ready to sell, you can thank yourself all over again for the improvements you decided to make today!

But why make the same old, run-of-the mill home improvements that everyone else makes when you can update a feature of your home that is already a central part of your home’s design? Why not improve upon the appearance of your staircase as a way of updating your house this summer! Below we have compiled a short and simple list of ideas that you can use to improve the interior design of your home by way of your staircase.

While a complete staircase replacement is always an option with professional companies like iStairs, here are some elements of your staircase that you should consider updating when looking to improve your home this summer:

  • Paint or stain your staircase: Never underestimate how much of an impact a fresh coat of paint or wood stain can have on a staircase, but remember that you must consider the characteristics of your staircase when choosing which finish type is best. For example, aluminum and stainless steel staircases can be finished with powder coat finishes or even be amplified with a unique glass bead blasted look. And while there are a number of choices to pick from when staining your wooden staircases, some of the common options are oil, epoxy, stains, and polyurethane finishes, the last of which is used to seal the stairs from damage.
  • Update the balustrade: The balustrade is the vertical posts which support the railing of a staircase, and the balusters are the individual posts themselves which can be designed/shaped in a variety of different styles. Whether the balustrade is made of metal or wood, replacing old balusters or outdated spindles with more modernly styled balusters can instantly refresh the look and feel of your staircase as a whole.
  • Remove carpet for more natural appeal: If for example you have a traditional, old wooden style banister with carpeted stairs, one way of improving your staircase would be, in addition to painting and staining the stair railing more of a modern color, to remove the outdated carpet and even paint or stain the underlying treads as well. For safety purposes, if you have elderly people or children in your home who use the stairs, it’s always a good idea to consider installing some type of rubber non-slip grips on the edges of the tread. Another idea is to find a stylish runner to have along the middle of the stairs right on top of the treads, instead of carpet as well. Moreover, a runner actually serves multiple purposes, including safety and style enhancement and noise reduction

If however you are partial to the idea of carpet on your stairs, you can at least consider sprucing up your staircase with a newer, more modern type of carpet on your stairs.

So there’s no need to worry about putting your house on the market when you can start to make valuable and attractive improvements to your home today! And why not give your staircase a second chance with some much needed improvements this summer?

Planning Floor Height for Consistent Stair Rise

When installing a new staircase planning is everything. You must plan materials, measurements, timing, location; everything is important. Chances are you have already thought of and planned for the big things, but sometimes minor details can slip under the radar and turn out to be big hassles at the end of a project. One of these important, but minor details is planning the floor height and taking it into account when calculating the riser height.

The floor height at the bottom and top of a staircase might be as small as ⅜ inch up to around ¾ inch or so, but these fractional measurements can really throw you off. If a riser height does not allow for the ¾ inch floor height, it could end up sticking out and creating a tripping hazard. In addition, if stairs are not evenly flesh with the floor, they will often not be approved during inspection and you will have a whole new problem on your hands.

A less daunting reason, but still important to consider, is that human nature expects an even rise on each stair and believe it or not, ¾ inch difference will often be noticed. If you’ve ever expected a stair to be slightly higher than it is and gotten a falling sensation, then you know what I am talking about. The opposite also occurs that you expect a rise to be lower than it is and you end up pounding your foot down on the stair. To avoid these situations, be extra careful to consider all factors in riser height.

How a custom staircase can makeover your home

Staircases are one of the most versatile pieces of your home’s structure. In some spaces, they are the showcases of a grand entrance hall. In others, they are simply a required element in the home that blends into the rest of the house.

No matter how you incorporate your staircase’s design, you want it to enhance your home. There are a few things to think about when it comes to custom staircases.

Space: When you decide to build a custom staircase, you first have to look at the space that is available to you. If you have a small area, a spiral staircase might be your best bet. If you have a large front entry you have a lot more space to be able to put wide stairs with a number of different types of railings for effect. Having a spiral staircase in the corner of a small room can add texture where a blank corner would have just looked drab and empty.

Access: After determining the space allowance for your stairs, you need to look at the access to your stairs. In smaller access areas, you aren’t going to want huge banisters that make it difficult to maneuver around. You will need to go with something sleek and more minimalistic to fit in the area allowed. Again if you have a small access area, going with no railing might be an option to open up the access area. There are lots of different ways to design around your access point. Adding flair and paying attention to detail in your access points can really make your staircase a true focal point. Especially if you have a large access point, having a large staircase with an impressive banister can open the area up and really draw your eyes to your staircase.

Material and Design: When deciding what type of material and design you want for your stairs, it is wise to look around and figure out what the design of the rest of your house is and fit your custom staircase into that design scheme. If you have a country style house, you aren’t going to want an intricate metal railing. You would want to go more with a wooden type banister to fit in with the rest of the wood in your house. If your house is more modern there is a large variety of new designs and colors available to truly customize your stairs to your surroundings and your personality. This is where you can truly make the area of your house with your staircase a showstopper. There are so many different materials available these days, and the designs are endless when customizing.

Economic: Staircases can range from the low end of cost with DIY pre-fabricated kits, to very high-end expensive hand crafted. Being aware of your budget and what you are able to afford will help determine what material and design you will use for your custom staircase. If you choose the DIY route, be aware that if anything breaks it is up to you to fix it. Most staircase companies offer some type of warranty. This can be very helpful in the future if something breaks or is not how it was intended to be.

Versatility: Staircases can be used for more that just walking from one floor of a house to another. Staircases can be transformed into bookshelves, or moveable walls that lead to hidden rooms. You can cut a hole in your floor and add a spiral staircase tucked away in the corner that leads down to a wine cellar, or basement when there is limited space available for a larger staircase.

There are many different design options available when customizing your staircase that allow you to create a beautiful stair that you would be proud to show off.