How to remodel your staircase on a budget

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How to remodel your staircase on a budget

In many homes the stairs are one of the first things you see. They are often uninspiring as they sit in the same position and have the same look day after day.  Our stairs are the first thing you see when you enter our home and I’m not that keen on them.  I’d like a new banister and ideally to take off the carpet and paint the wooden stairs underneath white.  We do have white walls so it would be a very white entrance, but one I hope is bright, light, clean and welcoming.  We just worry about the children slipping down if the stairs have no carpet, so we may need to wait until they are a little older.

Stairs are usually very boring and just serve a purpose.  But, this doesn’t have to be the case. It is possible to completely rip out and replace your stairs or simply remodel them. The best part is that this can be done on a budget.

Here are some tips on how to remodel your staircase on a budget:

white wooden staircase


Consider the design

Start by taking a look at these stair design ideas. You can find a new design of staircase that will completely change the look and feel of your home.  There are so many places to find inspiration from.  I’ve seen white staircases on Instagram and Pinterest, for example, which have fueled my desire for beautiful white painted steps.

You may need to consider rebuilding the whole staircase depending on your design idea and what you already have there to work with.   A new staircase can be fitted by yourself although you may prefer to get professional help. While this is definitely the most expensive of the options available it is not as expensive as you may think.

Remove the carpet

A simpler idea that many people opt for is to remove the carpet. Constant wear and tear can quickly make any carpet on your stairs look tired. By removing it your stairs will feel opened up.

However, it will be louder when people walk up and down them? For this reason you may wish to consider tiling the stairs or adding a stair runner.

I’d love to go for plain white painted steps and with a no shoe policy upstairs in our home, I hope they won’t be too noisy, but perhaps too slippy?  A runner down the middle is probably the best way to combat this.

Remove the risers

You’ll need to verify that you can remove the risers without affecting the structure of your stairs. Don’t take them out if you are unsure!  However, if this is possible it can be a great way of opening up the stairs and the space behind them.  Only do this if you have open space under your stairs.  If you have a cupboard then this is not a good option or you’ll see all your storage!

Remove the cupboard

You can actually remodel your stairs by changing the space round them. This means removing the cupboard under the stairs and perhaps changing the flooring at the base of the stairs. If you also consider painting the walls a pale colour, or even white, you’ll make the space round the stairs feel much more open.   This will make your stairs feel larger.


Light is important in any home and the lighter your stairs are the more appealing this space will feel.  If you have any windows that can shed light onto the stairs then make sure the drapes are pulled right back.

In addition fit mirrors to the walls to bounce the light round the stairs and surrounding areas.

You should also consider a hanging light that will bounce light down the stairs; the light could even be suspended half way down the stairs. This would be a great addition to our staircase as we have a double height ceiling over our staircase, so a suspended light would make a great feature.

The balustrades

It’s easy to overlook the balustrades but this is a great way of transforming your stairs without ripping them out. In fact the balustrade is surprisingly easy to remove and replace.

Step away from the traditional with a metal balustrade or even choose a glass balustrade that will look like it’s not there. Alternatively you can mix materials; such as metal and glass or wood and plastic. 

Ours currently has some 70s style horizontal strips of wood which I really don’t like, though my husband does.  I’d rather something vertical and wooden and of course, painted white!


The key to remodeling your stairs on a budget is to look at what others have done with their stairs and accept that there is no limit to the possibilities.  Ripping off an old carpet, sanding back and repainting may take some time and effort, but it doesn’t need to be costly.  There are features of the stairs that can be updated without having to replace the whole staircase to give the impression of a new staircase.


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