tiny house stairs

Consider Building a Tiny House Stairs Instead of Ladder

After being adjusted to the tiny house lifestyle equipped with a ladder – it becomes clear that a ladder may not be a perfect solution to access loft areas, particularly when it comes to homeowners with pets, children, or elderly parents/relatives.

tiny house stairs

That’s the main reason for building tiny house stairs instead of a ladder is becoming more and more popular over the years. So, keep reading this article as you will benefit from lots of useful information to construct one for you.

Using tiny house stairs is the most convenient way to climb loft areas. Though it takes more space as compare to a ladder, you can choose among five popular designs to the next level.

Following the staircase regulation, you should have a minimum width of 2’ to 3’ with 8’ ceiling height, depending on the size of your tiny house.

Moreover, don’t forget to allocate 8’ to 9’ horizontal space towards building comfortable yet right proportion stairs.

How to Build a Perfect Tiny House Stairs?

People living in tiny houses are more space-conscious than people living in traditional spacious residences. So, building perfect yet minimalistic tiny house stairs is all they need to get the most out of the space.

How Do Build Stairs in a Small Space?

The easiest yet ideal approach towards building tiny house stairs in a small space is a series of boxes that are stacked together. It’s the simplest yet compact way of building a stair in your tiny home. In this way, you can get extra storage space beneath the stairs that solve your storage issues.

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How Do You Calculate Rise and Run for the Stairs?

Calculating rise and run for your tiny house stairs is crucial because it’ll help to design perfect yet comfortable stairs for people.

To calculate Run (Horizontal Length):

Number of Tread x Typical Depth of Tread

To calculate Rise (Vertical Length):

Number of Riser x Typical Height of Riser

How to Calculate Riser and Tread

The process of finding the perfect height of riser and length of the tread is based on the trial and error method. The below formula suits best for people who’ve fixed run.

To calculate riser height

Riser Height = Floor to Loft height / (number of steps + 1)

To calculate tread length

Tread Length = Length of Stairs / Number of Steps

Initially, you don’t know the exact number of steps or risers, so the trial and error method will be the best way to design a stair according to the available space.

What are the Tiny House Stairs Building Regulation?

Just like every other thing in your tiny house, your stairs also have to be up to residential state code regulation. Below are some requirements that need to follow while building stairs in your tiny home.


According to IRC (International Residential Code), the tread’s minimum width should be 17” above or 20” below of handrail.


It’s the space above your head for easy movement beneath the stairs. So, following the regulation, you should maintain a headroom of 6’ and 2”. You can keep the headroom as close as possible without violating the regulation to make the most out of your space.

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Riser Height

According to the code, the riser height should be less than 12” but above 7”.


Installing handrails on your tiny house stairs makes it safer, also making your stairs up to the code. Moreover, the tiny house handrails guidelines are similar to traditional homes.

Multiple Designs for Tiny House Stairs

Usually, tine house owners condemn the idea of stairs due to the wastage of space. In actuality, building stairs instead of ladders won’t be a huge compromise due to below mention designs:

Retractable Staircase

tiny house stairs

The retractable staircases are fully customizable based on your available space and can easily be hidden away when not in use.

Storage Staircase


Storage space is primarily the most important feature for people living in tiny houses, and building stairs with storage is no less than a dream for space-conscious people.

The storage staircase provides ample space and a great opportunity for difficult to utilize spaces in the house. Hence, well-designed stairs with built-in storage may even double the amount of available storage in your house.

Pull-out Staircase

tiny house stairs

If you want to keep your house as minimalistic as possible? Then pull-out stairs will be the perfect solution. It’s a kind of flexible arrangement where the tiny house stairs disappear into the wall, leaving sufficient space for movement and storage.

Simply pull-out the stairs when you need to access or fold the stairs away when not in use. Moreover, you can also add railing in it, if you’ve children or elder people living with you.

Open Staircase

tiny house stairs

If you have a spacious house, then a traditional tiny house or extra storage is not a problem, then you can opt for an open staircase design, making it feel less bulky.

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The open stairs design lies in-between a stair and a ladder, allowing unhindered access to the loft and effectively opens up the rest of the living space.

Makeshift Staircase


The technique of ingeniously designed staircase by assembling heavy-duty pieces of furniture that would serve as steps is known as a makeshift staircase.

In general, it doesn’t look like a stair at all and also doesn’t occupy too much space in your tiny house.

Well, this idea might be useful for younger people living in a house because of inconsistent riser’s height.


Have you seen it? Storage isn’t a problem even with tiny house stairs – Deciding between stairs and ladder might be a tough call, but it really comes down to what you need.

If mobility is not an issue for people living in the tiny house, you can go with ladders, but if it’s the issue, then look no further than stairs. Consider building a perfect stair and make your life easier with it.

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