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We manage this condo in lake tahoe region, and as you may know, the area snows a lot during winter time. The exterior wooden stairs (circled in red) is about 30 years old, and we are thinking about doing some retrofitting, although it still works fine. Previous owner replaced some railings and steps as we can tell. I recently got a quote from a contractor to replace the whole stairs, and quote is at $53,000 staggering price. To reinforce or repair it, we could replace some railings, treads, steps, and reinforce the posts, and that would cost a few hundreds or $1000 - $2000. I'd like to bring this up to this forum to hear some experts' opinions.

  • 2
    You might want to have them check/inspected by professional, instead of just simple repair by yourself. 30 year old wood in very good condition does not really need replacing, wood in bad condition might be cheaper replacing the whole thing, instead of piece meal. Get more quotes if replacing.
    – crip659
    Commented May 21, 2021 at 0:18
  • The question you need to ask is "Are these stairs, as a whole, unsafe?" You need to look at the stairs as a whole system. If you were to ask about one board, one post, or a specific section with dry rot then we could better answer this. In short, as @crip659 suggested, you need the stair system, as a whole, inspected by a pro to determine if everything needs replaced, or just some updates here and there.
    – tnknepp
    Commented May 21, 2021 at 12:21

1 Answer 1


This seems like an impossible question to answer based off of this one picture. If you can't afford to replace it and it's not in dangerous condition, then I don't see why fixing the problem areas wouldn't be your best temporary solution.

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