How to Redo Basement Stairs on a Budget with Indoor Outdoor Stair Runners

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  • All the details to makeover stairs with cost efficient, easy to clean stair runners! Pretty and practical basement stair ideas.

    basement stairs on a budget - brilliant way to save money

    YES, I said it, budget. Ugh, I don’t like that word, but sometimes, you just have to make compromises, or what you would think would be a compromise.

    We’re currently updating our basement and since it’s a space that the kids will primarily use and rarely be seen by guests, we are trying to limit our spending. I’ve always known how I wanted to do the basement stairs, but there were a few naysayers, including Chris and Nick, our flooring guy. I didn’t let that stop me.

    how to update stairs on a budget that will also be durable and easy to clean

    Most treads and risers {the steps themselves and the board that connects them} are never intended to see the light of day. Builders use leftover materials, broken or ill fitted boards and as we learned the hard way {from our second level stairs}, even different species of wood. Still, I was determined.


    basement before

    I don’t have a before of the stairs {sometimes I get a little too anxious}, but this is just to the left of them and are the same cedar walls and worn carpet that surrounded the stairs. You can see the difference a little paint and a couple stair runners can make!

    save money redoing stairs with a stair runner

    Practical and Inexpensive Basement Stair Ideas:

    Redoing basement stairs isn’t difficult or time consuming!

    We want the basement to be a comfortable place where the girls and their friends can play and create without fear and burn off some energy on rainy days, so I was excited to fall in love with this stair runner that is so much more durable than carpeting because it’s a soft, indoor/outdoor rug! Whew!

    Bonus? The project cost less than $300 to do, which is less than we paid for those 4 stairs of basic hardware store carpet in our sunroom. Seriously.

    how to update stairs on a budget that will also be durable and easy to clean

    How to Install Stair Runners:

    We started by removing the old, dingy carpet and the ridiculous amount of staples that accumulated through the years as carpet had been replaced.

    I centered the runner to gage just how much area needed to have nails filled, caulked and painted. Why work any harder than you have to?

    Then our flooring guy installed the rug, but guess what? It’s so easy you can do it yourself. Honestly, I’m not sure why we didn’t. If you want to DIY this project, Rhoda of Southern Hospitality has a great step by step tutorial. It took our guys a half hour to do, but they didn’t staple under each individual stair, just at the base of each stair.

    how to update stairs on a budget that will also be durable and easy to clean

    It took 3 2’6″ x 8 runners to cover our stairs, but I was also able to use the remnant as a kitchen rug in our lake cottage! I measured a tread and riser, added the number together and multiplied the number of stairs to determine how many we needed.

    basement stairs on a budget - brilliant way to save money

    Click here to see our basement playroom and flooring. Now I have to talk myself out of doing it at the lake cottage.

    The Best Stair Runners:

    I have rounded up all of my favorite Dash & Albert Indoor Outdoor stair runners {they’re the easiest to clean} and two marled runners that hide the dirt.

    dash and albert indoor outdoor stair runners to update stairs on a budget

    from left to right

    1 2 3

    4 5 6

    7 8 9

    and of course you know I love mine!

    how to update your basement stairs on a budget


    beautiful basement stairs on a budget



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    This post is in partnership with one of my favorite resources, Wayfair. As always, all opinions are own. Thanks for supporting the brands that make this site possible! I appreciate your support.

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