What To Do About Unsafe Stairs?

What To Do About Unsafe Stairs?

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Tess Wilson
Jun 24, 2015

Q: We live in an older house with beautiful hardwood throughout. The stair wood is especially lovely, but the stairs are narrow and sloped after years of foot traffic. We have had multiple friends and family members fall down these stairs over the years, including the both of us. I'm now pregnant and increasingly nervous about falling down the stairs in the next few months or later while holding a baby. We don't want to fully carpet them, and we have cats that provide a decent amount of fur to float around so we need to be able to still easily clean the stairs. How do we make them safer, still easy to clean, and not render them ugly? -Sent by Jean

Editor: This is the first Good Question that has terrified me, and I'm hoping you all will swoop in and save Jean, her partner, her baby-to-be, her cats, her family, her friends, and all of her future guests. Have any of you had luck making your stairs safer and sturdier? Have any of you had to finally give up and have all new stairs constructed? Is there any sort of lighting/handrail/tread combination that you think might eliminate falls? Please help!

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