Install attic stairs
Fakro Attic Stairs. (Fakro Attic Stairs / January 6, 2014)
The unit is a complete framed assembly with a folding, sectional ladder designed to be installed in a ceiling opening. That's the rub: you have to cut a rather large hole in the ceiling -- not a job to be taken lightly. The unit is bolted into the rough opening, then trimmed with molding and painted for a finished look on the ceiling. Stair units are sold at home centers and lumberyards in a range of ceiling heights from 8 to 10 feet.
While you'll save a whopping 66 percent by doing the job yourself, we suggest you hire a carpenter or contractor, who will charge $647 to install a good quality, three-section, 25-inch-wide unit for an 8- to 9-foot ceiling. That includes the labor and material. The job involves cutting through ceiling joists and reinforcing them with headers without destroying the integrity and strength of the joists -- clearly a job for an experienced professional.
Consider your options for placing the stair with a carpenter who will inspect the ceiling joists and suggest the best location for the foldaway unit. Ideally, it should unfold into a room or hallway and be easily accessible. Schedule the inspection with the carpenter during the day so you'll have light in the attic. Have a ladder, flashlight and measuring tape handy.
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Pro Cost -- DIY Cost -- Pro time -- DIY Time -- DIY Savings -- Percent Saved
$647 -- $220 -- 4.9 -- 11.0 -- $427 -- 66 Percent
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