How to: Make sure you’re following staircase regulations

Regulations of a Staircase

When designing and installing a structural element in your home, it’s vital you follow safety and building regulations to avoid expensive alterations having to be made. 

Consulting a qualified building inspector is the best option if you have any doubts as to whether your plans are in line with the regulations that have been put in place. 

Today we’ll be taking you through the guidelines regarding domestic staircases and how you should construct your staircase in order to follow them. 



For steps in domestic staircases, nosing overlap must be a minimum of 16mm. The going dimension must be calculated from nosing to nosing for a level and safe outcome. 

All steps in the staircase must have the same rise. The only exception for a difference in height is when a flat landing breaks up the staircase. 


Advised measurements in a staircase 

To ensure every domestic staircase is safe to use, there are maximum and minimum measurements that you must abide by when assembling your own staircase. 

  • The maximum rise is 220mm, with no advised minimum. 
  • The minimum going is 220mm, with no advised maximum. 

When no advised measurements are provided, the building regulations do specify that the rise multiplied by two, plus the going should total 550mm-700mm (rise x 2 + going = 550mm-700mm). 

  • The maximum pitch (rise divided by the run) of domestic stairs is 42°. 

Staircase regulations don’t currently state a minimum width of a domestic staircase, but the majority of staircase companies (including us) recommend a minimum of 860mm for easy access. 

In terms of the length of a staircase, the only restriction is that you should change the direction of the staircase by at least 30° if there are more than 36 risers.


Landing regulations

  • There must be a landing at the top and bottom of a flight of stairs, which must be longer than the width of the staircase
  • Doors should not swing any closer than 400mm near a step
  • All landings should be level
  • The ground floor landing cannot have a gradient exceeding 1:20/2.86°/5%.


Handrail regulations

If a staircase is less than 1m wide, it only requires a handrail on one side. If wider, there must be a handrail on both sides.

There must be a 900mm-1000mm distance between the pitch line and handrail. 

If spindles are being used, a 100mm sphere must not be able to pass through the gap in between, to prevent small children from getting their heads stuck. 


Headroom requirements 

For domestic staircases in the UK, there must be at least 2m worth of headroom between the pitch line and ceiling. 

In loft conversions, the minimum headroom height is 1.8m.


Contact Wonkee Donkee today for more information 

The team here at Wonkee Donkee don’t just produce and supply high-quality staircase parts, they’re also on hand to give customers support and advice regarding the construction of their stairs. 

If you have any further questions surrounding staircase regulations, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today. 

To speak to us directly, you can call us between 9am and 5pm during the week on 01938 557733. If you prefer, you can send over your questions to and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.