If your floor plan calls for multiple levels, stairs are a must. But necessities don’t have to be necessary evils. As most staircases are built on site, they present a perfect opportunity to turn a functional element into an artistic installment. The staircases featured here not only get their homeowners up and down, but also go the extra mile to improve views, accommodate the elderly, or create usable space, all while enhancing the home’s design. So put a little spring in your step. Your buyers will thank you.

Editor's Note: Please be aware that some of the staircases featured here are not up to code. The International Residential Code requires a handrail along a staircase's wall side and a guardrail and handrail along the open side. However, some architects and builders choose to photograph their projects with the aesthetic they prefer, and then later add the necessary elements to meet code. We hope that you will be able to garner design ideas from these projects while making adaptations to meet your local code requirements.