How much does a stairlift cost?

By Chris Clayton

This is probably one of the main questions that you want to know when you're thinking of buying a stairlift. Most companies that sell stairlifts (and especially the manufacturers) won't give you a quote until they actually see your staircase and many won't even give you a range of possible prices.

This can be frustrating to hear, but there are both some good why they do this and also some ones which are more shady.

Every staircase is different

You may think that you have a normal staircase, but when fitting a stairlift there isn't really one. Every staircase is different. There may be obstructions at the bottom or the top of the stairs which makes fitting a stairlift more difficult to install or requires certain special modifications.

Until a company sends a representative out to assess the stairs, they won't really know what modifications the stairlift needs to have or what type of stairlift they can safely fit (a stairlift with a straight rail/track or one with a curved rail/track). As a result of this, they can't give you a quote over the phone or online.

Price range

But even though they can't give you a quote before seeing your staircase, they should be able to give you a range of prices. Unfortunately, for many companies (especially the manufacturers) it is against company policy to give potential customers a possible range of prices for installing a stairlift.

So let me give a range of prices you could be paying for the two main types of stairlift which are commonly installed:

  • For a new straight stairlift, you are looking at paying anything from £1,500 to £3,500 ($2,500 to $5,000).

  • For a new curved stairlift, you are looking at paying anything from £4,000 to £6,000 ($5,500 to $8,000) or more.

It is possible that if the stairlift is easy to fit, you could pay a little less from certain companies for a new stairlift than the prices I have given above.

You could also reduce the price you pay by choosing a reconditioned or a second hand stairlift instead a new one. Click here to read about the advantages and disadvantages of buying a new, reconditioned and second hand stairlift.

What's included in the price

Obviously, the stairlift (the carriage and the rail/track) and (in most cases) the installation is included in the price you pay. For a new stairlift, the price you will be charged will also include a one or two years parts and labour warranty from the manufacturer as standard. But it may not include service visits and the warranty may only cover the replacement of certain parts. And this is something which many people don't pay any attention to when buying a stairlift.

As a stairlift is a mechanical device and will be used very frequently, it needs to be regularly serviced (most manufacturers recommend every 6 months). The cost of getting a service done can be expensive (for a basic service you will normally be looking at paying around £150/$250). If service visits falls outside the warranty period and they have to replace parts, it can get extremely costly.

So make sure to ask to see the warranty agreement to see what's included and what's not, and if some service visits (and how many) are included in the price you pay or not.

To find out more about warranty agreements, read my guide to stairlift warranties.

Negotiating the price

If you have already looked at websites for companies who sell stairlifts, you may have noticed that some of them do give a starting price for fitting a stairlift. The prices for the few companies which do this are higher than the those that I have published here in the above ranges section. This is not because they are more expensive than other suppliers, but because buying a stairlift is like buying a car, the price you are quoted is not fixed, you can negotiate it down.

So no matter what you do, never accept the first price they quote you. You'll see that they'll soon reduce the amount of the quote or include an extended warranty or free service visits if they think you're going to walk away without buying from them.

To find out more on how to pay less for a stairlift, read my article on 'how to lower the price you pay for a stairlift'.

In conclusion

The more difficult and the more time it takes to install a stairlift, the higher the price will be. This is why a curved stairlift is a lot more expensive than a straight stairlift. Although most stairlifts come with a warranty, before you buy you should look at the warranty agreement to see what it covers. You should also ask about the cost of regular service visits before buying a stairlift and whether any of these are included the price they quote you. Because if you don't do either of these, you could be in for a nasty (and costly) surprise in the future.

And remember, never accept the first quote they offer you. The price and what is included is negotiable.