Pine is one of many kinds of wood that is ideal to make up the stair treads in your home. Using pine for this purpose has several benefits, making it common in many homes. White pine and red pine provide slightly different appearances, but both are readily available at wood stores and share the same benefits.
Some of the benefits of pine stair treads include the wood's cost, its availability and its appearance. Because pine stair treads are so common at flooring and home improvement stores, it's easy to shop around until you can find a price within your budget. Pine is typically on the lower end of the wood pricing spectrum, making it accessible for many people. The wood varies in appearance from plain to knotty, allowing you versatility in choosing the style for your home.
The lone drawback to pine stair treads is that because it's a softwood, it will damage easily. If you drop an object on the stairs they will dent, and if you have dogs in your home, their claws will likely scratch the stairs. This trait isn't always a drawback, however. If you want your home to have a shabby chic or rustic appearance, scuffed and dented pine works well.
Pine is a wood that accepts both stain and paint. Although most people choose to stain wooden stair treads, the low price of pine means you can paint the treads, if desired. More expensive stair tread wood, such as cherry, is not ideal to paint because you're paying for the appearance of the wood. If you want the pine treads to show their light color, stain them with a clear or light finish. The more coats of stain you apply, the darker the stairs will appear.
In addition to being useful as stair treads, pine also works well as the risers on the stairs and even as flooring around your home. The amount of pine you choose to use depends on the decor style you wish to achieve. In a cabin setting, using pine for the stairs and flooring provides a natural feel, but in an urban environment, consider covering your floor in a different material if your stair treads are pine.