How Tall of a Ladder Do I Need for a 2 Story House?

If you are familiar with ladders, you will agree with me that they come in a variety of sizes. In other words, ladder sizes will vary between two and forty feet, and that’s why it’s becoming challenging for everyone to choose the right ladder size for their multi-story building. 

But did you know that having the right size of the ladder makes your work easier and gives you flexibility while working on your projects? Sure, getting the right size of the ladder will provide you with the comfort and flexibility you need. So, it’s better to choose a ladder wisely for your activities. 

A ton of people have asked the same question when purchasing a ladder: how tall ladder do I need?

The good news is that choosing a ladder for a one-story house isn’t a hassle. You can measure your height and that of the ceiling and choose the right ladder accordingly.  

The bad news, though, is that it can be downright frustrating to choose the right ladder size for a two-story house. And that’s why you need to ask yourself, how tall ladder do I need before you purchase a ladder because this question will help you consider so many things. 

How Tall of a Ladder Do I Need for a 2 Story House_

In this post, I’m going to step up and answer one of the million-dollar questions – how tall ladder do I need?

Let’s dive in. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

1. What does a 2 story building mean?

First, it is essential to note that a two-story house is a building that has two floors. And if staircases are built within these two floors, then this building will be called a duplex house. The advantage of this is that your family can stay on one level and rent the other. 

2. What is the Height of a House? 

This is the distance between the ground and the roof, but the basement is not included. 

3. How tall is a 2 story house in feet?

Assuming that your story is eight feet tall, then a two-story house is sixteen feet high. The same applies when calculating at ten feet tall that accounts for an eight-foot ceiling and two-foot for the roof. In other words, a 2-story house is twenty feet. 

4. How tall is the peak of a 2 story house?

Usually, the average height of a 2-story house is twenty-five feet (and that’s from the ground) to your roof. In a nutshell, several two-story homes fall between twenty and twenty-five feet

Each Story Height in a Multi-story House

A story is any building that has a floor. The height of each story relates to the distance between one level and another. This distance is calculated from the floor, which includes the thickness of the roof. 

But you should know that the heights of stories may vary. And this is because there are always variations with the ceiling. Additionally, the roof of a house will differ in the overall heights. It is also important to note that all rooftops are usually flat. 

Usually, the levels will include both the loft and the attic, which differ in height. And because of this difference in the loft and attic height, your house may look shorter or taller when you try to compare it with the rest around your area.  

In most residential places, the thickness of the floor structure will always be one foot, which means that a nine-inch ceiling will be about ten feet

height of the first story

In a nutshell, multi-story residential homes usually have a standard height that’s ten feet. Additionally, it is essential to note that the floor-to-floor height is often eight feet. 

Two-Story House Height

You need to know the exact height of a two-story house to determine the right ladder size for your two-story building. 

What you have never known is that the height of 2-story houses differs because of the difference in ceiling heights. Usually, every story is allocated a height for the actual ceiling space, floor, as well as other infrastructure. 

height of 2 story house

If we base our argument on this calculation, then the height of a two-story house will about twenty feet. But while this may be the standard height, don’t be surprised if you come across a 2-story house with up to twenty-five feet.

And like I mentioned above, the average height is calculated between eight and ten feet allocated for every floor. That means that a ten feet house will account for an eight feet ceiling and a ceiling of two feet. 

Determining The Right Ladder Size

How tall ladder do I need? This is one of the million-dollar questions that has been asked on the internet a couple of times. And the ladder size will depend on the height of the house you are going to perform the task, as well as the task you intend to do. 

Also, you need to keep in mind that choosing the right ladder size will be important as it will guarantee your safety while working on your roof. And the good news is that you will not need a ladder calculator to calculate the ladder size you want. 

All you have to do is to drop a tape measure from your two-story house window. Also, you are free to take measurements of your ceiling and floor and top up the measurement by 1.6 to 3.2 feet (0.5m-1m) to cater to your ladder pitch and the ceiling depth. 

However, we recommend that you accurately measure the height of your house to ensure that the most suitable ladder is purchased. Most importantly, choosing the right ladder for your two-story house is essential to avoid severe ladder injuries. 

How To Take Measurements of Two-Storey Ladder 

This is quite straightforward, and you will agree with me. Pythagoras theorem will help us in this section a lot. And there’s no need to worry because you don’t need to learn this theory. So let’s get started. 

Pythagoras theorem


  • a equals the height of your wall. 
  • b equals the distance between the base and the feet of your ladder. 
  • c equals the ladder’s pitch 
  • c² = a² + b².

And please remember to use the right angle rule when setting up your ladder. 

If your pitch is way too long, you may stand the risk of slipping and falling, resulting in severe injuries. On the other hand, if your pitch is way too short, your ladder may tip over, or you may not reach the required height to do your job. 


Now, if your two-story house is twenty feet in height, then you need to make sure that your ladder is at five feet away from your house base in regards to the 4:1 ratio

And if we go by the ladder angle rule, then your ladder needs to be at an angle of seventy-five degrees away from your wall. This angle rule is also known as the 4:1 ratio. 

How Tall Ladder Do I Need for a Two-Story House?

If you have an extension ladder, you won’t need to match the length of your ladder with the maximum height you want to reach to perform your task. If you intend to carry out roofing jobs, you will go an extra length that will go past your gutters. 

In most cases, the height of a two-story building is twenty-five feet from the base. That said, you should look for extension ladders instead of platform or step ladders, unless you want to break your neck and back.

Now, let’s try one more formula to see if it works. Ready?

Step1: Calculate the length of pitch

c ≈ 25.8 feet
  • Take measurements of your roofline height and let’s assume it is 25 feet. 
  • According to the 4: 1 ratio, the distance between the base and the feet of your ladder is 6.25 (25/4) feet.
  • Now we set the pitch of the ladder to c, then c² = 25²+6.25².
  • Finally, through calculation, we get c ≈ 25.8 feet.

Step2: Choose the right ladder

We have obtained the pitch value by the calculation above. Now, you need to increase or decrease this value according to your work:

If you intend to reach the roof or go on the roof, please make sure the top of your ladder extends at least 3 feet (1m) beyond the roofline for safety.

However, if you don’t intend to reach the roof, then you will need a shorter one.

use ladders of different lengths

In general, we may frequently use ladders of different lengths. Such as strengthening the roof, cleaning the gutter, cleaning the second-floor windows, etc. So, I suggest you buy an extension ladder, which can match your work well, all in one.

While you have the right and freedom to choose the right ladder for your two-story house, the Louisville FE3228 that is twenty-eight feet and with a duty rating of three-hundred pounds will be of significant help. 

And the good news is that the Louisville ladder will still play a significant role when you are looking forward to accomplishing bigger jobs. 

Bottom Line

We have answered the question: how tall ladder do I need for a two-story house? By now, you should be able to choose the right ladder size for your two-story building. 

Also, you should be able to take the necessary precautions outlined in this guide. They will help you stay safe while working on your two-story building. 

Sure, the question of how tall ladder do I need shouldn’t cause you sleepless nights again. 

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