Here's how I see this conversation going.....
Homeowner: I need some new steps
Contractor: ok well based on the height and steps available you will need 3 steps
HO: How much is three steps?
C: They are $500 per step
HO; I can't afford that, can't you get away with 2 steps?
C: Sorry its 3 Steps
H: Fine I will do it on my own.....stupid contractor thinking I need 3 steps.