I think he might be after figuring out what the elevation change is on the property. Could be wrong, but that's how I'm reading it.
If this is the case, there are a couple things you can try -
First, see if you can get a topo map from the municipality.
Absent that, if the rise isn't too large, you can estimate it within a few inches by using a tape measure and a handheld sight level. Place the tape measure at the lowest point where the steps will be and extend the tape vertically (this is hard if it's more than a few feet). Use the sight level to identify where the top of the slope is and where that falls on the tape.
Here's a link to a pic of the one I use: Question
Now this is no substitute for laser levels and direct-read rods, but it's a quick-n-dirty way to get pretty close.