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Building a Shouse in Illinois – The Complete Guide

If you are a craftsperson or own your own business where you need your own space, it can be frustrating trying to find the right setup. When you are working from a warehouse or a shared space with other craftspeople, the odds that this space will be close to your house are slim. This can cut into your precious time with your friends and family. Anyone who owns their own business knows how difficult it can be to strike a work/life balance. This is even more difficult if you are trying to commute to a workspace outside of your home. 

That’s why building a shouse in Illinois is such a good option for all kinds of people. By combining your working and living space, you can eliminate that commute time and have everything you need for your work and your life all in one place. This is the dream of most people who own their own business and may even be the reason you started your business in the first place. With the advent of all kinds of alternative living situations, there has never been a better time to start looking into building your own shouse in Illinois. Builders and lenders are more on board than ever and you are sure to be able to find the help you need. 

In this guide, we have put together everything you need to know to get started on your shouse in Illinois. By having this information at hand, you can set yourself up for success and get started on the right track. 

shouse in illinois exterior

What Is a Shouse and What Are Some of the Advantages?

A shouse is a combination of a shop and house that is built on one cement slab foundation. They are generally built out of metal post frame structures or pole barns and are usually much easier to build than traditional homes. This makes them a great option if you’ve looked into building a house with a separate shop before, but were put off by the price or the amount of time that it would take. There are many benefits to building and working in a shouse in Illinois and understanding them will help you decide if this is the right decision for you. 

One of the main benefits of building a shouse in Illinois is the fact that it is quite a bit faster and less expensive. A shouse in Illinois can usually be built in about half the time it would take to build a house with a detached shop. Because of this, you can save a lot of money on both labor and materials. 

The other main advantage of building a shouse in Illinois is their durability. Because they usually use an all-steel construction, you do not have to deal with things like termites, rot, or mold, which can be incredibly common with traditional homes. This is especially important in a place like Illinois where there is a wide range of weather conditions and homes are exposed to the elements. 

Cost of Building a Shouse in Illinois

When you decide to build a shouse in Illinois, one of the first things you will want to do is figure out what your budget needs to be. The best way to do this with a shouse is to find out what they cost per square foot. The benefit of this is that you can know what size concrete slab foundation you will need and this will then allow you to put together your floor plan. 

The cost of building a traditional home in Illinois is around $162 per square foot. It is important to understand that this number does not include things like furniture, utilities, or any of the things that make building your own house worth it and make the home livable. Those expenses will need to be added to your budget, which can add up quite a bit over the course of your build. 

The cost of building a shouse in Illinois is much less. At just $111 per square foot, you could save a lot of money in the long run and can afford some of the things you would want to include with a custom home and shop build. You could even potentially afford some new equipment which can help you expand your business. 

shouse in illinois exterior

Shouse Builders in Illinois

After you have decided on your budget, you will want to figure out who you should hire to build your shouse in Illinois. As a craftsperson, you will probably want to do some of the work yourself. However, it is incredibly important that you have someone on site who has experience building structures like this. They will be able to help you keep everything up to code and in compliance with all zoning laws. The construction business can be difficult to navigate and it can be hard to know how to pick someone. Luckily, there are some things you can look for in a builder that will help you choose. 

The first thing you should look for in a builder for your shouse in Illinois is expertise. Many builders will only have experience in building traditional stick frame homes. There are many builders who specialize in post frame buildings or pole barns. Choosing one of these builders will give you the best possible chance at success with your project. 

You should also look for a builder who has a good history with their previous clients. There are many places online where you can look at reviews for builders that are written by the people they have worked with previously. Look for builders who were not only able to deliver a good final product, but also a solid customer service experience to their clients. 

Blunier Builders

Blunier Builders prides themselves on having both experience and integrity. They have been building all kinds of metal structures in the Illinois area including shouses. This experience will be a great help when building your shouse in Illinois. 

Rural Renovators 

Rural Renovators is dedicated to maintaining their attention to detail on all the buildings they work on for their customers. If you want a builder who will be able to walk you through every step of your build, they could be a good choice. 

Walters Buildings 

Walters Buildings is a local contractor that has built award-winning buildings in the Illinois area. They will help you come up with a design for your shouse in Illinois that will be both convenient for your business and comfortable for your family. 

Shouse Kit Providers in Illinois 

If you aren’t interested in building a shouse in Illinois from scratch, you could go with a kit. Shouse kits come completely prefabricated and are built to be put together quickly and easily. Plus, the entire thing comes to your build site all at once so you don’t have to spend time sourcing materials. 

All shouse kit providers will include comprehensive support for their kits. Many of them even have recommendations for contractors who have worked on their kits before and can help you throughout the build process. 

Shouse Financing in Illinois 

Farmers State Bank

Farmers State Bank is the top agricultural bank in the area and they are dedicated to helping people like you build their shouse in Illinois. They have flexible terms and all kinds of loans so you can find a situation that works for you. 

Farm Credit Illinois 

Farm Credit Illinois is one of the largest agricultural banks in the state. They are interested in supporting all kinds of projects like yours and they will work with you to make sure you can get the financing you need. 

shouse in illinois exterior

Shouse Taxes in Illinois

You will need to pay taxes on your shouse in Illinois just like you would with a traditional home. However, oftentimes, shouses will fall under something called “dual use” construction. This means that you will pay a different tax rate for the parts of your shouse in Illinois that are for residential purposes and the parts that are for work. A local tax assessor can help you find out what you should be paying and how much. 

Where to Find Shouse Insurance in Illinois 

You can get insurance for your shouse in Illinois anywhere you can get traditional homeowner’s insurance. However, depending on your business, you should make sure that you have clauses that will cover you in the event of an accident or disaster related to it. For example, if you are a welder, you should make sure that fires are covered in your insurance policy. Speak to an insurance agent to be certain that your home and your business are covered. 

Shouse Floor Plans in Illinois

Coming up with a floor plan for your shouse in Illinois is incredibly important. It will dictate the flow and feel of the home and also determine how much space you have for your shop. To get your floor plan started, sit down and write out everything you would want for your shouse in Illinois. Then, take your list of ideas to a professional draftsman. They will be able to take your ideas and turn them into a complete, workable floor plan for your shouse in Illinois. You and your builder can then turn this plan into a reality.   


By reading this guide, you now have a good idea of what it takes to build a shouse in Illinois. By knowing what to expect, you can be prepared as you move through the steps of this project. Having this information will allow you to be on top of things as you move through the rewarding and challenging process of building a shouse in Illinois. 

If you would like even more tips and tricks, be sure to check out the rest of There, you will find all kinds of guides like this one and featured shouses. They can get you thinking about your own shouse in Illinois and provide you some much needed inspiration to build the shop house of your dreams.