Custom Shouse & Barndominium Builders in Wisconsin
Virtue Homes builds custom, luxury shop houses and barndominiums in the Fox Valley, WI region. Pole barn homes include an attached, large multi-use storage space such as a workshop or garage in the fundamental design. This type of home offers flexible floor plans, convenience, and innovative design technology.
Why Build a Shop House or Barndominium in WI?
A shouse or barndominium offers versatility for your Wisconsin home by combining your living quarters with additional space. Virtue Homes will customize your floor plan depending on how you’ll use the extra room. Common shouse and barndominium uses include:
- Workshop If you're a DIY enthusiast, a shouse can provide you with a dedicated space for woodworking, metalworking, car repair, or other types of projects.
- Home-based business If you run a small business that requires a workshop or industrial space, such as a cabinet-making or welding business, a shouse can provide you with a space to work and live.
- Storage The shop space in a shouse can also be used for storage for boats, RVs or other types of equipment. Perfect for Wisconsin lake living!
- Gym Have the home gym of your dreams or start a business.
- Additional living space Build an epic game room, home theater or guest room.
- Rental space Some people use the shop space as a rental space, such as for a car or equipment rental business or a storage rental business.
- Agricultural Storage If you’re a farmer, you’ll know the benefits of additional insulated space.
What is the different between a Shouse, Barndominium, & Normal House?
While barndominiums were originally barns converted into homes, shouses are often standard single-family homes with an attached workshop.
|Size||Design||Avg. Cost Per Sq. Ft.||Purpose|
|Regular Home||1,200 - 3,500 sq ft||Follows traditional home design.||$175-$250*||Used as a residence.|
|Shouse||1,500 - 4,500 sq ft||Combines traditional home design with elements of a shop or industrial building||$150-$225||Used as a residence, shop, industrial space, storage or small business operations.|
|Barndominium||2,000 - 5,000 sq ft||Combines traditional home design with elements of a barn or agricultural building.||$150-$225||Used as a residence, shop, barn, agricultural storage, storage or for small business operations.|
Building a Shouse or Barndominium
Building a shouse or barndominium can be a complex process. In this guide, you'll find info on how to navigate the costs and financing options, Wisconsin taxes on shouses, and insurance requirements. You'll also find insight on choosing the right land for your shouse, ideas, and considerations for shouse design, and insight regarding the shouse construction process. If you have any questions or concerns about building a shouse in the Fox Valley of Wisconsin, contact Virtue Homes!
Please note that shouse and barndominium projects are limited to a specific area extending from Fond Du Lac to Green Bay, and from Waupaca to Lake Michigan, within a one-hour radius from Appleton, WI. Our base prices for all custom home building projects begin at $375,000.
We kindly advise checking with your local municipality's ordinances and regulations to confirm if shouses or barndominiums are allowed in your area.
Understanding Costs & Financing
The cost of a shouse or barndominium, like any home or building, varies depending on the level of customization and specifications. Typically, shouses and barndominiums are more expensive than traditional homes because they include both residential and commercial construction. This can increase the cost of materials, labor, and permits. Additionally, if you are planning to use the property for business purposes, you may need to invest in additional equipment or infrastructure, which can also add to the overall cost.
As your shouse or barndominium builder, we will always stay within your specified budget. Build with us and we’ll provide you with an estimate that’s unique to the shouse or barndominium you want to build.
Financing a Shouse or Barndominium
Financing a shouse or barndominium can be more complex than financing a standard home. Most traditional home loans are not designed or intended to cover the costs of a dual-use property, so you may need to explore alternative financing options.
Some alternative financing options include:
- Commercial loan: a loan designed specifically for commercial or business properties
- Construction loan: a loan used to finance the building process, which then converts into a traditional mortgage once construction is complete.
It's important to speak with a lender who has experience with shouses and barndominiums to ensure you're using the optimal financing option for your unique needs.Financing Info
Shouse & Barndominium Taxes in Wisconsin
In regards to taxes on a shouse or barndominium in Wisconsin, they will be treated similarly to any regular house. However, there are some nuances to consider, particularly when it comes to dual-use construction.
If you are using your shouse or barndominium for both residential and business purposes, the tax rates for each portion will be different. For example, the portion of your shouse or barndominium being used for business will be taxed at a different rate than the portion being used for residential purposes. It's important to work with a tax assessor who can come to your property and help determine the appropriate tax rates.
There are also potential tax advantages and disadvantages to consider when building a shouse or barndominium in Wisconsin. If you are using the property for business purposes, you may be able to take advantage of certain deductions or credits. However, if you are using the property solely for residential purposes, you may not qualify for these tax benefits. A tax professional will be able to help you determine and understand the full tax implications of your shouse or barndominium. They will also help ensure you are paying the appropriate amount and taking advantage of any potential tax benefits.
Insuring a shouse or barndominium property can require different coverage than a traditional home. Since a shouse is a combination of residential and commercial space, it may require both homeowners insurance and commercial insurance.
Homeowners insurance typically covers damage to the structure of your home and your personal belongings, as well as liability protection in case someone is injured on your property. However, it may not provide adequate coverage for a business that is run out of your shouse.
Commercial insurance, on the other hand, is specifically designed to protect businesses from financial losses. It can cover things like damage to business property, loss of income due to business interruption, and liability protection for your business.
If you are running a business out of your shouse, it's important to work with an insurance agent who can help you determine the right coverage for your specific needs. It is recommended to have both types of insurance to ensure that all the aspects of your shouse are covered in case of any damages.
It's also important to note that, if you are living in a shouse and renting out the other part of it, you need to make sure that your insurance policy includes landlord insurance to protect you from any possible legal claims from your tenants.
Choosing Land for a Shouse or Barndominium
When choosing land for a Shouse or Barndominium in Wisconsin, you’ll want to think about zoning regulations, location, size, topography, and utilities. The land must be zoned for residential or mixed-use development. The plot should be large enough to accommodate your house, septic system, and driveway. Access to electricity, water, and sewage is required or further steps will be necessary.
You should always confirm with your developer, municipality, and county to ensure shouse/barndominium construction is allowed on the land before you purchase it. The land being zoned for residential buildings does not necessarily mean these types of structures are allowed.
Designing a Shouse or Barndominium
Designing a shouse or barndominium is a unique project, as you have to plan for both work and living spaces. It's important to take the time to consider your specific needs and preferences in both areas.
The first step in designing a shouse or barndominium is determining the size and layout of the space. The 2 primary factors to consider are the size of your family (bedrooms, living space) and how much space you need for your shop or work area (equipment storage, workspace). Work with a professional shouse floor planner (like us!) to figure out the perfect layout.
In addition to our regular floor plans, Virtue Homes offers custom floor plans for your shouse or barndominium. Our floor plans focus on functionality and efficient use of space while still adding tasteful and innovative design elements you’ll love. We’ll work closely with you to make sure your shouse floor plan meets all your requirements and preferences.
Interior & Exterior Design Styles
- Farmhouse, Barndo
- Large Porch Overhangs
- Lake House
- Log Cabin
Shouse & Barndominium Construction in Wisconsin
- Foundation: Like a conventional house the foundation can be a slab, crawl space, or basement foundation.
- Framing Components: Wood or metal framing techniques will be used to accommodate high ceilings and the large roof span.
- Roofing: Barndominiums use a variety of roofing materials like 30-year architectural shingles. 29 gauge painted metal, slate tiles, clay tiles, or wooden shingles.
- Exterior: Your exterior will depend on the style chosen. We offer various colors with several finishes. The most common exteriors include painted metal, stone, brick, Hardie siding, vinyl siding, or board and batten cedar.
- Insulation: We’ll use standard insulation or spray foam insulation for unmatched energy efficiency.
- Interior Walls: Decide between painted drywall, tongue and groove pine, stone, tile, laminate, and more.
Yes, shouses and barndominiums can be used as full-time residences. They are built to code and meet all necessary building requirements.
Yes. However, extra time, labor, costs and materials will be necessary. A basement below a shouse is not traditional.
Yes. Virtue Homes will make sure your project is built to code and is in compliance with all the local zoning laws in your area
A shouse can save you money on tax dollars because you'll consolidate two structures and have fewer square feet of taxable property. If you are running your business out of your shouse, it will probably fall under the category of dual-use construction.
Some insurance companies may classify a shouse as a shed or outbuilding and may not cover it under a standard homeowners insurance policy. Other companies may classify it as a residence and cover it under a standard policy. It is best to check with your insurance provider and ask about coverage options for a shouse.