The term "shouse", which signifies a combination of a garage or shop coupled with a house is throught to be a new concept in the Midwest in that past 20 years. It really isn't a new, but rather an old concept dating back to the Middle Ages in Europe where it was incorporated by my ancestors for many of the same reasons we use it today:
Building a shouse instead of a traditional home might be the right move for you. In addition to being a low-maintenance, cost-effective housing option, a shouse is great for those who want to:
Types of houses and the construction materials depended on country or town location and on regional variation.
Half timber construction was very popular in both the countryside and city in Germany in the middle ages and later. The frame of the building was made of timber, usually oak. The timbers were morticed and pegged together. Triangular bracing was used to give additional support. The spaces between the timbers were filled with waddle and daub, brick, stones, or plaster. The timber remained visible both inside and outside the building.
Buildings were also constructed of brick and stone. Some out buildings were constructed of wood.
Roofs were thatched with straw or reed, tiled or slated.
A common floor plan combined the family's living quarters and the living quarters of the animals. The families rooms were at the one end of the building and usually included: one or more sleeping rooms (kammer) and one or more sitting rooms (stube) depending on the size of the dwelling. An open kitchen dining area (fleet) was in front of the living room and ran the width of the building. A hearth was at the center of the "fleet". Smoke escaped through the roof without benefit of a chimney. The smoke dried the hay which was stored in the loft above.
At the front of the buulding were the animals stalls and the "deele". It was formed by the space between animal stalls on either side. This was the largest area in the building and was entered from the outside by large doors.
The deele was used for threshing grain, breaking flax, gathering the harvest, other labors.