Lowe's Makes "Katrina Cottages" Available Nationwide

The small cottages designed to replace FEMA trailers after Hurricane Katrina are popular, so popular that Lowe’s has decided to offer them in their stores.

“We had so many requests that the company decided to make them available nationwide,” said Chris Ahearn, spokeswoman for Lowe’s at the company’s Mooresville, N.C., corporate office, told the Contra Costa Times.

Katrina Cottage plans can be purchased from Lowe’s for $700, with the lowest priced “building kit” starting at $17,000. The kit includes all the materials needed for the construction of the cottage. More upscale customers can choose more upscale finishes.

The cottages are cute and come in a variety of styles and sizes from 1.5-5 bedrooms. Lowe’s says people have been using them as vacation homes, guest houses, and, yes regular homes, too.

The first step toward building a Katrina Cottage is to stop by Lowe’s Project Desk, Porterfield said. After selecting and purchasing a plan, customers are told to find their own contractor and submit blueprints for approval to their local building or planning departments. After they secure local permits, Lowe’s provides the customer with all building materials, from nails to the kitchen sink, which can be delivered to the job site.

Although some say the plans can be made a reality in six weeks, waiting for permits and inspections usually increases the time to several months. Porterfield also made it clear that the homes are not weekend projects.

“These are not designed for a do-it-yourself-er,” he said. “These are made for a licensed contractor.”

Although the base materials packages cost from $17,000 to $36,000, they do not include the foundation, piers, heating and cooling systems, septic or sewer systems, cost of labor or permits.

Would you buy a Katrina Cottage? We have to admit they’re pretty cute… A lot cuter than a FEMA trailer. It’s kinda, you know, creepy though. A little.

Cottage industry: Lowe’s sells ‘Katrina’ home plans [Mercury News]
Lowe’s Katrina Cottages