Katrina Cottage a/k/a The Crab Shack





The Katrina Cottages were originally designed as a dignified alternative to the FEMA trailer.  They have now evolved into a nationwide option for guesthouses, resorts, camps and affordable housing.  They can range from 308 sq. feet to 1800 sq. feet, and John chose one that was just about 1200 sq. feet for our replacement of the “Boat House.”

Here are some of the choices:



After we found out how much exactly our “Boat House” would have cost, and with the economy doing what it did, this became a good alternative so that we could continue with our plans, but not spend all of our “house” money on what will eventually be a guest cottage.   These Katrina Cottages were designed by Marianne Cusato and her design team.  They now partner with Lowe’s, and after having all our floor plans drawn up by a draftsperson, we wound up buying the plans from them!


Here is the one we chose:


We showed the plans to Thom (our builder) and he recommended we make the back of it a little bigger.  He said the bedroom was kind of small.  Here are the floor plans:


We were so glad we took his advice.  Here is the finished product on the outside:

Little Choptank Aug. 7-14, 09 001wtmk


And here’s the back:


Little Choptank 2013 May 20-22 163wtmk


Isn’t she pretty?   We love her.


More on the inside next time!



  1. Chrissy says:

    Such a cute little crab shack! I love the porch. :-)

  2. Marcia Hill says:

    I am a 71 year old divorced female. I now live in a 20 year old manufactured home. I own the property it is on. I’m thankful for it but, I hate it. I need an affordable dwelling. I immediately thought of the “K” cottages. I need something sturdy (More hurricane suitable than mine). I also have to be conservative w/my money. A “K” cottage is my alternative to a manufactured home. I would so love to build a “real” home but, in this stage of my life, I think this is the best route to take. I welcome any thoughts/suggestions.

    • Hi Marcia, Thank you for writing! I would also suggest you look into the modular homes. They are not the same as a manufactured home, and through my research I have found that most of the companies build for hurricanes by using stronger materials. Where you are limited is they seem to partner with certain manufacturers, be it for appliances, windows and/or kitchen and bath faucets. So you wouldn’t have as many choices as you would if you were building from scratch. While we love our little Katrina Cottage, I will say that the normal plans are small. The ones we looked at were quite small. Our builder made ours bigger in the back, and truthfully, in hindsight, we should have made it bigger in the front too. The modular homes are very reasonably priced, so maybe give them a look and see if they would fit within your budget.

  3. Sheia Green says:

    I would love to see the inside pics. We are thinking of building on a 35X60 lot in Panama City Beach, FL and I’ve been searching for plans that will fit the lot, no wider than 24 feet. Thanks!

    • Hi Sheila,
      I did show the inside of our “crab shack” in my post dated Sept. 25, 2013 entitled “The Crab Shack.” We love our little building, although there are a few things I would change if I had to do it over. Isn’t it always that way? I’d probably make the front of the building a little larger, just like we did in the back, therefore I’d have room for a table and chair set, and also a dishwasher! Also, I’d put a window in the bathroom. The plans for the cottages are sold online and you can look at other concepts here: http://cusatocottages.com/selectaplan.php
      Thanks for writing, and good luck with your cottage!

  4. Its adorable. How much larger did you make the bedroom.., and how did it alter the pitch of the roof over the bedroom..?



    • Hi Karen,
      Sorry for the delay in answering. We made the bedroom and mud room 4 feet larger. Actually our builder at the time suggested it and he just took care of it all.


  1. […] property eight years now, and have been building things little by little – the garage, the Crab Shack, (see the inside here),  the metal building, the bocce court, the wind turbine and let’s not […]

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