Two more Katrina cottages have found new homes in South Walton.
Joining Seaside Institute's recent rehoming of several Katrina cottages, home builder Ono Horn of Aquarian Development has also chosen to bring in cottages that were used to house victims of Hurricane Katrina who were left homeless after hitting New Orleans and Mississippi in 2005.
The small houses are slim and narrow and very basic, but he thought one would make a great home for his mother who has been living with him for the last two and a half years.
Horn had the first two-bedroom, one-bath, 700-square-foot dwelling moved onto its base in Rolling Dunes Subdivision in Blue Mountain last week. He has been busy refurbishing it with new paint, redoing the interior with new wood flooring, and front and side porches.
He envisions the home's second bedroom being utilized for overnight visits by his children. With that in mind, he also built a sandbox next to the side porch, and is making a nature trail through the lot.
When done, he said the cottage will have a white picket fence around the entire half-acre lot.
Horn said his plan is to put this house in first as a guest cottage and eventually build a main house. He said he enjoys the unorthodox and doing things differently, and he thinks these Katrina cottages are “cute.”
These modular homes are being reclaimed and moved all over as they find a new purpose as guest cottages, mother-in-law suites, housing for the elderly, and by resorts, said Horn.
"They are transition cottages," he said.
Even though he has built million dollar homes, Horn said bringing in a structure that was built off site as opposed to on site makes good business sense.
"Bringing in a modular home as opposed to building on site, you're not bound by the elements. Setting this one up took one week. It's a time savings and cost savings," he said. "It's about price, design, and time frame. And these are hurricane resistant."
He has named this one on the corner of White Dune Cove "Grandma's Getaway."
Horn has another Katrina cottage awaiting his attention that he moved in one street over in Rolling Dunes, which he said he intends to use as a guest cottage on an investment property for a not-yet-built main house.
Horn said some of the residents in Rolling Dunes have expressed objections to the cottages, but he believes they will come around and be onboard once it's all done, and they see the completed project.
He points out that his own home just down the road in Blue Mountain is modular and was featured in Southern Living in 2010. His home is built of steel, but they can be built of wood, as is Grandma's Getaway.
Horn has been building homes in South Walton since 2000.