I titled this mostly because everyone knows in the military life rules and regulations change on the regular and exceptions sometimes happen as well. Below is a list of most of the important answers to questions that I see asked frequently in regards to military housing:
* The title says mostly for a reason this post is mainly geared towards CONUS MOVES.
Everything You Need To Know About Onpost Housing
To be quite frank their is not much I can tell you about onpost housing because housing offices and housing in general differ by post. Below I have listed some of the most important info I could think of based on FAQ’s and emails I have received.
1.When you live onpost BAH will show up on your service members LES but will be taken right back out for housing.
2. You do not get to keep BAH when living onpost. (In very rare cases some housing offices have offered to give soldiers back a certain percentage of BAH if they took very old housing or another specific situation.)
3. The minute your spouse receives orders you should contact the housing office at your scheduled duty station to see what their criteria is for being placed on their housing list.
Trust me you will hear many times that you can’t be placed on the housing list until your arrive. In alot of cases this is not true. Your best bet is to not listen to hearsay and call housing, only they will know the correct answer.
4. To view floorplans and pictures of most housing on any Army Installation visit https://onestop.army.mil
All the contact information you will need to contact housing will be here in addition to everything you could ever want and need to know such as the general area of base, schools onpost activities and so on.
5. In most cases the size of housing you will receive is based on your family size and ages of your children. The Army has standards and rules in which they go by in deciding at which age children can room together and also on gender of child. Same gender children share a room up to 10 years of age and opposite sex can share a room until six years of age – no more than two children may share a room in any case). Taken from http://www.garmisch.army.mil/Directorates/D%20P%20W/housing.asp
6. When moving into onpost housing be prepared to pay the pro-rated amount in BAH for that month. If for some reason you have difficulty obtaining the the finances for it, you can apply for what is known as a ASHA LOAN also known as Advanced Station Housing Loan. This is a interest free loan in which your soldier will have to fill out form DA-4187 and submit to his/her command to apply for. Thanks to a reminder tip from a reader, you can also apply for an AER (Army Emergency Relief Loan). The loan is interest free through the Army and pretty much guaranteed. Is is based on need and not credit . Your spouse’s higher up will have to sign off on it and their is a small process. You can learn more about AER Loans here.
When my family and I PCS’ed to Hunter Army Airfield, we had to get an AER loan to pay for first month’s rent and the security deposit for a house we were going to rent offpost.
Update: I have been told that some places have changed this , but as ahead of time.
7. Houses come with stoves and refrigerators. Both onpost homes I have lived have had dishwashers and central air. Don’t count on having a washing machine and dryer waiting for you. Here in Hawaii we were provided with washer and dryers but this is definitely a first. Some older onpost homes tend not to have central air so be sure to ask about there AC situation ahead of time.
8. Many housing offices allow you to paint your home onpost but usually you have to request permission via a form filled out and submitted to the housing office.
9. No you cannot get a house onpost if you are not married. No offense to the girl friends and fiancee’s but you wouldn’t believe how many emails I have received asking that question. The reality is that the Army does not acknowledge you unless your married and even then it’s a hit or miss :)
10. If your spouse happens to be deployed and you get offered housing as long as you have a housing POA or in some cases a general POA you will be allowed to taken care of all the housing paperwork to move onpost.
11. Want to see a review from people who many possibly be at your current or future post visit my pal and one of the best writers on PCS moves I know Susanna at Military Duty Stations
12.Yes you can check your position on the housing list online but I would not count on it. The list said I was #120 when I got called for a house the first time and #62 when I moved here to Hawaii. The reality is that alot of it will depend on when people arrive and if people are bumped off the list should their orders change.
13. Lastly yes it sucks but the fact of the matter is that different ranks will pay different amounts of BAH for the same house.
I hope this list has given you a general outline and answered some of your burning questions.
Feel free to email me at email@example.com with your questions.
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