PCS season is a time of excitement, too much coffee and a whole lot of internet searching. As soon as your military member gets their official orders, it’s on. You dive into the online research of the area around your soon to be duty station, many of you relying on various Facebook groups to help you navigate the good, the bad and the ugly. Once you’ve settled on an area, you have to make a big decision before anything else. Do you rent someone else’s home or buy your own?
Renting a home
More and more families are making the decision to live on the economy and rent their temporary homes. A 2010 RAND study found that around 32% of families choose to rent a home out. You are given your BAH and advised to find something that you can afford. Your BAH should cover your rent, water, electric, and trash costs. It is best practice to look for a home to rent that is roughly around $300 under your BAH to account for your utilities.
Tips and tricks for successfully renting on the economy:
Are you ready to buy your own home?
Okay – you’ve done your research and have made the decision that you are ready to buy. This is a big step and one that many military families choose to take. Our family has purchased a home twice in my husband’s nineteen-year career. The first time we lived in it for ten months because he was short-toured. Ten. Short. Months.
Yeah, it was not expected.
Thankfully, we were able to turn around and rent it to another military family for two years before we sold it. This is the risk you run when you buy a home; the military will call. There will also be times you may not be able to sell the home right away. This means you need to be prepared and able to be a landlord – and typically from far away or hire a property management company.
Buying a home also comes with added responsibilities, like having a “oh no” fund in the event that things break – and they will, probably when your service member is deployed. Because, Murphy’s Law. Make sure if you are purchasing a home you can afford it and all the things that come along with homeownership. Consider exploring home warranties as this can be a benefit when something needs repair.
Now, let’s talk about the epically amazing things about owning your own home.
If you’ve made the decision to buy, check out Caliber Home Loans. Calber has been awarded the Military Friendly® brand four years in a row! They have an entire team of dedicated professionals in their Military Lending Program, many who are military affiliated themselves.
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