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Information and support for service members and their families. About the Call Center.
Housing & Living – The Essentials
Finding the right place to live is part of the adventure of military life. Your housing options will be influenced by a variety of things such as rank, location and family size, whether you decide to live on or off an installation, and whether you want to rent or buy a home. In addition, you may have specialized needs to factor into your housing decision.
Before you decide where to build your nest, it’s important to know about all of your resources so you can weigh the information and make the best choice for you and your family. Here are some things to consider.
Decide whether to rent or buy.
For military families, the decision to rent or buy a house may surface over and over. Both options have benefits. Renting offers lower maintenance fees and up-front costs, greater relocation flexibility, and a decrease risk of loss if housing values decrease. Buying can provide tax breaks, lower monthly costs (depending on interest rates), the option to renovate or customize, and a chance to build some financial equity. Use the following resources to help determine the right decision for you:
- Renting vs. Buying After a Relocation
- Housing Options for Service Members and Families
- House Hunting? Explore the Veterans Affairs Home Loan Benefit
- Authorized Housing Flexibility Options for Service Members and Their Families Increase During PCS Moves
- VA Home Loans program
- Office of Financial Readiness
- Is Buying Right for You? infographic
- Is Renting Right for You? infographic
Make the most of living on an installation.
Living on an installation can be a great opportunity to become part of a service-oriented community and save money. Military OneSource offers tips to make the most of living on an installation, such as taking advantage of the programs and activities available on base, ideas for getting to know the people in your neighborhood, and connecting with your Military and Family Support Center.
- Military Housing: Living on an Installation for the First Time
- Explore Your Base and Beyond With MilitaryINSTALLATIONS
- About Morale, Welfare and Recreation; Supporting the Military Community
- 7 Ways to Lean on Your Military Community to Settle In to Your New Home Faster
Make your home accessible.
An accessible home is one with modifications that lets an individual with disabilities do what they want and need to do, as independently as possible. Service members or veterans with disabilities may be eligible for assistance under one or more Department of Veterans Affairs programs. Military OneSource highlights some government and community resources that can provide financial and technical assistance for home modifications to allow for more comfort at home.
- Home Modification Resources for Wounded Warriors
- Make a Home Accessible With Department of Veterans Affairs Program
- Understanding Accessible Housing: The Fair Housing Act
Use a financial calculator.
Take the guesswork out of home financing by using a few financial calculators available through Military OneSource and the Office of Financial Readiness. These tools allow you to figure out the numbers for a variety of situations, such as comparing the cost of refinancing your home against the interest you pay on your current loan, computing what your principal payment should be, and determining the estimated payments and interest for an adjustable rate loan.
Financial counseling support
Still have questions or need help finding information? Learn more about free personal financial counseling options available through Military OneSource and installation Military and Family Support Centers. Access classes, seminars, one-on-one counseling and additional information to help you and your family manage finances, resolve financial problems and reach long-term goals such as buying a home, getting an education and planning for retirement.
For more information, call Military OneSource at 800-342-9647, or contact a personal financial manager through your installation Military and Family Support Center.