It’s no secret that the heroes among us, our servicemen and women and their families, have to move…a lot. If you’re part of a military family, you know that the experience can be hectic and unpleasant. The whole thing gets old, doesn’t it? And you definitely don’t want to forget something important just because you’re sick of moving. You’ve got a lot of choices to make and things to keep track of, whether it’s your first move or your fifteenth. To help out our men and women in uniform, we’ve compiled some of the best moving info to make the transition as easy as possible.
Where To Move
Once you receive your orders, you need to decide where to live. You have two choices: on- or off-base housing.
On base housing offers a variety of advantages in regards to convenience. It’s almost always available, contains at least basic amenities, and comes with a built-in military community. On-base housing includes dorm style suites, houses, duplexes, townhomes, and apartments. While the quality of on-base housing can vary dramatically, the Department of Defense is working on improvements after recognizing that reenlistments are 15% higher at bases with high-quality housing. Cons of on-base housing include a lack of privacy (your neighbors are your coworkers!) and potential short-notice relocations. Check out a full list of pros and cons on Military.com.
Off-base housing varies immensely from city to city, in the same way it would for civilians. The choice to live off base should be made in light of your financial situation, the area’s housing market, and your individual or family needs (schools, jobs in your spouse’s field, etc.). Check out apartments for rent in your new city on ApartmentSearch.com to get a lay of the land. You can easily search by price, amenities, and even by lease type if you know your stay will be short! It could also help to talk with those living on-base before your move to learn more about that particular base’s housing quality and on-base environment. If the vibe sounds too much like an episode of “Real Housewives,” off-base housing could be your best bet for a drama-free home life!
How To Move
When it comes to moving all your household goods, military members have an advantage over their civilian friends: the Household Goods Allowance (37 USC 406). Under this act, you can have up to 18,000 pounds of stuff (depending on your rank and number of dependents) shipped from your old duty station to your new, with little to no cost to you. If anything is damaged, you can submit a claim through the Personal Property Office for up to $40,000 within two years of the delivery.
If you don’t want to worry about shipping large furniture pieces or just like to change up your style, you may want to consider military furniture rental for the easiest military move of all! CORT offers special furniture rental packages for military members and their families. Not only do these packages allow you to change up your style with every move, but all the heavy lifting is done for you! Their contracts for active duty military members can be released without penalty in the case of deployment, change-of-station orders, or discharge from the military.
For more information about military moves, visit Military OneSource’s Moving Resource Guide. It’s one of our favorites!