Most military families choose to rent if they cannot live on base. Renting is usually easier as they will generally be receiving orders again soon. Because over 80% of the military population rents, let’s look at how to rent an apartment or house in detail.
Moving into that first apartment is a big undertaking. Do your homework which can save you time and frustration.
The military has a government housing office that is responsible for assisting in obtaining housing quickly and efficiently. The housing office manages government housing assignments and terminations and referral to local community rental properties. Mostly the rental program has been automated through the Automated Housing Referral Program (AHRN). AHRNis sponsored by the Department of Defense and is designed to improve the process of securing available housing for relocating military members and their families. The Housing Management Office is a partner with the property owner/manager and ensures the property owners is in compliance with the housing privatization closing documents.
Exercise: Instructor: Ask the participants to brainstorm the considerations that come into play when determining a budget for rent. Write the ideas on a white board or chart paper and incorporate them into the following discussion.Rent will be a big portion of your monthly expenses, but you should create a budget to know exactly how much you'll have to work with. A good rule of thumb is to spend about 25% of your take-home pay on rent. Remember, you'll still have other expenses like groceries, a car, insurance, gas, household supplies, clothes, laundry, entertainment and other incidentals.
Instructor: Take a moment to use the white board or flip chart to ask the participants to share some of their wants/needs in a new neighborhood. Try to tie the participant’s responses into the discussion of what to look for in a new neighborhood.Crime rate. Check statistics on the police department's website.Commute time to and from work and/or school.Neighbors--will you be surrounded by families, students or singles? Should shop the commissary and use the base gym facilities, if your complex does not have free equipment usage.http://www.neighborhoodscout.com/il/ofallon/city-center/#desc
E1-E4 with less than 3 years of service are space required; after 3 years of service, are put on BAH Waiting List, with date of rank having priority; Waterfall program could be available (moving in privatized housing) if space availableDorm resident completes blocks 1-9Sq CC or 1st Sgt completes blocks 12-14Bring in copy of Date of Rank (DOR)If selected for release, this form is then taken to the Housing Office for blocks 18-20Then to Sq CC or lst Sgt for approval and signature in blocks 21-23
The lease is a binding contract that includes your monthly rental price, payment due date, length of the lease, and the consequences of breaking the agreement.1. How long is the lease? What is the penalty for breaking the lease?2. What is the deposit?3. Are any utilities included in the rent? If so, which ones — gas, electric, water, cable?4. Are pets allowed? How much is the pet deposit?5. What sort of security does the complex have?6. Does it have laundry facilities?7. How are repairs handled?8. Will you need special permission to make cosmetic changes, such as painting or putting nails in the walls to hang pictures?9. Can roommates co-sign the lease or will they need separate leases? If a roommate defaults on the lease, what are the consequences for you?
Subject to certain conditions, renters insurance policies pay to repair or replace personal property that is stolen, damaged or destroyed due to fire, severe weather events and other causes. It can also protect your financial assets if you are found liable for property damage or personal injury.
Your landlord's insurance protects their stuff, not yours.Too many people forego renters insurance because they think their landlord's insurance covers their personal possessions. The blunt truth? It doesn't. The responsibility is all yours.Your stuff is worth more than you think.Even if you're just starting out in life, what you own is probably worth a small fortune. When you consider what it would take to replace your clothing, books, furniture, MP3 player, laptop computer, television, bicycle, cell phone and everything else you've accumulated, it can easily add up to thousands of dollars.It can happen to you.It's tempting to assume you won't be the victim of a fire, theft or other property loss, but wishful thinking may lead to financial woes. Renters insurance protects more than just property.What if someone visiting you trips on a rug and breaks an arm? If you have a renters policy, you can breathe easy. That's because, in addition to property protection, a good renters policy includes:Medical expense coverage. This helps reimburse guests for medical expenses related to injuries that happen at your place. Liability insurance. If an injured guest sues you, liability coverage helps with legal bills and pays damages you're found liable for. It's surprisingly affordable.Believe it or not, you can buy a renter’s policy for the price of a pizza or two — just $10 or $15 a month.1
Replacement cost coverage. This type of policy gives you the money you need to buy a new item to replace what you've lost. That's much better than a policy that only covers an item's actual cash value. For example, if your 10-year old television is destroyed, a replacement cost policy would cover the cost of a brand-new set. An actual cash value plan would only give you what the TV was worth before it was destroyed. Coverage for items in transit. Competitive policies cover your possessions if they are lost in transit. Flood protection. Make sure your policy covers property damaged or destroyed by rising water. Very few insurance companies cover flood in a renter's policy. USAA does.Financial strength. Insurance is only as reliable as the company that stands behind it. Make sure the company has high financial strength ratings and a reputation for outstanding service.
The complex can still charge a small termination fee of approximately $25 with military clause. Early termination without orders can range from $1,500 to $2,500 to break the lease.
RSVP - My New Space
Essential financial tips to effectively
move out of the dorms.
Airman & Family Readiness Center
Research, Save, Vacate, & Plan for My New Space
BUDGET, BUDGET, BUDGET
Do your homework:
Know how much you can afford
Know where you want to live
Understand the lease terms
Understand your rights as a renter
Base housing now privatized
Automated Housing Referral Network (AHRN)
Determine price range
Create a budget (see example)
Spend about 25% of your take-home pay on
rent (Worksheet B)
Conduct housing search (Worksheet A)
Budget Elements (Worksheet G)
Payments of security deposits and other
expenses required to move out of the dorms
DO NOT constitute valid requests for Air
Force Aid Society assistance (aka ―Falcon
If you don’t have enough money saved up to
cover your security deposit and related
moving costs, your request to move out will
be denied and your name will be moved to
the bottom of the list.
Water/Sewage/Trash (some properties
include this in the rent)
Move-in expenses (furniture, kitchen, etc.)
Short lease fees
Consider the following: (Worksheet F)
Crime rate, safety
Access to the Metro
Nearby stores, dry cleaners, shops and gyms
Word of mouth
Time of day
Who can move out of the dorm?
Pick up a Request for Application
For/Authorization of BAH from Dorm Mgt.
Follow steps (1st Sgt., Housing, etc.)
Return completed form to Dorm Mgt.
You are now put on the waiting list
Intended Marriage Instructions
Before showing up to sign the lease, find out
what documents your new landlord will want
to see, possibly your:
Role of legal and housing office
Property checklist (Worksheet E)
Who pays for what?
Really read your lease before you sign it.
If you don't understand it, sit down with
someone who does.
Make sure lease contains military clause.
Description of property
Duration of lease
Military clause (Worksheet D)
Use of common property
Your landlord's insurance protects his stuff,
Your stuff is worth more than you think.
It can happen to you.
Renter’s insurance protects more than just
It's surprisingly affordable.
Renters insurance differs from company to
company, so compare benefits before buying.
Some key features to look for:
Replacement cost coverage
Coverage for items in transit
HOT TIP: Consider bundling with your car insurance
company for added savings!!
In Dorm, SAFB OFallon, IL
$5,000 $4.00 $5.09
$10,000 $4.89 $6.11
$15,000 $5.44 $6.80
$20,000 $5.99 $7.48
As of 7/12, $250 deductible
Worldwide coverage, if you get deployed and take your
laptop to Iraq, it is covered
Figure your coverage based on everything you own,
without shopping on sale to replace
Full replacement coverage, with $300,000 liability and
$5,000 medical payments per person
Also covers earthquakes, with 10% deductible
Application Fee (credit and criminal)
$30-$40 (will not be refunded if denied)
Some complexes will not rent to you if you have
anything in collections.
Average $300, but many have military special
Some complexes make you forfeit your
security deposit if you are approved but
don’t rent from them after making
$30 Per Apartment (one-time fee)
Utility Activation Fees
Required if low/no credit
May be split and billed over several months
Amount depends on credit & the rental property
Call the utility company with the address, they
should be able to provide a reasonable estimate
of the deposit that will be required
Water, Sewer and Trash
Estimates: (many complexes include these
expenses, Example D does not)
1 Bedroom $46
2 Bedrooms $56
3 Bedrooms $66
Cable, Internet and Phone
(based on services obtained)
$99 special for one year (not including taxes
and fees—approx. $115)
These fees do heavily increase after one year
Two local competitors in area
If using satellite dishes, cannot be installed
permanently and will only work in some
Pet Deposit of $300, with $150 nonrefundable
Pet Rent of $20-$30 per pet, per month, 2 pet
maximum, under 25 lbs. and some breeds are
Food, toys and treats
Early Termination Charges (be sure military
clause is in rental agreement).
Short Lease—additional fees of $50 per
month can be charged for a 6-mo. lease.
Lockout fees—some will charge you a fee of
$45 or more to unlock your apartment.
Example A-small, older complex (as of 5/11)
No pool or other amenities
Water, sewer & trash inc.
2 BR, 1B, no WD $590, 1000 sq. ft.
Example B—large, older complex with pool
Water, sewer & trash inc. (as of 5/11)
2 BR, 1B $719-$794; 720 sq ft.
2 BR, 1B, WD hookup $810-$885; 920 sq. ft.
3 BR, 1.5B $929-$989; 1,280 sq. ft.
4 BR, 2B $1,234; 2,220 sq. ft.
Example C—(large, older complex with pool),
Water, sewer and trash included (as of 5/10)
1 BR, 1 B $675; 735 sq. ft.
These are specials on 2 BRs
2 BR, B, WD $720; 950 sq. ft.
2 BR, 2B, WD $880; 1,165 sq. ft.
Example D—new, luxury complex with pools,
movie theatre, business center, & fitness center
Water, sewer & trash not included ($46-$66)
8% discount for military (not inc.)
Will take ages 18 and up, most want 21 yr. olds
1 BR, 1B $895-$950; 800-823 sq. ft.
2 BR, 1B, WD $1,025-$1,170; 1,042-1,165 sq. ft
3 BR, 1B, WD $1,280-$1,325; 1,330 sq. ft.
Bills must be put in renter’s name on the day the lease is
No credit is okay, better than bad credit.
Most popular size of apartment is the 1BR, many
complexes don’t have any available.
If two people sign the lease, and one leaves, the other is
responsible for all the rent. You may be able to recover
from your former roommate, but the landlord still expects
all the rent.
You are responsible for anything done to the apartment by
one of your guests.
Use common courtesy about loud music, etc.
Renting furniture will be very expensive. Do not rent from
rental agencies. Shop yard sales, Craigslist, thrift shop,
Airman’s Attic, etc.
Two occupants per bedroom.
Do not pour grease down your garbage
disposal. You will be responsible for repairs.
Do not put aluminum foil in microwave. You
will be responsible for replacing the
microwave. (Cost approx. $250)
Called emergency maintenance—―heat not
working‖—windows were left open.
Wore shorts and t-shirts in below 0 degree
weather, and kept heat constantly running,
for major utility bill of over $275.
Pet took chunk out of wall—repaired with
If you choose to move off base, do not make
this decision lightly, consider:
Have your finances in order
Setup a budget
Have an emergency fund (3-6 months of living
Poor financial choices—can wreck your career
Can receive LOC
Can receive LOR
Can lose a stripe
A. Requirements for a New Apartment
B. Determining Your Affordable Rental Range
C. Apartment Hunting Worksheet
D. Military Clause
E. Apartment Pre-Move-In Damage List
F. Housing: Needs vs. Wants
G. Budget Form
H. Financial Wellness Assessment Tool