The Washington, D.C. metro area is home to many active-duty military personnel and veterans from all service branches. As an expert in the Mid-Atlantic region’s new homes market, we know that the needs of military families are unique and constantly evolving; however, just because military families may be on the move regularly, it does not mean that homeownership is out of the question. In fact, there are many benefits to homeownership as a military service member and some of the best loans are reserved for those who serve or have served our country.
What is a VA Loan?
A VA loan is a unique type of home loan that is guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs. The program was created to offer special long-term financing to eligible veterans. The program carries many benefits, including:
- Allows veterans to qualify for loans that exceed traditional conforming loans
- No down payment required on home purchases
- Choose either fixed-rate or adjustable-rate mortgage
- Lower closing costs
- No monthly mortgage insurance payment required
To find out if you are eligible for a VA loan, check with the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) & Military Tax Benefits
Active members of the military assigned to duty in the United States but not living in government housing may be eligible for the Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH), an entitlement that compensates members for the cost of housing. BAH funds are paid monthly and are not taxable.
Factors that determine amount of BAH:
- Rank or pay grade
- Location in the United States
- Whether or not you have dependents
Factors that do not affect amount of BAH:
- Amount of rent paid
- Number of dependents
The Defense Travel Office has a handy tool for estimating your BAH.
Once you become a homeowner, you may be able to deduct 100% of your mortgage interest. Check Military.com/Finance/Taxes to learn how.
Active members of the military who face an imminent Permanent Change of Station (PCS) stand to benefit from a number of measures designed to ease the cost of their move, including:
- Reimbursement of lodging and meal expenses
- Transportation allowance
- Free transport of your belongings, with the weight allowance determined by pay grade
- Permission to travel to your new area to search for a home
Visit Military OneSource to find more information on benefits for active-duty members on the move.