Thousands of military families relocate to San Antonio yearly. In fact, San Antonio is home to one of the largest active and retired military populations.
Housing options are allowed in the military, but it will depend on your marital status, dependents, and rank.
If you are married and living with your spouse and/or minor dependents, you can decide on on-base housing. If you decide to live off-base, you will be given a monetary allowance called BAH (Basic Allowance for Housing).
Your rank, location, and whether or not you have dependents will determine the amount of your BAH.
If you are single, you will most likely spend the next few years of your military service residing on-base in the dormitory, or barracks. The policies concerning single military members living off-base at government expense vary from service to service, and even from base to base.
At most locations, single members can choose to get a place off-base at their own expense.
Government owned-military housing
This refers to the traditional base housing options. The Department of Defense owns and maintains your housing. If you choosing government-owned housing, you give up your BAH, but you don’t have to pay rent or utilities.
Public-Privatized military housing
These are housing units that are new, improved, or renovated. The rent is based on the Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH). Your local housing office will have more information about availability and amenities.
Single unaccompanied housing for service member
This refers to a single or shared room with a private or shared bath. With this option, you don’t have to pay rent or most utilities, but you have to give up your housing allowance.
Renting a home off the installation
If you think renting is your best option, you have to communicate your military situation to the landlord. The Servicemember’s Civil Relief Act (SCRA) gives military members special legal protections when renting. Visit your unit’s legal assistance office for more information. You also have to get a renter’s insurance to protect you and your property.
Buying a home off installation
If you’ve decided you want to put down roots and buy a home in San Antonio, here are some things you need to consider:
The first thing that you have to consider is where you will be stationed at.
If you will be stationed at Lackland, you can choose from homes for sale on the southwest side of town. Lackland Heights, Alamo Ranch, and Laurel Mountain Ranch are some of the popular choices.
If you will be stationed at Randolph, properties on the northern side would be your best option. Cibolo, Converse, and Live Oak are the popular choices for many military members.
If you will be stationed at Fort Sam Houston, there are many neighborhoods you can choose from. The base is located just north of downtown. Some of the popular options include the Alamo Heights neighborhood, Bel Meade, Terrell Hills, and Olmos Park.
You also need to determine how much you can afford each month on a mortgage. Take into account your household income, expenses, and your housing allowance (BAH).
Assess what your family needs and wants are particular to a home. Make a list of all your must-have amenities and features.
As a relocation expert, I can help you find the right property that fits your needs, desires, and budget. I truly enjoy helping military families as they move to San Antonio.
Call me, Melissa Wiggans, at 210-332-0310. Whether you are stationing to Fort Sam Houston, Lackland AFB, Randolf AFB or San Antonio Military Medical Center, let me help make your move easier!
Hi, I'm Melissa Muse Wiggans, owner and broker of Real Estate Muses.