The process of purchasing a home can be overwhelming, but when you factor in a PCS move, stress can skyrocket. When transferring to a new duty station, you don’t always have the luxury of being familiar with the area and you may not have a relationship with a local realtor, which can present issues. Don’t get discouraged. There are ways to help simplify the process.
Dive into Your Budget
PCS moves can affect your finances in both the short and long-term. Examine your budget to determine the price range in which you should be searching. At the new duty station, your civilian spouse may have different hours, leading to a pay differential.
You may lose certain entitlements that you’ve grown accustomed to receiving, such as COLA. Living in a home you can’t comfortably afford isn’t the goal. Update your budget so that your realtor can find exactly what you want and need.
Use Your Permissive Leave
As part of a PCS, service members are often authorized permissive leave, more commonly known as house-hunting leave. Permissive leave is generally granted up to a ten-day period.
This leave is especially beneficial because it gives you the opportunity to visit the new duty station, scope out the properties on your short list and have a face-to-face meeting with your realtor. If you plan to take this leave, notify your relator in advance so that they can arrange everything beforehand to save time.
Consider the Future
As a military family, you can literally be here today and on the other side of the world in a few years. When searching for a home, think about the future. Is this a forever home or will you sell or rent if you’re transferred?
This consideration will help guide your search. For instance, with a forever home, you only need to worry about your wants and needs, but with a home you plan to sell or rent, you must think about the market. Always think ahead.
A professional realtor is ready and equipped to meet the unique needs of military families during this transition. Don’t hesitate to ask for assistance.
* Rebates are not allowed in all states. In some states, a gift card or commission credit at closing may be provided in lieu of the Cash-Back bonus. You must register with U.S. Military on the Move® before contacting a real estate agent and be represented by the assigned real estate firm at closing to qualify. All real estate transactions are negotiable. Other terms and conditions may apply.
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