Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) rates for Hampton Roads Virginia are decreasing in most pay ranks in 2012 according to new Defense Department data released this week.
In our area an E-7 with dependents living in the Hampton / Newport News VA metro area will receive $1,566 in 2012 compared to $1653 in 2011 for a monthly housing stipend or $1,668 monthly in Norfolk VA Beach versus $1728 in 2011. An O-4 with dependents in or near Newport News/ Hampton / Williamsburg will receive $2.148 in 2012, the data shows which is unchanged from 2011. Interesting that the officer pay rate stays the same while enlisted rates decreased. Who made that analysis ?
Rates increased most in the area surrounding Minot Air Force Base, N.D., where the monthly stipend spiked 40 percent. Rates in the Washington, D.C., metro area, home to more than 43,000 service members, also saw a sharp rise, up nearly 10 percent from 2011, the new data shows.
These rates are for those stationed at Hampton Roads area military facilities including Camp Peary in York County, Fleet Training Center Dam Neck in Virginia Beach, Fort Eustis in Newport News, Langley Air Force Base in Hampton, Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story in Virginia Beach, , Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, Naval Station Norfolk, Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach, the Coast Guard Integrated Support Command Portsmouth.,Portsmouth Naval Medical Center, Saint Julian Creek Naval Depot Annex in Chesapeake,U.S. Joint Forces Command (USJFCOM)-Suffolk, Fort Story in Virginia Beach, and Naval Weapons Station Yorktown in York County, Yorktown Coast Guard Reserve Training Center
When BAH Rates dip, the military’s “individual rate protection” policy ensures that troops already settled in a location will not see their BAH decrease for as long as they remain in that location, assuming no change in dependency status or a reduction in pay grade. That policy assures that troops who have signed long-term leases are not penalized if housing costs in their area fall.
When rates go up, all service members in a given location get the increase.
BAH rates remain high by historical standards. Until 2005, troops were expected to cover some of their housing costs out of their own pockets. But Congress changed the law, and now the Pentagon gives troops 100 percent of estimated housing costs for their area.
Median rental costs are only one factor in the complex formula officials use to determine BAH rates. It also includes the average utilities costs and renter’s insurance rates. The Pentagon analyzes that data annually for 365 U.S. housing markets, including Alaska and Hawaii.
Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH)
The Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) is a U.S. based allowance prescribed by geographic duty location, pay grade, and dependency status. It provides uniformed Service members equitable housing compensation based on housing costs in local civilian housing markets within the United States when government quarters are not provided. A uniformed service member stationed outside the U.S., including U.S. territories and possessions, not furnished government housing, is eligible for Overseas Housing Allowance (OHA).
Service members can calculate their individual BAH rates using the BAH Calculator.
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