The Department of Defense released today the 2009 Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) rates.
Military members will receive an average housing allowance increase of 6.9 percent when the new rates take effect, Jan. 1, 2009.
For members with dependents, average increases in the BAH are approximately $95 per month. A typical junior enlisted member with dependents, for example, will find his/her BAH about $68 per month higher than last year, while a senior non-commissioned officer with dependents will receive about $93 more than last year.
Three components are included in the BAH computation: median current market rent; average utilities (including electricity, heat, and water/sewer) and average renter's insurance.
Total housing costs are calculated for six housing profiles (based on dwelling type and number of bedrooms) in each military housing area. The BAH rates are then calculated for each pay grade, both with and without dependents. An estimated $17.4 billion will be paid to nearly 950,000 service members in 2009.
An integral part of the BAH program is the provision of individual rate protection to all members. No matter what happens to measured housing costs, an individual member in a given location will never see his/her BAH rate decrease. This assures that members who have made long-term commitments in the form of a lease or contract are not penalized if the area's housing costs decrease.
In addition, the military services were recently authorized to pay for local moves for military members forced out of a rented home due to their landlord's foreclosure. For more information, service members and their families should contact their installation housing office, or contact Military One Source at 1-800-342-9647, or http://www.militaryonesource.com .
For more information on BAH, visit http://perdiem.hqda.pentagon.mil/perdiem/bah.html .