Living off duty is ideal for a lot of men and women serving as U.S.-stationed active duty members. Whether or not that is a financially sound idea is largely impacted by the individual’s location, and rural is considerably better.

  • Florida Keys, Chicago and New Orleans are among the most expensive places for active military members
  • Fresno and Fayetteville are the most affordable places for active members with or without dependents
  • Rural communities were considered to be the most affordable most commonly

Living off base is ideal for a lot of men and women serving as active military members stationed in the U.S. Whether or not that is a financially sound idea is largely impacted by the individual’s location, and rural is considerably better.

In honor of Military Appreciation Month this May, Trulia broke down the most affordable Military Housing Areas (MHAs) by looking at various regions’ housing stipend and local rental costs.

Housing stipends for active duty members its contingent on a few things: dependents, rank and the housing area.

The least affordable areas for military housing were the Florida Keys, Chicago and New Orleans. Generally, bigger cities and travel hubs had the least amount of affordable rent prices available to active members in the area.

However, what really matters is the military member pay grade. Even in areas considered to be among the least affordable, military personnel in the highest pay grade, E07, can afford 38.4 percent of listings in Chicago.

But in areas like Austin, where housing prices continue to rise, housing allowances were merely more than some of the nation’s most inexpensive places to live.

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Four California cities made the list for most and least affordable places to live as an off-base military member. Ironically enough, the two closest cities topped each list for least and most affordable place for military members without dependents.

Fresno and San Luis Obispo ranked as the most and least affordable place for military members, respectively.

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Email Kimberly Manning

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