The Department of Defense has unveiled the 2024 Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) rates, signaling an average increase of 5.4% set to take effect on January 1, 2024. The BAH is the money the Department of Defense gives military personnel to offset their cost of living if they do not live on base. The rate allowance depends on location, pay grade, and whether or not you have dependents. BAH rates are published here:
Approximately one million Service members are expected to benefit from an estimated $27.9 billion payout.
You’ll be interested to know that several junior ranks, all E1-E5 with dependents, saw their base housing allowance go down 3%, while general officers got a 9.39% BAH increase.
Only one group of officers with dependents, Majors, saw a BAH decrease. They took a two percent hit on BAH in the 32578 area code.
Junior Enlisted Airman, Sailors, Soldiers, Marines and Guardians without dependents also took a hit to their BAH in the 2024 schedule. Junior Enlisted without dependents saw an almost 3% decrease in the amount of BAH allocated to them by the Department of Defense. Most company and field-grade officers (Lieutenants through Colonels) also took a [smaller] hit to their housing allowance.
Don’t worry about the generals who are unaccompanied. They got between a 3.4% and 4.7% increase in their allocation if they are stationed at Eglin Air Force Base – according to the data the Department of Defense provided.
A press release from the DoD adds BAH rates “have been meticulously crafted to reflect the diverse geographic market conditions across the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii. The Department annually collects rental housing cost data for around 300 military housing areas, employing a comprehensive approach that includes inputs from sources such as the U.S. Census Bureau survey data, Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Price Index, commercial subscription rental cost databases, and industry-leading online rental listing websites. To determine the BAH rates, median market rents and average utilities are considered for each military housing area, encompassing six housing profiles based on dwelling type and the number of bedrooms. These rates are then calculated for each pay grade, accounting for dependency status, mirroring the housing choices of civilians with comparable incomes.”