Quick tips for a smooth military relocation

Miniature house with a soldier signing papers in the background

When you or one of your family members are in the military service, changing homes is an inevitable part of your lifestyle. Even though you expect it, the process of relocating is still a lot of work.

Spare yourself from unnecessary stress and inconvenience with this list of helpful tips for your next military move:

Is it a permanent change of station or just a temporary duty move?

The first thing you need to consider is whether you are up for a permanent change of station (PCS) or a temporary duty move (TDY).

If you’ve already completed your tour of duty at your current location or have been assigned to spend more than 20 weeks at your new duty station, you are due for a PCS. For service members, this typically happens once every three to four years.

On the other hand, if your relocation requires only a limited amount of time—more than 31 days, but fewer than 20 weeks—only a TDY is in order.

For a PCS, you will be eligible for a complete household move. As such, you will be notified well ahead of time so you can prepare for your impending relocation.

Get a good head start

An order for a permanent change of station is typically given 90 days ahead of the move, which gives you plenty of time to plan and carry out your move.

The first thing to do as soon as you get your PCS orders is to put together a PCS move checklist. Start your to-do list with a file containing all your essential documents, including:

  • Identification, such as passports, copies of your birth certificate, Social Security cards, etc.
  • Medical and dental records
  • School records
  • Financial documents
  • Legal documents, such as wills, active power of attorney, divorce or child custody papers, etc.
  • Vehicular title and registration, if applicable
  • Inventory of personal belongings

Start researching about your next station, as well. Find out about the local amenities and lifestyle so you can prepare yourself and your family for the necessary adjustments that you will need to make.

This is also the time to decide how you choose to relocate. You have the option to avail of moving services provided by the military or hire your own (with a reimbursement of up to 95% of the cost of the authorized weight allowance).

For more tips on how to get started on your PCS move, read this comprehensive guide.

Find a reliable real estate professional who specializes in military homes

For a smooth and hassle-free transition, a huge step in the right direction would be to choose a Realtor who specializes in military relocation assistance.

It’s essential to know that not all real estate agents are the same; and the process of military relocation has different requirements and nuances compared to the average homebuying process.

When it comes to the specific real estate needs of members of the military, a Military Relocation Professional (MRP) will give you an instant advantage because they are trained and certified by no less than the National Association of REALTORS (NAR) to be considered qualified for the job at hand. An MRP will be more familiar with your relocation timeline, the procedures and nuances that you will need assistance for, the appropriate financing options, and ultimately, the ideal selection of homes that will best suit your needs.

If you are assigned to relocate to Las Vegas, trust me, Loralee Wood, to be the Military Relocation Professional who can lead you to the next home of your dreams.

Research about your ideal financing options

Changing homes will inevitably cost some money, so it pays to know what options you have at your disposal. First of all, your MRP-certified Realtor will guide you on your decision about whether to rent or to buy.

But if you’re guaranteed to spend a few years in your newly assigned station, purchasing may be a better option than renting. For this, you’ll need to look into the best mortgage programs that will fit your needs and financial capacity.

Military members and their families can avail of home loans backed by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs. VA loans require zero down payment as well as no mortgage insurance, because the government guarantees these loans, protecting the lender in case the borrower is unable to pay.

Learn more about how to apply for a VA loan here.

For the best professional guidance and assistance for your military relocation in Las Vegas, you can count on me, Loralee Wood. Let’s discuss your moving plans and goals today. Call 702.419.3212 or email loralee(dotted)wood(at)cbvegas(dotted)com to learn more about my services, as well as the latest and finest homes for sale in this highly sought-after market.