April 28, 2011

Calling all my military ladies!!!

Here is a question for my military gals---

On post living vs. off post living??? Time is flying right now and in 3 short months we will be pcs'ing 3,000 miles from here to Ft. Lewis Washington...My husband and I have been doing a lot of talking about whether to look for housing in near by towns or simply try on post housing, seeing as he will be deploying 6-7 months after we arrive...I am really on the fence about it! I will definitely be moving to Phoenix, AZ after his departure so I could see the no contract thing being a plus to living on post. However, I would love some opinions on the pros and cons if you could!

Thanks Ladies!


  1. Okay first off, housing on Fort Lewis sucks, unless they've updated it. But I think living on post sucks in general because you don't get to keep any of your BAH, but you don't pay utilities.
    I have friends who just PCS'd there and i'm actually from Seattle.

    Look in these towns,

    Puyallup (great traffic flow to work!)

    crap there is one more that I can't think of!!!!

    But that should get ya started!!

    Plus you don't hear all the horns and bells go off .. SOOO annoying!!

  2. I enjoy living on post. I think you become more apart of the military community and lifestyle. You get to know your neighbors and forge friendship that you otherwise wouldn't. I think there's the same pros and cons for living off post as there is on... depending on your post, of course: the people, the apartments....

    I personally have never understood the BAH argument. It's a Housing allowance. Why should the Army/the Goverment/Our tax dollars pay us additional funds for housing when we're being provided housing (opting to live on post)?? Just my take. People say you can profit from it if you find a place lower than your allowance... personally I've never experienced that. I'm sure it's more "doable" in some locations than others.

    I say go on-post and if you don't like it you only gotta deal with it for 6-7 months. :) then you can make a change afterwards.

    You can get contact information for the housing office at Ft. Lewis and see if you can get on the list for a certain neighborhood/possible a new build or refurbished unit! :)

    Good luck! :)

  3. I say go for on-post! Don't you just want that experience at least once to be a bigger part of the community? I really do and we are sooo close :)
    Plus, if you don't like it you only have to deal with it short term. Seems like the perfect opportunity! Good luck!

  4. For us, it isn't so much about the money as it is SoldierMan doesn't want to live at work, you know? He likes being able to leave post and not even see it on the weekends or evenings. I agree, there are pros and cons to both sides but for us, for several reasons, we enjoy living off post. But, like you say, either way it's only for a few months, so it might be simpler to live on post and not have to worry about a rental agreement someplace in the city.

  5. The housing on Ft. Lewis is so-so, they are still building new townhouses which look nice but I'm not sure how long the waiting list is. We are at Ft. Lewis now and lived in Puyallup for 2 years, the traffic was horrible and many times it would take 45 minutes to make the 20 minute drive. We currently live in Lacey, we rent a house and we love it. Well, we love the house but I hate the weather, I can't wait to get out of here.

    When we move we will be living on post but that's because we kind of have to at the new post. I'm excited to actually feel like a military family but it will be an adjustment.

  6. It's kind of tricky. We lived off base while we were in NC because my husband didn't want to live on base and be so close to work, you know? He wanted to be able to leave and relax at HOME and not be on base. Plus, if you live off base, any extra money you get from BAH you keep for yourself to use for whatever you want.

    On the flip side, living on base would include you in more base-type activities and you would probably get to know more wives/families that way. I did meet some wives but probably not as many if I had lived on base. Also, there were a lot of things I did on base so it would have been easier to commute and such. So, it really depends on what type of an experience you want and what's most convenient. Also, do what you think is best for you and the hubby :)

  7. It can really depend on the area. Having never seen most of the post housing, I don't have a great opinion. Most of what I saw my friends living in was pretty nice, although they were junior enlisted with dependents and one NCO. Most of our friends lived off post.

    When P and I started dating, he lived in Puyallup, and it was a long drive in crappy traffic, even to get to the closest gate. When he got back from Iraq last year he moved to Lacey, off exit 114 (email me for the exact place), and we both liked that a lot. It was easy on/off the freeway, and it didn't take him long to get to work in the morning. Plus it's not far to Olympia to shop, but there's still the basics for shopping and some good places to eat right there.

    A lot of the places will be flexible about lease terms, as most of them are used to the military and cater to military.

    You'll be getting here (hopefully) during the beautiful months, as spring doesn't usually show up until June, but June through usually October are beautiful. You might find that you like WA enough to stay while he's gone, but don't let the sometimes long and rainy winters get to you, there's lots to do here!

  8. I really hope ya'll enjoy Ft Lewis -- This part of the country is amazing!!


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