Active duty military members and their families have to move around quite a bit. In fact, on average, military members move from one base to another every two to three years, making it very difficult to purchase a home. Across the country, 64 percent of American households are homeowners, but when it comes to military households that number drops to 34 percent.
Trulia took a look at which military housing areas are the most and least affordable by comparing military housing stipends with local rent costs.
The results showed that small rural towns offered the best value to live off base with a housing stipend while rentals in bigger cities and top travel destinations were the least affordable and had the lowest share of affordable rental units for entry level enlistees without dependents (who get the lowest amount for a housing stipend). Meanwhile, personnel with the highest pay grades don't have much trouble finding affordable housing, even in the least affordable areas.
The most affordable area for the lowest pay grades (E01-E04) for military members without dependents was Fresno, Calif. with 95.3 percent of rental listings below 75 percent of their housing stipend, while the least affordable for these same people is San Luis Obispo, Calif., with only 8.4 percent of listings below 75 percent of their housing stipend. For any military members in the lowest pay grades with dependents, the most affordable area is New Haven, Conn. (79.5 percent of rental listings below 75 percent of stipend) while the least affordable is Fayetteville, Ark. (9.2 percent of listings below stipend).
To view all of the most and least affordable places for military members based on pay grade, rank, and amount of dependents, click the link below.