Permanent Change of Station (PCS) to Hawaii is a unique experience for military service members and their families. Not only is Hawaii a beautiful and vibrant place to live, but it also offers a range of specific benefits for those relocating here. In this blog post, we will discuss the top military PCS benefits for a move to Hawaii.
1. Cost of Living Allowance (COLA)
Hawaii has a high cost of living, so service members relocating to Hawaii are entitled to a Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) to help cover the increased expenses. This allowance is calculated based on the location, rank, time in service, and number of dependents of the service member.
2. Housing Allowance (BAH)
In addition to the COLA, service members in Hawaii are entitled to a Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) based on the zip code of the new duty station. The BAH is intended to cover the cost of renting or purchasing a home, which can be quite expensive in Hawaii.
3. Temporary Lodging Allowance (TLA)
When service members arrive in Hawaii, they are entitled to a Temporary Lodging Allowance (TLA) to cover the cost of temporary lodging while they search for more permanent housing. The TLA can be used for up to 60 days.
4. Relocation Assistance
The military provides relocation assistance to help service members and their families with the moving process. This includes help with finding a new home, shipping personal belongings, and other aspects of the move.
5. Travel Entitlements
Service members and their families are entitled to travel entitlements to cover the cost of transportation during the PCS process. This includes the cost of transportation for the service member and their dependents, as well as the cost of shipping personal belongings to Hawaii.
6. Tax Benefits
The awesome thing about all the financial benefits listed above is that service members are entitled to them being tax-free! Even better, when qualifying for a VA loan, lenders will often “gross up” your monthly, recurring tax-free income by 25%, allowing you to qualify for more home. In Hawaii, your BAH & COLA are significant, so that adds quite a bit to your qualifying power!
7. Spouse Employment Assistance
Military PCS benefits include spouse employment assistance. This includes job search assistance, resume writing services, and networking opportunities to help spouses find employment in Hawaii.
8. Child Care Assistance
Service members and their families are entitled to childcare assistance, including access to on-base childcare facilities and subsidies for off-base childcare. In Hawaii, many military child care facilities offer a unique and enriching environment for children.
9. Leisure and Recreation
Hawaii offers a range of leisure and recreation opportunities for service members and their families. From beautiful beaches to outdoor activities like hiking and surfing, Hawaii has something for everyone. Military families can also take advantage of discounted tickets to local attractions and events.
In conclusion, a PCS to Hawaii offers unique benefits for military service members and their families. From a Cost of Living Allowance to help with the high expenses of living in Hawaii, to access to top-quality healthcare and recreation opportunities, a move to Hawaii is a fantastic opportunity for military families. For more information about using your VA home loan benefits to become a Hawaii homeowner, contact our team today at 808-792-4251 or fill out our secure online loan application.