Buying vs Renting During a Military Relocation

1 October 2020
 Categories: Real Estate, Blog

When you receive a PCS, securing housing in your near your new station will likely be one of the most important tasks you have. Whether that means getting a spot in base housing, renting a place, or buying depends on your personal financial situation, future plans, and the local market. However, it's common to have little or no knowledge of the real estate market you will be moving into. For this reason, it is important to work with a real estate agent experienced helping military members find housing. 

One of the most important decisions you may make is whether to buy or rent. Below are some things you might consider. 

The Speed of the Current Selling Market 

Most rental agreements are faster to line up than the purchase of a house. If your move is on a tight deadline, you will want to make sure you have housing available as soon as you arrive. If the current selling market is slow, your realtor may suggest a short or long-term rental depending on your commitment to buying at a later date.


Often, your housing allowance will go further when paired with military financing to purchase a home, even if you only intend to keep the home for a few years. However, in some locations, renting will be more economical. You should discuss your financial options with an experienced realtor before deciding to rent or buy. 

Resell Potential 

Military personnel don't always know what the future holds. You may need to sell your home after just a couple of years if you relocate again. Because of this, it's important to take into consideration the strength of the current market and how easy it will be to sell your home when the time comes. If it is a particularly saturated market, your realtor may suggest renting instead of buying. 

Your Knowledge of the Location 

Some people can get a good feel for a new city or town before they move there. You may be able to understand which neighborhood you want to live in or purchase a home without a viewing. However, many people are more hesitant about a large purchase. In this case, your realtor may suggest a short-term rental so you can get a feel for your new location before purchasing a home. 

Whether you decide to buy or rent, it's important to work with a realtor who understands military life and can guide you through the relocation process with as little stress as possible.

For more information, reach out to a military relocation service.