Finance

Service members and veterans have financial benefits and resources that their civilian friends don’t.  Make sure to take advantage of these benefits. These include everything from exclusive life insurance options, to retirement benefits, to VA home loans.  You have an amazing opportunity to save money, plan for retirement, and buy a home at good rates without a down payment.

Overseas PCS

Overseas PCS: Things Not to Forget When PCS’ing

Less Obvious But Still Essential Overseas PCS Tips There is a lot of advice out there on what to pack and how to prepare for your Permanent Change of Station (PCS) overseas. Starting with deciding what to ship across the world and what to keep back, and ending with your final check list the night… Read more »

budgeting for military families

3 Basics of Budgeting for Military Families

Basics of Budgeting For First-Time Budgeters Have you ever wondered where all your monthly income went? We work hard every week and can’t seem to save anything or invest in our future. Many of us don’t have a budget nor do we record where our money is going. Simply put, the nexus of our decision… Read more »

VA Loan Right For You

Is a VA Loan Right for You?

How to Determine if a VA Loan is Right for You? VA loans are mortgage loans that are readily available for service members, veterans, and eligible surviving spouses. These loans are supported by the federal government and are provided by private lenders such as banks and mortgage companies. The VA guarantees a portion of the… Read more »

DFAS myPay

DFAS myPay: Help Getting Started

DFAS myPay The United States Military works hard to ensure that the individuals that make up its branches are provided for in all areas of life such as housing, healthcare, and finances. The Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) is an agency of the United States Department of Defense (DOD), headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana. DFAS… Read more »

VA Loan Best Practices

Best Practices For the VA Loan Process

VA Loan Best Practices If you are an active service member, spouse, or dependent, the chances are great that you have heard of VA Loans. You may have even looked into them or read about them somewhere on the internet. A few weeks ago, we published an article explaining why you should consider using this… Read more »

Preparation for an OCONUS Move

OCONUS Move: Some Helpful Tips Some of the moves that families experience are within the same state or just a few hundred miles away. For other service members, the move could be across the United States or outside the continental U.S. (OCONUS). Knowing what to expect and how to prepare is a game changer in… Read more »

best budget apps military

Best Budget Apps for the Military

Long term planning goes hand in hand with military service. Enlistments and re-enlistments are for years at a time. Military members are always looking to the next inspection, the next physical training test, the next test to rise in rank. Just like some of their civilian counterparts, however, most don’t enjoy planning ahead with money…. Read more »

Financial Steps Early Military

Financial Steps to Take Early In Your Military Career

Set Yourself Up for Financial Success Early in Your Military Career If you are a young or new service member, not only do you have your whole career in front of you, you also have the benefit of having time on your side. It’s important to make smart financial moves now that you’re young, while… Read more »

best states veterans

10 Best States for Veterans

10 Best States for Veterans Deciding where you want to move is one of the many decisions made when planning your transition out of the military. After being told where to move from duty station to duty station, you now have the choice of where you want to move and there may be many places… Read more »

financial tips for enlisted service members

Financial Tips For Enlisted Service Members

More than the GI Bill: College Bound, Service Member Financial Tips With a little planning you can stretch the GI Bill into a graduate degree.  Here are a few tips that should help you create a five-year plan to get you through one enlistment and in to college.  There are tips spanning those looking to… Read more »

PCS Move Overhaul 2021

PCS Move Overhaul Underway for 2021

Big Changes Ahead for Next Year’s PCS Moves On April 30, 2020, the US Transportation Command (TRANSCOM) announced the award of a $7.2 billion contract to the American Roll-On Roll-Off Carrier Group (ARC), which is based out of Parsippany, New Jersey and provides global logistics and shipping support to the US Government. ARC manages the… Read more »

SSI and VA Beneficiaries Have Until May 5 to File Taxes

Deadline For Some SSI & VA Beneficiaries with Kids is May 5

ATTENTION: SSI and VA beneficiaries You may be eligible to receive an additional $500 per dependent. If you are a Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Veteran Affairs (VA) beneficiary with dependent children and you have NOT filed your taxes for 2018 or 2019, then you may need to read this. If those conditions apply to… Read more »

Deployment Financial Planning

Financial Planning For Your Next Deployment

Deploying?  3 Tips to Get Your Financial House In Order An overseas deployment rotation is a reality that most service member experience in their careers. However, over the last two decades, there has been an increased requirement of the United States military in areas around the world. In the past, most of this burden would… Read more »

COVID19 Stimulus Check

Best Ways to Use Your Covid-19 Stimulus Money

Covid-19 Stimulus Check Investment Opportunities Thanks to the Coronavirus Aide, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act millions of Americans will be receiving stimulus checks throughout April. A single taxpayer will receive $1,200, a married couple filing jointly will receive $2,400, and each qualifying dependent will add $500 to the check. Quick math will show a… Read more »

The VA Loan

The VA Loan, A Military Benefit You Should Use

The VA Loan, A Military Benefit You Should Use As a service member or veteran, you have a very important benefit you can use to help your family, the VA loan. The VA Home Loan program has been available for more than 75 years now. And can be a good way to get into a… Read more »

veterans benefits banking program

New Veterans Benefits Banking Program

The New Veterans Benefits Banking Program Detailed As of December 20, 2019, the VA has a new program to help veterans receive better access to banking. Through the Veterans Benefits Banking Program (VBBP), the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Association of Military Banks of America (AMBA) are working to offer veterans and service members… Read more »

help military families covid19

Help For Military Families During COVID-19 Pandemic

Organizations Supporting Military, Veterans and Their Families During The COVID-19 Pandemic During this time, many military families might be struggling either emotionally or financially. A spouse might have lost their job, they might need to spend more money on childcare, and regular resources could be limited. The good news is that there are different programs… Read more »

National Guard and Reserves Benefits

Big Boosts for the National Guard and Reserves

There is a possible change coming for members of the National Guard and the Reserves. Elected officials want to ensure that even part-time service members are receiving full credit for the work that they do. In February, a group of both Republican and Democratic senators introduced a measure that would do just that. Called, the… Read more »

no more VA loan limits

No More VA Loan Limits In 2020

Starting on January 1st, 2020, there will be changes to the VA loan limits. Because of the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019, VA loan limits will be eliminated and VA loan fees will rise. This new law was signed into law by President Trump earlier this year. This bill has been a… Read more »

military shopping

3 Million to Gain Access To Military Shopping

According to an article by Military Times, 3 million more people will gain access to military shopping in 2020. These new customers will be able to shop at the Commissary and the Exchange.  In addition, they will have access to some MWR programs. ** For latest updates, go here. When Will They Gain Access This… Read more »

Best PCS Tips

Best PCS Tips For Military Families

Tips For Military Families Set to PCS Summer means PCS season for military families. While you might not be moving this year, you probably know plenty of people who are, and your own PCS could be coming up soon too. PCSing can be a stressful time. You have to move your home, your kids, your… Read more »

SCRA

SCRA and MLA: How They Can Help You Financially

Have you ever been frustrated about your credit situation? You may have joined the military, hoping to get ahead, but you still have some debt you need to deal with. Did you know there are protections just for active duty military members that can help you financially? Life in the military can be unpredictable, and… Read more »

COLA

COLA 2020 Changes

COLA Changes For 2020 COLA stands for Cost of Living Adjustment and is a way to increase benefit amounts in order to keep up with inflation. COLA in 2020 went up 1.6% Because of federal law, the COLA changes to the VA’s compensation and pension rates are the same percentage increases that social security benefits… Read more »

military pay raise

2020 Military Pay Raise Impact

A 3.1% military raise for 2020 is set to take effect as of Jan 1, 2020.. This is higher than the 2019 raise of 2.6% and the highest raise since 2010, when the raise was 3.4%. Of course, before this is to happen, there will be debate about the raise within Congress and won’t be… Read more »

Reserve Pay Dates

Reserve Pay Dates 2020

Here are the 2020 Reserve pay dates.  These dates apply for pay for the following: Army Reserve Pay Dates Marine Corp Reserve Pay Dates Navy Reserve Pay Dates Air Force Reserve Pay Dates Coast Guard Reserve Pay Dates If you serve in the Reserves for the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, or the Coast… Read more »

Free Tax Filing For Military

Free Tax Filing for Military

Paying someone else to file your taxes for you can be very expensive. Thankfully, that’s an added expense that military families don’t have to pay. Below are a list of places that have adopted a ‘free tax filing for military’ mindset. Explore these options and file your federal and state taxes for free this tax… Read more »

Military Star Card

Military Star Card: An Overview

The Military Star Card is a popular credit card available for members of the military. Here is what you need to know about this card. What Is The Military Star Card? The Military Star Card is a line of credit exclusive for military personnel and their families. Those that use the card will receive a… Read more »

military tax resources

Resources for Military to Thrive this Tax Season

Tax season is here! This dreaded time of the year doesn’t have to be so bad, especially for military families. Military and their families get to take advantage of free tax filing, free access to tax consultants, special tax exemptions, and when eligible, extra time to file. Now that the military W-2 forms are out,… Read more »

VA Loan Requirements

VA Loan Requirements: What You Need to Know

When it comes to buying a home, many military families use a VA loan, which is one of the benefits of serving in the US Armed Forces . This type of loan can save a lot of money and can allow families to buy their own home before they would otherwise be able to do… Read more »

SGLI

SGLI Servicemembers Group Life Insurance

What is SGLI coverage? SGLI stands for Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance.  SGLI provides low-cost term life insurance coverage to service members that are eligible. If the service member is eligible, they are automatically issued the maximum in SGLI coverage. They are automatically enrolled and will not have to apply. Service members can however decline the… Read more »

military spouse state income tax

Tip to Help Military Families Save on Taxes

Military Spouse State Income Tax The Veterans Benefits and Transition Act of 2018 allows military spouses to choose the same state of legal residence as their service member. The new rules covering the military spouse state income tax would apply to local taxes and would also apply for voting purposes. All of this even if… Read more »

VA Loan Limits

VA Loan Limits 2019

One of the benefits of serving in the US Armed Forces is the ability to get a VA loan in order to buy your own home.  There is no cap on how much you can borrow to finance your home with the VA.  However, there are limits on the amount of liability that the VA… Read more »

Best Ways To Use Your Military Raise

Best Ways To Use Your Military Raise

For 2020, service members saw a 3.1% increase from the previous year. Military raises don’t ever seem to be enough, but that doesn’t mean you should just ignore them or not have a plan for that extra money. How to Best Use Your Military Raise There is so much can you do with this extra… Read more »

Save money and energy in your military home

11 Ways To Save Money and Energy in Your Military Home

Home is where the heart is or — for service members and their families — home is where the military sends you. For each and every on-post house that you customize and make your own, there are small tweaks and fixes you can employ that will save your military family money. Some duty stations provide… Read more »

Money saving hacks when one parent is in school

Money Saving Hacks To Use When One Parent Is In School

When a service member or spouse decides to go back to school, there usually needs to be changes to the family’s budget. Most likely, there will be a loss of income. Even if all of the educational bills are paid for through the military and financial aid, saving money during the time they are in… Read more »

Money saving hacks for vacation

20 Money Saving Hacks For Your Next Vacation

When you start to plan your next vacation, you may be looking for ways to save money. Traveling expenses can add up, but if you can find ways to save money, you will be able to keep your costs lower than they would otherwise be. Here are 20 money saving hacks for your next vacation:… Read more »

Grocery Shopping Hacks To Save Money In Your Grocery Budget

16 Ways to Save Money on Groceries

If you are working on your budget, your grocery bill might be one of the best ways to save some money. You could be overspending. According to the USDA charts for July 2018, a family of four with kids between the ages of 6-8 and 9-11 should be spending $644 on a thrifty plan, $848… Read more »

Special Medical Military Pay

Special Pay – Medical – Military Pay

As a service member, you will receive different types of pays during the course of your military career. There is your base pay, BAH for your housing and BAS for food. There are also different special and incentive pays, over 60 of them which you may or may not qualify over the course of your… Read more »

military special pay

Special Pays – Part 2 – Military Pay

As a service member, you will receive different types of pays during the course of your military career. There is your base pay, BAH for your housing and BAS for food. There are also different special and incentive pays, over 60 of them which you may or may not qualify over the course of your… Read more »

Ways to Save Money on Military Housing

Ways to Save Money On Housing

What you pay for housing each month can be one of your most significant expenses. You could feel like you are paying too much or you might be looking for a place to live. Here are a few ideas to help you save money on your housing. Ways To Save Money On Your Housing If… Read more »

Special Military Pay

Special Pay and Incentive Pay for the Military

As a service member, you will receive different types of pays during the course of your military career. There is your base pay, BAH for your housing and BAS for food. There are also different special and incentive pays, over 60 of them which you may or may not qualify over the course of your… Read more »