AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) - Fort Gordon soldiers and their families will have a little more to live on in 2014. The post's basic housing allowance went up 11 percent Jan. 1.
A service member can choose to live on the post or off. A basic housing allowance is given to those who chose to go off the installation. The allowance varies by the cost of living in each city and also by rank.
In 2013, an unmarried soldier with no dependents at the pay grade E-6, was given $990 for housing expenses.
In 2014, that same E-6 will receive $1,140 for housing. Some, like 2nd Lt. Tyler Morrow, said even the slightest increase makes a difference for service members. Morrow thought he was going to have to dig into his own pocket this year for housing off post.
"Originally, I thought I was going to have to pay out of pocket, because my apartment came furnished and it cost more," Morrow said. "But because of the increase, I don't have to worry about that. Everything is going to be covered."
That increase is not just going to affect Fort Gordon service members, but soldiers and their families nationwide. The Department of Defense, though, said more than one factor goes into deciding housing allowance.
"On average, across the United States, the rates increased on average by 5 percent," said Lt. Commander Nathan Christensen, spokesman for the Department of Defense. "But it comes back to the area that you live in. It depends really on where you live."
BAH rates, he said, also go up with dependents. On average, a married soldier with kids will see $79 more per month. BAH rates for members without dependents will see an average of $76 more per month.
Not every installation is going to see an increase for 2014. Each year, the DOD reviews the BAH, but the increase depends on the need in the area.