BAH Calculator



BAH is based on factors such as location, pay grade, and the number of dependents a service member has. The numbers are calculated using the average living expenses of approximately 300 Military Housing Areas (MHA). The government accounts for varying home types and sizes in its calculations to accommodate various ranks and family sizes to appropriately meet each family’s needs.
Your BAH isn’t intended to cover 100% of your housing expenses—95% is more accurate. That leaves the remaining 5% coming from the remainder of your paycheck. Depending on where you live, you might find that 5% equates to several hundred dollars—a crucial thing to keep in mind as you start drafting your budget to stay within your new BAH rate. test

BAH Calculator

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible to receive BAH?

What happens if my BAH goes down?

Do I receive BAH if I live on a military base?


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2024 Military BAH Rate

Basic Allowance For Housing | BAH Calculator

**Understanding Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) for Military Families**

The Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) is a critical financial benefit provided to eligible members of the United States military. This allowance is designed to support military families in securing quality housing while serving on active duty. BAH plays a significant role in the overall compensation package offered to service members and is a key factor in ensuring the welfare of military families.

**Purpose of BAH:**

The primary objective of BAH is to provide uniformed service members equitable housing compensation based on housing costs in local civilian housing markets, and it is payable when the government does not provide for quarters. This allowance is intended to cover the cost of renting or owning a home and varies according to geographic duty location, pay grade, and dependency status.

**Determining BAH Rates:**

BAH rates are set by surveying the cost of rental properties in each geographic location, ensuring that allowances align with the current housing market. This means that military families stationed in areas with higher costs of living receive a greater BAH to afford comparable housing. The Department of Defense annually reviews and adjusts BAH rates to accommodate fluctuations in the housing market and cost of living.

**Components of BAH:**

BAH consists of two main components: the renter's portion and the utility/recurring maintenance expenses. The renter's portion represents the average monthly rent for various types of housing corresponding to the service member's pay grade and dependency status. The utility/recurring maintenance expenses cover average utilities (electricity, heat, water/sewer) and routine maintenance expenses.

**Eligibility and Payment:**

Eligibility for BAH is determined by a member's pay grade, geographic duty location, and whether they have dependents. BAH payments are made directly to service members typically on a monthly basis, allowing them to manage their household budget effectively. In cases where a service member is assigned to a permanent duty station but their dependents reside in a different location, BAH may be based on the dependent's location, known as BAH Differential (BAH-DIFF).

**Impact on Military Families:**

For military families, BAH provides a stable foundation to secure comfortable and safe living conditions, which can greatly enhance their quality of life. This allowance enables families to live off-base in civilian communities or on-base in privatized housing. As a result, military families can integrate into local communities and have greater control over their living environment.


The Basic Allowance for Housing is an essential benefit for service members and their families, allowing them to maintain a standard of living consistent with civilian counterparts. By adjusting for cost of living and providing financial support for housing, BAH helps to alleviate one of the major stressors associated with military life—finding and funding adequate housing. As military families frequently relocate, understanding and effectively utilizing BAH is crucial for their financial stability and overall well-being.