You’ve just received your Permanent Change of Station (PCS) orders. What do you do now? Moving is always an adventure, and it’s one that members of the military tend to embark on frequently. To increase the odds that your next adventure runs smoothly, it’s time to think about the things to do to prepare for a PCS move.
Things to Do to Prepare for a PCS Move
When it comes to prepping for a PCS move, we encourage you to be proactive. Whether your move is across the state, across the country, or to an entirely new country, it’s wise to start preparing immediately. After all, you have a limited amount of time and lots of things to do to prepare for a PCS move.
Explore the Resources Available to You
Military.com suggests that you start your preparations by exploring the various resources available to you. Pay a visit to your base transportation office to find out about your options. Decide whether you intend to let the military move you or prefer to handle everything yourself with a Personally Procured Move. You’ll also want to schedule an appointment with your base’s financial office. Moving is disruptive and expensive, so it’s worth investigating any relocation benefits for which you might be eligible. Wondering what your new location offers? Contact the family center at your new station for information about the community.
Create a PCS Binder
With all the commotion that is inherent in packing up and moving, it’s vital that you gather important documentation for your family, including your pets, and keep it safe and accessible. Creating a PCS binder is an ideal way to do this. Gather important papers like your orders, birth certificates, medical records, financial information, legal papers, and copies of licenses and identification. Store everything neatly in a binder along with important information about your move. Don’t entrust this binder to the movers. Keep it with you from start to finish.
Think About the Entire Family’s Needs
Do you have children and pets? Don’t forget them as you make your plans. Before the move, make sure that they’ll have what they need to make the journey safely and take time to prepare them for what lies ahead. Moving days are stressful enough for adults, so it’s incredibly helpful to make plans for your children or pets to be entertained elsewhere while you deal with the craziness. Whether you pay for care or arrange a playdate, they’ll be spared the distress of seeing their belongings disappear into the back of a truck, and you’ll be able to concentrate without worrying about them being underfoot.
Figure Out Your Current Housing Situation
What do you need to do about your current housing? If you’re living in government housing or renting, then you’ll need to notify those in charge and make arrangements to leave. If you own your home, it’s a bit more challenging. You have a few different options to consider. Should you sell your home or keep it? Would it make a good rental property? What if you have a VA loan? How will all this affect your financial situation and your housing options at your new location? Identifying and evaluating your options can be complicated, so it’s best to schedule an appointment with a lender who has experience working with VA loans and PCS moves. These knowledgeable professionals can offer the information that you need to feel confident about your decisions.
Make Arrangements for New Housing
Where will you live when you arrive at your new station? If you plan to live in government housing, you’ll need to get on the list as soon as possible. If you opt for civilian housing, the information that you received from the family center at your new station can help you identify desirable locations. Are you interesting in buying a home for your family? With a VA loan, you’ll enjoy favorable terms and won’t have to worry about a down payment, private mortgage insurance, or penalties for paying the loan off early. You don’t have to be a first-time homebuyer to qualify, and the benefit is reusable. In fact, thanks to your second-tier entitlement, you may be able to have more than one VA loan. Are you curious about what you qualify for? Consult a lender who is familiar with VA loans to find out.
At PrimeLending: Manhattan, Kansas, we’re committed to serving those who serve. We understand that your list of things to do to prepare for a PCS move is lengthy, and we’re ready to help by providing you with the information and assistance you need to make smart decisions about your housing situation. Every year, we help thousands of veterans and active-duty members of the military buy or refinance their homes through the VA home loan program. Schedule an appointment, and take advantage of our PCS with Me program. To learn more, please give us a call at 785-560-3011 or contact us online. It’s our turn to serve you!