How to Save Money During a PCS
Whether you know from experience or statistics, it’s no secret that moving is stressful. According to PR Newswire, 58% of Americans view a move as more stressful than planning for a wedding. If you have children, it’s averaged to take eight days longer to move, which could mean eight more days of arguments. 31% of cohabitating Americans experienced some of their worst arguments during a move.
Now let’s take into consideration how often military families move. It’s estimated that a typical military family will experience a move every two to four years. That adds up to a significant amount of stress, as well as a large impact on finances.
Planning for a PCS
The sooner a PCS can be prepared for, the better. By planning ahead, you can reduce your risk of facing financial troubles and may even make money off the move. Here are some tips to help you prepare for a PCS:
- Prepare a budget to evaluate expenses and status of accounts
- Set aside money for a PCS fund
- Get organized by creating a system of checklists
Saving Money During a PCS
Once your next base has been confirmed, it’s important to educate yourself on the options available to you. There are two types of moves: Do It Yourself Move (DITY) or letting the Transportation Management Office (TMO) handle it. Although a DITY move can be more stressful, it does offer you the opportunity to make a little extra cash if handled appropriately. A reimbursement of 95% of what the government would have paid if they had moved you, will be given based on factors such as pay grade, dependents, and weight allowance.
Here are five tips to further help you save money:
- Stay with friends and/or family along the way
- Pack lunch and snacks for the drive instead of always stopping for fast food
- Use military discounts for expenses such as hotel stays, storage, and truck rentals
- Take advantage of apps and websites that will save you money and/or offer rebates (Ebates, Ibotta, Checkout51, etc.)
- Research the cheapest utilities, TV, Internet, and phone services in your new city
While moving can be stressful and expensive, we hope that by putting this financial advice to use, you will be able to save money and be prepared for your next big adventure.