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Zxc
06-24-2014, 09:34 PM
Curious question after a random discussion today...

Can a military member live full-time in an RV or Motorhome, assuming its legally parked? (RV park, campground, trailer park, etc). If so, are they still entitled to BAH? Is it considered an address?

I've known Airman that lived in their vehicles or slept at homeless shelters trying to pocket BAH, and they got caught. What about RV living like many retired folk do?

Has anyone ever done it, heard of it, or know anyone who has?

ttribe
06-24-2014, 09:57 PM
Swing by any RV camp on base or nearby, and you will find at least one mil member living in his trailer or RV. We just had one retire recently. Lived in the family camp for a few years here.

UH1FE
06-24-2014, 11:01 PM
Perfectly legit. They can't ding you for it just look up tiny homes on google basically the same thing. Most fam camps make you move every 30 days though. A couple guys I know use them to have 3-6 months to find a real home when they PCS.

BENDER56
06-25-2014, 12:03 AM
Knew an active duty Chief who spent his entire tour at Base X living out of his motorhome. His wife (also a Chief) and kids lived in their house at Base Y.

Made sense to me.

LogDog
06-25-2014, 12:32 AM
Curious question after a random discussion today...

Can a military member live full-time in an RV or Motorhome, assuming its legally parked? (RV park, campground, trailer park, etc). If so, are they still entitled to BAH? Is it considered an address?

I've known Airman that lived in their vehicles or slept at homeless shelters trying to pocket BAH, and they got caught. What about RV living like many retired folk do?

Has anyone ever done it, heard of it, or know anyone who has?
I'd say yes. How much different is it than living in a mobile home? I had one SSgt who lived in a "Third-Wheel" motor home.

I live next to a retired Navy Captain and his last assignment he left his family here and went to his next base for two years and he bought/lived-in an RV for his two-year assignment.

sandsjames
06-25-2014, 12:32 AM
Have heard of quite a few. Easy way to bank a lot of BAH. I guess if you like money more than you like comfort it's not a bad choice.

Measure Man
06-25-2014, 01:00 AM
I'd say yes. How much different is it than living in a mobile home? I had one SSgt who lived in a "Third-Wheel" motor home.

Third wheel? LOL. Is that like living with your friend and his wife?

hustonj
06-25-2014, 03:17 PM
Knew an active duty Chief who spent his entire tour at Base X living out of his motorhome. His wife (also a Chief) and kids lived in their house at Base Y.

Made sense to me.


Ding, ding, ding!

I, too, have known a Chief that did this. Edit: Except I don't think he was happily married . . ..

It was funny at the unit picnic-type events, since his trailer was right next to the base lake shelter used to host them!

sandsjames
06-25-2014, 06:40 PM
You can take the white trash out of the trailer park but you can't take the trailer park out of the white trash.

Zxc
06-25-2014, 06:54 PM
I only thought about it in passing since its a great idea in some locations and near impossible in others. That being said nearly everywhere has strict limits on how long you can stay so I'm not sure how people pull it off, especially seeing the ones that are doing it in places that clearly define those limits.

Zxc
06-25-2014, 07:51 PM
I appreciate the forum moderators who moved this thread ensuring a swift halt to any further discussion. Much thanks!

hustonj
06-25-2014, 08:35 PM
I only thought about it in passing since its a great idea in some locations and near impossible in others. That being said nearly everywhere has strict limits on how long you can stay so I'm not sure how people pull it off, especially seeing the ones that are doing it in places that clearly define those limits.


Clearly defined limits for use of PAID SPACE are based on being able to make space available to new or additional customers. Somebody who's trying to make money is not going to enforce a maximum stay limit if they have empty slots. No reason to stop income without replacement readily available!

And the guy I was remembering was at Offutt AFB/Omaha, NE. There were (a very few) mornings where I would get up to go to work and the ambient temperature was in the single digits (whether positive or negative) with a 30 mile an hour wind. I'm thinking a small metal trailer was a pretty bad place to be living in that weather!

garhkal
06-25-2014, 08:46 PM
You can take the white trash out of the trailer park but you can't take the trailer park out of the white trash.

Of five Enlisted folk i knew who lived on Gulfport's mobile home area, three were white, and 2 latino. So i wouldn't automatically say all are white trash.

sandsjames
06-25-2014, 08:58 PM
Of five Enlisted folk i knew who lived on Gulfport's mobile home area, three were white, and 2 latino. So i wouldn't automatically say all are white trash.

Please allow me a random generalization about white people, please. If we don't have that, what do we have?

Measure Man
06-25-2014, 09:09 PM
There used to be a mobile home park on Edwards AFB...and I'm sure several others. It was pretty nice, people maintained their yards and stuff...kid friendly.

In the early to mid 2000s, the AF ordered all mobile home parks closed...saying that mobile homes were not adequate housing, or something like that. Oh, you could still live in them, just not on base.

These were really a great thing for some people...first, at Edwards the drive just to get off base is like 20 miles...so you save a small fortune in gas by living on base. Okay, so the residents owned the mobile home and paid a small rental fee each month for the lot, which I believe included utilities, but you still got full BAH since you were not in housing. The mobile homes ranged anywhere from total pieces of crap that had to be destroyed when the park closed because they could not longer be moved...to super nice triple wides that were like $100K. People leaving could sell them to other military members in place...I had considered buying one and looked at several, but in the end opted to buy a house instead.

I knew one couple that lived in there, was a CMSgt married to a MSgt...both drawing full BAH and banking a ton of money...and their trailer was actually pretty nice.

Unfortunately for the average single guy living in there, when they closed the park they were forced to move their mobile home...and ended up living in some meth-haven mobile home park off-base that was far less adequate than living on-base. Or they sold it or trashed it and had to move into a more expensive off-base apartment that sucked far worse than having their own little pad on-base.

garhkal
06-26-2014, 05:58 AM
Of the bases i have been on (navy mind you) i remember a nice trailer park area of both Mayport and Norfolk. Gulfport also had one, but i never remembered seeing one in Guam when i was on the Frank Cable.

Chief_KO
06-26-2014, 01:09 PM
In the early to mid 2000s, the AF ordered all mobile home parks closed...saying that mobile homes were not adequate housing, or something like that. Oh, you could still live in them, just not on base.

I think AF closed them cause of "the image" of a trailer park. The one I saw were nice, well maintained (same standards as base housing) and allowed for more freedoms than housing, but the security of living on base.
Keesler's was near the golf course, around 20 or so homes at its peak. Robins had one near the training area used by the 5th Combat Comm Gp. During one exercise, the winds blew the tear gas into the trailer park.
At Ft Meade, our first sgt (& wife) lived in camper in the Fam Camp.

Measure Man
06-26-2014, 04:10 PM
I think AF closed them cause of "the image" of a trailer park.

Yep...somebody up the chain had a stereotypical idea of "trailer park"...and that "we" should do better by our people. The thing is, all the people living in there were doing so because they wanted to and they loved it.

BENDER56
06-26-2014, 06:37 PM
Yep...somebody up the chain had a stereotypical idea of "trailer park"...and that "we" should do better by our people. The thing is, all the people living in there were doing so because they wanted to and they loved it.

I remember when that happened and it caused some serious hardship for the troops who lived in them.

The troops who lived there owned the trailer. The way it worked was, before they PCSed out, they'd sell it to a new buyer. Kinda like a beater car overseas -- you bought one when you got there and sold it to someone else when you left. (FYI, the trailer parks were not the same as a base's RV park -- two separate things.)

When they announced the closure of the trailer parks, the current occupants were left holding the bag. For them, there would be no incoming buyer to take it off their hands, and what's worse, they had to pay to move their trailer off base.

I can't recall for sure, but I think the AF allowed the last occupants to get some TMO money, but overall it was a CF.

I blame Obama.

garhkal
06-26-2014, 07:54 PM
I remember when that happened and it caused some serious hardship for the troops who lived in them.

The troops who lived there owned the trailer. The way it worked was, before they PCSed out, they'd sell it to a new buyer. Kinda like a beater car overseas -- you bought one when you got there and sold it to someone else when you left. (FYI, the trailer parks were not the same as a base's RV park -- two separate things.)

When they announced the closure of the trailer parks, the current occupants were left holding the bag. For them, there would be no incoming buyer to take it off their hands, and what's worse, they had to pay to move their trailer off base.

I can't recall for sure, but I think the AF allowed the last occupants to get some TMO money, but overall it was a CF.

I blame Obama.

Sucks to have been in the AF then at that locale.

SomeRandomGuy
06-26-2014, 08:25 PM
There used to be a mobile home park on Edwards AFB...and I'm sure several others. It was pretty nice, people maintained their yards and stuff...kid friendly.

In the early to mid 2000s, the AF ordered all mobile home parks closed...saying that mobile homes were not adequate housing, or something like that. Oh, you could still live in them, just not on base.

These were really a great thing for some people...first, at Edwards the drive just to get off base is like 20 miles...so you save a small fortune in gas by living on base. Okay, so the residents owned the mobile home and paid a small rental fee each month for the lot, which I believe included utilities, but you still got full BAH since you were not in housing. The mobile homes ranged anywhere from total pieces of crap that had to be destroyed when the park closed because they could not longer be moved...to super nice triple wides that were like $100K. People leaving could sell them to other military members in place...I had considered buying one and looked at several, but in the end opted to buy a house instead.

I knew one couple that lived in there, was a CMSgt married to a MSgt...both drawing full BAH and banking a ton of money...and their trailer was actually pretty nice.

Unfortunately for the average single guy living in there, when they closed the park they were forced to move their mobile home...and ended up living in some meth-haven mobile home park off-base that was far less adequate than living on-base. Or they sold it or trashed it and had to move into a more expensive off-base apartment that sucked far worse than having their own little pad on-base.

What a mess that was when Edwards closed that trailer park. In 2010 I was trying to help a Lt. Col get a claim paid from it. When he filed his original claim TMO/finance disallowed fess for moving his decks and also for new skirting and a few other things. He filed a DOHA claim (Defense Office of Hearings and Appeals) several years later and they ruled in his favor. The problem was Edwards didn't have any more money budgeted to pay the claim.

I read through his appeal and I definitly agreed with his side of the story. When he tried to move the mobile home there was an influx of mobile homes being moved. If you didn't want to move to a "meth haven" you needed to make your mobile look nice to meet park standards which also increased due to demand. When he made the necessary changes TMO/Finance disallowed them as upgrades whereas he contended they were required in order to move the home. Huge pain in the ass and I get the feeling he wasn't the only one who got screwed. He was just the only person left still fighting the battle like 6 years later.

TO THE OP: Othe branches seem to have weird requirements for getting BAH. The Air Force doesn't though. If you are not assigned government quarters and are entitled to basic pay then you are entitled to BAH. It doesn't matter where or how you live. It's your money you are free to do whatever you want. The only issue I can think of is an overbearing commander could order someone into the dorms for reasons of "military necessity" if they didn't feel your living arrangements were safe/responsible.

CYBERFX1024
06-26-2014, 09:05 PM
The Marine Corps had a trailer park down at Parris Island for a long time. I went through there in 2002 and they had it there. But when I got stationed there in 2006 they had done away with it due to a Marine Corps initiative to do away with them. The bad thing was that they didn't do anything with that space at all and it was an eye sore. The funny thing was that there was only one trailer there for the longest time until I guess they moved or got out.
There was talk about making that a visitor RV park for when families come to see their son/daughter graduate from boot camp but nothing came about from it.

sandsjames
06-26-2014, 09:07 PM
I remember when that happened and it caused some serious hardship for the troops who lived in them.

The troops who lived there owned the trailer. The way it worked was, before they PCSed out, they'd sell it to a new buyer. Kinda like a beater car overseas -- you bought one when you got there and sold it to someone else when you left. (FYI, the trailer parks were not the same as a base's RV park -- two separate things.)

When they announced the closure of the trailer parks, the current occupants were left holding the bag. For them, there would be no incoming buyer to take it off their hands, and what's worse, they had to pay to move their trailer off base.

I can't recall for sure, but I think the AF allowed the last occupants to get some TMO money, but overall it was a CF.

I blame Obama.

This one time, I bought a house at a location I was stationed. Then, after a few years the bastards told me I had to PCS. The gall. So I could either sell the house or bite the bullet and lose money renting it out to someone.

The housing market was very bad (which is even more reason why I shouldn't have had to PCS) so we were unable to sell, so we rented it out. Lost about $200 a month for 4 years. TMO didn't reimburse ONE FREAKIN' CENT!!!!

Can you believe it??!!!! I made a choice to purchase a home and knew the consequences of the possible outcomes and STILL they didn't give me the money back. It's almost like the military expects people to act like responsible adults...the bastards.

Measure Man
06-26-2014, 09:13 PM
This one time, I bought a house at a location I was stationed. Then, after a few years the bastards told me I had to PCS. The gall. So I could either sell the house or bite the bullet and lose money renting it out to someone.

The housing market was very bad (which is even more reason why I shouldn't have had to PCS) so we were unable to sell, so we rented it out. Lost about $200 a month for 4 years. TMO didn't reimburse ONE FREAKIN' CENT!!!!

Can you believe it??!!!! I made a choice to purchase a home and knew the consequences of the possible outcomes and STILL they didn't give me the money back. It's almost like the military expects people to act like responsible adults...the bastards.

Entirely different scenario than when they change the rules on you...

sandsjames
06-26-2014, 09:19 PM
Entirely different scenario than when they change the rules on you...


There was this one time when I didn't have to mow my lawn on base because it was privatized and the contractors took care of it. Then, it went back to base housing and I had to start mowing my lawn again. They didn't even provide me with a lawnmower...the bastards!!!

Measure Man
06-26-2014, 09:48 PM
There was this one time when I didn't have to mow my lawn on base because it was privatized and the contractors took care of it. Then, it went back to base housing and I had to start mowing my lawn again. They didn't even provide me with a lawnmower...the bastards!!!

I don't get the relevance.

More like, one time you decided to buy a home. You looked at the risks and rewards and decided you'd take the chance...knowing you had a fairly good chance of selling it, but if you didn't, it was a highly desirable rental by a military base.

Then you got orders to PCS...but then the AF passed a new AFI that said military members could not sell or rent a home to other military members...because the business relationship was potentially tainted by the military ranks involved. So, this effectively eliminated your market.

yes, you're holding the bag...yes, it was a decision you made...but it sucks.

The military members bought those mobile homes assuming they'd be allowed to sell them in place as had been done for dozens of years...and they were pretty easy to sell!! Then the rules changed...

sandsjames
06-26-2014, 10:43 PM
I don't get the relevance.

More like, one time you decided to buy a home. You looked at the risks and rewards and decided you'd take the chance...knowing you had a fairly good chance of selling it, but if you didn't, it was a highly desirable rental by a military base.

Then you got orders to PCS...but then the AF passed a new AFI that said military members could not sell or rent a home to other military members...because the business relationship was potentially tainted by the military ranks involved. So, this effectively eliminated your market.

yes, you're holding the bag...yes, it was a decision you made...but it sucks.

The military members bought those mobile homes assuming they'd be allowed to sell them in place as had been done for dozens of years...and they were pretty easy to sell!! Then the rules changed...

I wasn't aware that selling these mobile homes was restricted to buyers on base. I'm sure they could have advertised the home and sold it to a civilian as well.

I joined the Air Force assuming that I wouldn't be deploying to combat locations and that I would only be away from my family, at most, for 90 days. You know what? The rules changed.

I joined the Air Force assuming that I'd never have to do anything more physical than riding a stationary bike once a year. Then the rules changed.

I guess I'm failing to see what the complaint is. I realize that everyone figures that if they are inconvenienced then they are owed something. Those are the times we are living in.

The only thing to assume in the military is that shit is going to change and you're going to get screwed.

Measure Man
06-26-2014, 10:50 PM
I wasn't aware that selling these mobile homes was restricted to buyers on base. I'm sure they could have advertised the home and sold it to a civilian as well.


They were located on base. They could only be sold IN PLACE to another military member. Yes, they could be moved and sold, of course, but the location was a big reason why people wanted them.

It costs thousands to move a mobile home...


I joined the Air Force assuming that I wouldn't be deploying to combat locations and that I would only be away from my family, at most, for 90 days. You know what? The rules changed.

I joined the Air Force assuming that I'd never have to do anything more physical than riding a stationary bike once a year. Then the rules changed.

I guess I'm failing to see what the complaint is. I realize that everyone figures that if they are inconvenienced then they are owed something. Those are the times we are living in.

The only thing to assume in the military is that shit is going to change and you're going to get screwed.

Yeah...so these guys got screwed. It's their right to complain about it.

sandsjames
06-26-2014, 11:04 PM
They were located on base. They could only be sold IN PLACE to another military member. Yes, they could be moved and sold, of course, but the location was a big reason why people wanted them.

It costs thousands to move a mobile home... I'm sure they saved plenty of money spending $50 a month while getting $2k in BAH. I'm sure they'll be ok.




Yeah...so these guys got screwed. It's their right to complain about it.

Not saying they can't complain about it. My issue was the comment about them getting reimbursed...and disagree that they got screwed.