2012 BAH (Basic Allowance for Housing) Rates

2012 BAH (Basic Allowance for Housing) Rates

Each year the military determines that Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) Rates for military members and their families. Updated rate charts are released between December 15and January 1 each year. Rates are calculated by pay grade, zip code and dependency. See the BAH calculator below to determine your current Basic Allowance for Housing.

BAH Component Breakdown

  • Rent
    The amount of rent included as part of the Basic Allowance for Housing is calculated based on the median current market rent. For most locations, rent makes up approximately 70 to 80 percent of the BAH rate. In states such as California and Colorado where the median rent is higher, it makes up a larger percentage of the BAH rate.
  • Utilities
    Utilities make up approximately 25 percent of your BAH rate. The average utility amounts figured into the BAH rates include water/sewer, electricity and heat. Other utilities such as phone, cable and Internet services are not included in the BAH rate calculation.
  • Renters Insurance
    For all locations, the amount of renters insurance is between one and three percent of the total BAH rate. The exact amount allocated for renter’s insurance is based on the average insurance rates for the area. If you receive quotes for renter’s insurance from multiple companies, you may be able to get rates well below the area’s average.

Download a copy of the Defense Travel Management Office’s complete 2012 Basic Allowance for Housing Component Breakdown chart.

Individual Rate Protection

While the average Basic Allowance for Housing Rate rose two percent in 2012, a few areas saw a decline in BAH rates. Because the Basic Allowance for Housing rates are calculated based on area averages, regular drops are possible. Individual Rate Protection ensures that while rates may go down for a given area, individual service members and their family will not face a reduction in rates. While new service members and those who relocate to an area with a rate decrease will receive the lower BAH rate, other service members will continue to receive the same rate.

Other Important BAH Rate Information

Since 2008, the Basic Allowance for Housing Rates have been designed to eliminate most out-of-pocket expenses for service members. However, BAH rates do not guarantee that they will cover all expenses. Service members and their families still control which properties they choose to rent and, therefore, may choose to rent a property priced well above or significantly the BAH rates for their area. In addition, since BAH Rates are based on duty location, you may find that they are inaccurate if you choose to reside in another location.

*** The 2013 BAH rates have been announced.  Click here for more information.

Basic Allowance for Housing Calculator