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Basic Allowance for Housing Overview

A yellow house

The military Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) is based on geographic duty location, pay grade, and dependency status. The intent of BAH is to provide uniformed servicemembers accurate and equitable housing compensation based on housing costs in local civilian housing markets, and is payable when government quarters are not provided. Visit our BAH Rates page for up-to-date information.

A member assigned to permanent duty within the 50 United States, who is not furnished Government housing, is eligible for BAH, based on the member's rank, dependency status, and permanent duty station ZIP code.  A member stationed overseas (except in Hawaii and Alaska), including U.S. territories and possessions, who is not furnished Government housing, is eligible for an Overseas Housing Allowance (OHA) based on the member's dependency status.

The military BAH rate is also used to determine the monthly housing stipend for the Post-9/11 GI Bill.

BAH Differential (BAH-DIFF) is the housing allowance amount for a member who is assigned to single-type quarters and who is authorized a BAH solely by reason of the member's payment of child support.  A member is not authorized BAH-DIFF if the monthly rate of that child support is less than the BAH-DIFF amount.  The BAH-DIFF amounts, originally calculated in 1997, are updated annually based on changes in the Basic Pay tables.  For more information see our BAH-DIFF page.

Basic Allowance for Housing Reserve Component/Transient (BAH for RC/Transient) is the housing allowance for members in particular circumstances, for example, reservists on active duty less than 30 days. It does not vary by geographic location. BAH RC/Transient is set based on the national average for housing. BAH is published annually and is determined by increasing the previous year's table by the percentage growth of housing costs. For more information see our BAH Reserve Component page.