When you’re a military member, a PCS, or permanent change of station, comes with the territory. At any given moment, you can be given a new assignment and sent off across the country (or even the world) to a completely new place.
But while it’s definitely an expected part of military life, that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Military members – especially those with a spouse, kids, pets or other dependents – can find it hard to leave their current base. They’ve formed bonds there, their spouses have jobs and hobbies, and their kids have schools they love. Add in that they’re being sent to a completely new and foreign place, and it can be pretty overwhelming to say the least.
Fortunately, if you’ve recently received a PCS to Randolph AFB (or any San Antonio base for that matter) you’re in luck, because we’re here to help ease the transition. Our expert agents have gathered up their best PCS house hunting tips for the San Antonio area and shared them here:
- Stick close – You don’t have to venture far to find a great home at a great price near Randolph AFB. Schertz, Converse, Universal City and Cibolo are all just a few minutes away – and they’re favorites with Randolph stationees. They boast good schools for the kids, plenty of dining, shopping and entertainment, and real estate options for every type of person and budget – even renters.
- Find an expert – Your best bet for finding a nearby property that fits your needs and your timeline is to enlist a local expert’s help. Contact an agent who specializes in the Randolph AFB area, and get them to guide you on your journey. Tell them what you’re looking for, your preferences, your budget and your moving dates, and have them start sending you potential properties. If you’re looking from far away (and are unable to come to San Antonio before your big move), your agent may even be able to tour homes on your behalf, sending you pictures and other details they picked up along the way. They can be your eyes and ears on the ground.
- Know your allowance – Know what sort of housing allowance you can expect at your new PCS, and use that to determine what price range to look in. You typically don’t want to use up your entire monthly allowance on your mortgage payment. After all, you will have additional costs like utilities, maintenance, repairs and other items that come along, so you’ll need to have a little extra wiggle room in the budget. You don’t want all that money accounted for should an emergency arise.
- Start looking right away – With a PCS, you’re typically working on a very tight timeline. You may have a month or even less to find your home, pack up your things and make your way to your new station. Because of this, it’s crucial you start your home search as soon as you’ve been notified of your PCS. Home purchases can take weeks or even months to finalize if you’re not careful, so you need to the ball rolling with a real estate agent ASAP.
- Have your paperwork organized – Having your financial documents and other paperwork ready and organized is another great way you can speed up the purchasing process. Instead of waiting until you find a home and apply with a lender, get those items ready now. Then, when that perfect home comes along, all you have to do is hit send and your application is on its way. It can shave weeks or the application process.
- Look for good investments – You don’t want to buy the cheapest home in the cheapest neighborhood just to find a home quick. Remember, you got that PCS with little notice, and you could get another one down the line, too. You don’t want to end up with a property that’s going to be hard to sell or that will depreciate over time. Carefully consider the homes you look at, and make sure you choose on-the-rise, in-demand neighborhoods that can will not only sell quickly, but also get you more bang for your buck a few years down the road.
Were you recently stationed at Randolph AFB? Need help making your PCS or finding the perfect home in the area? Contact the expert agents at The Claus Team today. We’ve helped hundreds of military buyers, and we can help you, too. Call us now to get started.