Real Estate Blog by David Phillips, REALTOR

Home Ownership and Permanent Change of Station (PCS)

Home Ownership and Permanent Change of Station (PCS).

Members of the armed forces learn very early in their careers that being flexible is an important skill. When orders are handed down, they will be expected to cooperate and make adjustments quickly. One of the major adjustments that this group faces is called PCS or permanent change of station. Essentially, this is a relocation, and for those who own a home there can be quite a few complications. Here are a few simple solutions and tips that can make these change easier to handle.

Major Issues

The main issue with home ownership and PCS is something like this: You own a home and are forced to move somewhere new, where you must decide to rent, own or (if available) live in the barracks. This is complicated further by the following considerations:

  • How much equity do you have in the home?

  • How did you time the market when you purchased (can you sell the home for close to what you paid for it)?

  • How quickly can you sell the home?

  • If you rented the home, would rent cover your mortgage payment?

  • Do you have a family, and are they moving with you or staying in the home?

We certainly can’t talk through every single possibility here, but we can give some broad advice that will apply to most of these situations.

Moving when You have a Family

Moving without your family can be much more complicated and expensive. If you rent or own in the new location, you will essentially be running two households, which can be quite costly. Your best two options are typically to either move the family to...