Base Housing Nightmares!

By Carla Olivo, Marine Spouse

October is the month for scarecrows, zombies, monsters, and witches. A good ghost story or a horror movie might keep you awake at night. For some, issues with their base housing rental are enough to cause a sleepless night. While there are plenty who love the safety, security, convenience, and comfort of living on post, there are others that say living in military housing is the stuff of nightmares!

Interesting Reading!

Since PCSgrades opened the Base Housing Review platform, we have been pleasantly surprised, sometimes entertained, and on a few occasions downright scared by reviews left by our fellow military families.

Unfortunately, not every base housing experience is a positive one. One Air Force spouse says a serious mold and moisture problem at an Air Force Base in San Antonio was a living nightmare. “Our oldest child developed asthma and our younger two had pneumonia and chronic sinus and ear infections.”

An Army spouse with two PCSes under her belt says the age of the housing at their Post is the main problem there. “These houses are falling apart at the seams and need to be torn down. Any issue isn’t actually fixed but covered up.’

 Yea and Nay!

Then there are those reviews that deliver both the good and the bad news. An Army spouse living in housing at a Texas Air Force Base says the housing company does not maintain jogging trails as advertised. “But the low traffic flow allows for walking/jogging on roads. “

A Marine spouse with 3 PCSes who lives on base in California, says that maintenance is really good about being on time and fixing issues for the most part. She goes on to say, “It is a nice area to live in, but not as nice as other housing in the area. Very close to the commissary, MCX, and main gate.”

Vintage is all the Rage!

Some do not mind living in older housing. An Army spouse on Post in Texas says, “It might look old on the outside, but the inside of the houses is nice. And there is a lot of storage and closets!” An Army spouse renting military housing in North Carolina says she is very happy, “I love how spacious the houses are.”

Arm Yourself with all the Base Housing Info You Need!

One great thing about the Base Housing Reviews at PCSgrades.com is the ability to compare reviews for the same housing location. Sometimes, it’s easy to spot a trend for certain housing areas. Other times all you need to know is written in a single review. A Marine Corps spouse living on base in North Carolina says living there was a nightmare. “Immediately upon moving in, we could smell mildew. We asked them to look into it, and they claimed it was taken care of. A few months in, a brown spot started forming on the ceiling of the upstairs bathroom.” The family had to relocate after living with black mold for the better part of a year.

Another Army spouse living on post in Texas says, “If anyone is PCS’ing here LIVE OFF POST!” This family reports a problem with bugs, peeling paint, and a leaking roof! “I don’t know why they call this “The Great Place” because it’s anything but!”

Did we mention our reviews can sometimes be very entertaining?

But seriously, while none of these issues is anything to laugh about. We believe that chronicling the good and not so good sides of base housing creates more transparency in the renting process. And it will ultimately encourage stronger relationships between military families and base housing management companies.

Whether a review sings praises or howls something else, the information and knowledge are here to help you decide the best place for your family to live the next time duty calls. Check out PCSgrades for all the info you need or post your own review to help or even “warn” your fellow military families!

Author: Carla Olivo, PCSgrades Strategic Communications Director, previously served as the Director of Communications for Operation Hug-A-Hero and as the Media/Community Relations Officer for the Delaware Department of Transportation. She has garnered numerous TV industry awards including the Associated Press award for Spot News Reporting, News Writing, and Documentary Reporting. She lives in Northern Virginia with her husband, a retired USMC Lt. Colonel, their two children. You can follow her on Twitter @olivowriter.

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