Quantico Housing - Living On-Base vs. Living Off-Base
If you’ve just been stationed at Quantico, one of the first things you’ll need to do is find housing. While Quantico offers on-base housing options, many people opt to live off-base instead. The wait list for on-base housing can be very long, which means that it isn’t an option for everyone stationed at Quantico. There are advantages and disadvantages to both options, so ultimately you will need to decide which option is best for your needs. At V Star Real Estate, we help our clients find amazing properties in the northern Virginia area. Here’s what you need to know about Quantico housing - living on-base vs. living off-base.
Advantages of Living On-Base
One of the biggest advantages of living on-base at Quantico is the number of amenities that you’ll have easy access to. Everyone stationed at Quantico has access to most of these amenities, but when you live on base, you’ll have them right there in your community.
In terms of essentials, Quantico has a commissary (grocery store), library, post office, and barber shop. There are also two schools for children living on base at Quantico - one for elementary school students and one for middle and high school students.
Additionally, there are plenty of recreational amenities on base at Quantico. There is a community gym and pool, as well as outdoor basketball and tennis courts, running trails, and parks. The Medal of Honor Golf Course and adjoining restaurant is also located on-base.
For some members of the military, living on base is the most affordable option. Military housing is designed to be affordable. All members get a housing allowance that covers the cost of rent and utility bills.
When you live on base, you have the advantage of a built-in community right in your neighborhood. There are plenty of events on base where you can meet your neighbors. Many people who live on base really value community and work to create a welcoming and supportive environment.
Disadvantages of Living On-Base
Lack of Availability
The biggest disadvantage of on-base housing is that there simply isn’t enough for everyone. The waiting list for on-base housing is incredibly long, which means that many people won’t have access to it. Depending on which community you’re looking at, you could wait months or even years for housing on base at Quantico.
Only Rentals Available
Another downside of living on base is that you don’t have the option to own your home. Owning a home helps you build financial equity over time, and you won’t be able to do that when you’re living in an on-base rental. When you’re renting your home, you’re also limited in terms of the renovations and changes you can make to your home.
Advantages of Living Off-Base
The biggest advantage of living off base is that you have much more choice when it comes to where you want to live. You can decide exactly what type of property you want, whether it’s a cozy townhome in an urban area or a large five-bedroom house on the water.
You also have the option to buy your home if that is something you would prefer. When you purchase your own home, you’re working towards eventual financial independence and building equity. If you end up deployed somewhere else, you can rent out your home and use it as a source of passive income. You can also make the renovations that you want - you aren’t limited to rental restrictions.
Another huge advantage of living off-base is that you can find a property with more space and privacy. There are many quiet suburban and rural towns near Quantico where you can find homes with large yards and plenty of foliage. While some homes on base do come with yards, they are generally small and your property will be relatively close to your neighbors.
Access to More Shopping, Dining, and Entertainment
While there are plenty of great amenities on-base, it’s hard to beat all of the amazing things to do in the northern Virginia area. If living near great shopping and dining is a priority for you, there are plenty of towns near Quantico where you can have these things right in your backyard. You can also opt to live closer to Washington D.C. if you prefer a more urban vibe.
Disadvantages of Living Off-Base
The biggest disadvantage to living off-base is that you will have a longer commute in the morning. Traffic in northern Virginia can get very congested during rush hour, so it’s important to account for this while looking for a new home.
Cost of Living
The other major disadvantage of living off base at Quantico is that it can be more expensive than living on base. While you’ll still get a housing allowance from the military, it might not be enough to cover all of your monthly housing expenses. The Washington D.C. area has a very high cost of living in general, so food, gas, and other essentials can also get expensive very quickly.
If you’re on a budget and need to live near Quantico, the best option is to look for towns south of base like Stafford and Fredericksburg. In general, housing costs start to go down as you move south of Washington D.C.
There are plenty of advantages to living both on-base and off-base at Quantico. We can offer even more information about Quantico housing - living on-base vs. living off-base. And, if you’re looking for housing near Quantico, be sure to check out all of the latest listings in this area on our website.