“If the Army wanted you to have a family they would have issued you one!” It’s been a while since that phrase was in fashion, but if you do the math these days it might actually seem like the Army wants you to have a family. A BETTER PEACE welcomes Rachael Hoagland to look at the financial policies that actually incentivize Soldiers to get married, and at the same disadvantage single service members. Rachael joins podcast editor Ron Granieri to look at how the good intentions of the service to help provide for Army families unintentionally creates a pay/benefit gap that can lead to rash decisions. She proposes some solutions (don’t worry she’s not trying to take away money from married Soldiers) and lays out the cost to benefit ratio.

My married peers were able to keep their entitled amount of money for BAH and whatever other entitlements they were getting and that could have been upwards of my peer, same rank, doing the same job, taking on the same responsibilities, making about $3000 more on me than me a month tax free.

LTC Rachael Hoagland is a U.S. Army acquisition officer with 20 years of experience. She is a graduate of the AY21 Resident Class at the U.S. Army War College.

Ron Granieri is an Associate Professor of History at the U.S. Army War College and the Editor of A BETTER PEACE.

The views expressed in this presentation are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Army War College, U.S. Army, or Department of Defense.

Photo Credit: Emoji head courtesy of CLIPARTMAX

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  1. Clearly, this is a biased review of the BAH system from the perspective of someone who doesn’t understand how expensive it is to have and raise children coupled with the complexity of serving in the military. The examples used were extreme and not applicable to most. Also, single parents are hit the hardest in the pocketbook, but there was no mention of how that relates to the author’s thesis. The math comparison is weak and most likely exaggerated to meet the author’s agenda. A more unbiased approach to this research would have been a lot more interesting. I understand that the author thinks it’s unfair, but take a look at how expensive it is to be a single parent or even a married parent. The housing allowance difference is to make up for maintaining two households. There is also a waiver process if your single maintaining two households or one while deployed.

  2. You and your spouse can talk about anything and everything – except for dollars and cents! In addition to the emotional benefits of combining finances, it will also open up the lines of communication and facilitate your lives as a military couple.

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