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United States Army
ACS Financial Readiness Program
Fort Rucker, AL 36362
Resources are available to help you understand and manage your finances, including one-on-one financial counseling to assist you and your family with financial readiness. Services are designed to focus on money management issues throughout your active-duty lifecycle and into retirement. Financial readiness educational opportunities range from basic planning to long-term investing. Check out the information below to see what’s available at your installation.
Advance Pay -- Soldiers are advised not to take or spend advance pay unless it is absolutely essential. Advance pay will be deducted monthly from your pay going forward. This means you will have less to live on every month until it's paid back in full. Soldiers are advised not to take advance pay to purchase a stereo or car or something you just want. Be even more cautious of considering casual pay.
Dislocation Allowance -- This money is paid at a fixed rate for each grade. You can request an advance of your DLA before departing your old permanent duty station if your dependents are traveling with you. This is paid at 80% of the entitlement. The remainder of the entitlement will be paid when you inprocess into your new PDS. You can also wait until you arrive at your new duty station to claim DLA.
Travel Pay – These funds are based on the distance from your old PDS to your new PDS and can be requested prior to departure from the old PDS.
Per Diem -- Payment of service members permanent change of station per diem varies depending on the mode of transportation. A service member traveling in a privately-owned vehicle receives a mileage rate in lieu of transportation as well as the standard continental U.S. per diem rate. Per diem for commercial travel by air, train, ship or bus is reimbursed using the traditional Lodgings-Plus rate for the new PDS or the rate at any delay point where the service member stops overnight. Per diem for a service member’s spouse, or dependent(s), is reimbursed at a fraction of the per diem rate. See joint travel regulations paragraph 050303 for information regarding PCS per diem for dependents. See JTR section 0503 for more detailed information on PCS travel per diem for service members and their dependent(s).
Mileage Rates -- Soldiers receive 20 cents per mile for official distance from the old PDS to the new PDS. There is a two-vehicle limit with a maximum pay of 40 cents per mile.
Your local transportation office must approve a do it yourself move.
The Financial Readiness Program provides the tools to develop skills for healthy money management as well as making informed decisions with finances and as a consumer. FRP personnel can work with you to prepare a personalized budget and spending plan designed to make life easier. FRP provides a variety of services that focus on improving soldiers' and their families' financial status and their abilities to perform as informed customers.
FRP offers an on-demand Financial Readiness Training class to provide participants with a practical approach to manage money effectively. In addition to principles of personal finance, other main topics include military pay, allowances, and benefits; planning and budgeting; banking and checking accounts; using credit wisely; insurance; savings and investing; and consumer scams and getting help.
Other workshops and training offered on an as needed basis are:
Remedial Check Writing Class: A mandatory refresher training for personnel who have abused and misused check cashing privileges, this class is offered quarterly or as needed, based upon command referral.
Unit Financial Readiness Training classes offered include:
FRP offers the following free services:
Whenever you make a permanent change of station, you are going to be faced with some unusual expenses. Examples of unusual expenses are travel costs, such as tickets, gasoline, food and lodging, tolls, car tune-ups, new tires before the trip and emergency repairs along the way. Other expenses include deposits, such as damage and rent deposits on new apartments, utilities, telephone and cable fees. You will also face extra temporary living expenses, include closing costs if buying or selling a new house, temporary lodging at the old post and at the new post, meals, restocking refrigerators and food pantries, household incidentals, curtains, light bulbs, toilet paper, soaps, cleaning supplies and equipment.
Other financial questions concerning a PCS move are: do we depend on the money my spouse gets from his or her job? How long will it be before he or she can get a new job? Will it pay as well? Will we have to live on less money for a couple of months or more?
Higher cost of living includes not only higher housing and food costs, but also expenses like having to drive farther to work, child care costs and school costs.
It is very important to have a good financial plan prior to your move. The Financial Readiness Program in Army Community Service can assist you with your financial plan when getting ready to move. Some of the services provided are budget development and planning, debt reduction and liquidation, transition counseling and financial planning. Visit the Financial Readiness website for more information.
The Army Community Service Financial Readiness Program at Fort Rucker, Alabama, is located in the Soldier Service Center, Building 5700, Suite 350. Contact the FRP by phone at 334-255-9631/3765 or visit their website.
The FRP provides soldiers and family members with accurate and current financial information, education and individual financial counseling to ensure they are better able to make educated and informed financial decisions. The FRP has an assortment of services to assist individuals improve their financial well-being and self-sufficiency and reduce financial stressors. Emphasis is on educational workshops and presentations designed to inform individuals regarding money management, debt management and saving and investing fundamentals. The FRP also provides information and support concerning consumer awareness, consumer advocacy and emergency financial assistance.
Unit Financial Readiness Training
Personal Financial Readiness Training at the unit's location will be provided as requested by leadership. Classes will be used as part of the soldier's unit training. These presentations may be presented at the soldier's unit or at other appropriate locations. Leadership may contact the FRP manager to discuss and/or schedule these presentations.
Individual Financial Counseling
Individuals may request financial counseling or be referred for counseling by leadership. Soldiers, family members and others desiring to discuss their financial concerns with a financial counselor may contact the FRP to schedule an appointment.
Credit History and Credit Scores
The FRP will assist soldiers, family members and others to obtain and understand their individual credit reports and credit scores. Options and recommendations will be provided to help with adverse accounts and increase credit scores.