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Financial Readiness Program
11 Hap Arnold Blvd.
Tobyhanna, PA 18466-5044
Contact information for key programs and services at this installation.
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.
Army Community Service provides a full range of financial services, whether you are having financial difficulties or just want to expand your knowledge about finances. We offer basic financial classes on budgeting, financial planning and credit. We can assist with debt liquidation and provide consumer information.
If you are relocating to Tobyhanna Army Depot, you should know that some of the benefits include good schools, safe neighborhoods and lower taxes than adjoining states. Homes are less expensive in the Poconos than in surrounding states, as well as maintenance costs and the general cost of living. The average monthly costs for housing - rentals and purchases - is $1,725. The average monthly utility payments is $280. Pennsylvania's minimum car insurance coverage requirements are 15/30/five. The first two numbers refer to bodily injury liability limits and the third number refers to the property damage liability limit.
Plan Permanent Change of Station Budget
A PCS move can be one of the most exciting and rewarding parts of a military career: new places, new faces and new challenges. Any PCS move is going to cost money so it is important to plan ahead in order to avoid financial surprises.
Before You Move
Start saving now. Experts say three to six months’ pay in reserve will amply cover emergencies. Get a sponsor at the new post. He or she will probably be able to answer a lot of your questions. Find out your new mailing address. Even if it is only your new unit or a postal service box, you'll need a temporary address. Send out changes of address letters (credit card companies, loan companies, magazines, banks, anyone who owes you money or a deposit refund, insurance companies). Go through your address book, your bills and financial papers from the past couple months. Make out a list of company addresses, telephone and account numbers, etc. Leave a forwarding address with the post office or postal service center, as well as with your old unit. Discard household goods you no longer want or need. You'll only have to unpack them at the other end, and if you are overweight, you'll have to pay for additional shipping. Have a garage sale. Contact the housing office for temporary lodging after you clear out current quarters and before you actually depart your new station. If you are renting an off-post apartment or house, arrange for an inspection after your household goods are removed. Get an agreement in writing that any damage or deposit money will be refunded.
Questions to Ask Your Sponsor
Whenever you commit to a permanent change of station, you are going to be faced with some unusual expenses like those listed as follows:
Other Financial Impacts
There may be other financial impacts of a PCS move. Here are some examples:
You may have to live on less money for a couple months or more.
Higher cost of living -- A higher COLA includes higher housing and food costs and commuting, child care costs, school costs, etc.
Where the Money Might Come From
Dislocation allowance, BAH, travel pay, income tax deduction, garage sale, refunds on rent or damage deposits and utility deposits. ACS provides a full range of financial services, whether you are having financial difficulties or just want to expand your knowledge about finances. ACS offers basic financial classes on budgeting, financial planning, and credit. ACS can assist with debt liquidation and we provide consumer information.
Advance Basic Pay
This is basically an interest-free loan you can get when you make a permanent change of station move. The collateral is your military salary. You normally repay advance basic pay in 12 equal payments. You may draw up to three months' basic pay in advance, interest free. Normally, basic pay advances are paid back over a period of 12 months, starting a month after the allowance is drawn. However, regulations permit a 24-month pay-back period under certain conditions. Your base pay and finance office can provide details. Advances are loans, and you have to pay them back. They are not free money and should not be spent on luxury products, such as CD players.