Friday, October 16, 2009


1. If we are going to start in March based on your experience when should we expect to be given our options of bases? We were given our base choices one month before Top Gun left for COT. However, I think they try to give more time than that generally. 2. I know the first time they give you two choices, were either of them on the "list" you filled out? Our two choices were not even on our radar! There is a slim chance you'll get your top picks the first go around. After that, it really just depends. JAG's from our current base have typically received their 1st or 2nd top choice for their next assignment. Why? Because it is a busy base (meaning lots of cases and work for the JAG's) and not the most desirable location so they try to make you happy by accommodating you with the next go around. 3. When does the housing allowance start? The day your spouse leaves i.e. drives to COT or leaves to catch the airplane is the day he will officially go on active duty and that's when you'll start accruing salary and BAH (housing allowance) 4. Why did you choose to live on base vs. off-base? We were told several opinions regarding this matter. Many will say "You have to live on base at least once for the experience" or "It's good to live on base to help you acclimate to the military." Initially, I wanted to live off base b/c I wanted to feel as "normal" as possible. Meaning I didn't want to feel like I was in the military. However, I was offered a brand new 2000+sq foot house on base which also meant a 2 minute commute. I also knew nothing about the military so I figured living on base would help with that and it has. With that said, even though we live on base I don't feel like it's too much military in my face all day long, on the contrary actually. I am SO happy we live on base. It's a very nice base, I have great neighbors and I feel as "normal" as one could. With that said I do not plan on living on base the next go around b/c it's likely that we won't be offered such a nice home and we'll also recieve a higher BAH (housing allowance) and be able to afford a nicer home to rent off base. 5. With three kids (that is how many I have), how big of a house did they give you and is it nice? I have a brand new home, 4 bedroom and 2 1/2 bath. Each base will vary. I hear it's all downhill from here. The houses that would have been offered to me if this one wasn't finished are old and in my opinion not that great but not horrible either. They were built probably in the 70's. Every thing is very industrial looking. Imagine the kind of tile and carpet you see at your kids school! Once you recieve your assignment each base usually has a website and you can view the on base housing there beforehand so you have some sort of idea on what they offer.
6. We have heard that most are deployed right around the 18mth mark, have you noticed that from other JAGs around you? While Top Gun says most isn't necessarily an accurate word, it is true that a good amount are being deployed around 18mths. However, we'd say anywhere between 18mths to your 3 year mark is the likely time you'll be deployed, if you'll be deployed. 7. We also heard that the deployment time is moving from 4 mths to 6 you know anything about this? This is very true, 6 months it is. We haven't heard of anyone only going for 4.


  1. Thanks for answering my questions, even if they weren't all what I wanted to hear (Yuck on the 6mth deployment).

  2. Hi - my husband graduates in December and is considering his options. How competitive is it really?