Housing Frequently Asked Questions
Q1: How is rent handled for local housing off base (up front in full, month to month, water, electric, security)
A: Usually, first month’s rent and one month security deposit.
Q2: What is the average payment in rent for local housing off base?
A: It varies depending on the type of rental, but we have plenty of listings for everyone.
Q3: Are there any bad neighborhoods off base that need to be avoided?
A: We don’t list properties in undesirable locations.
Q4: Are base housing special needs (wheelchair, deaf, blind, mute…) accessible?
A: In general, base houses are single story. Current renovation projects are providing some handicap units.
Q5: What are the storage options?
A: While the homes do provide some storage, it is limited. Additionally, there are no facilities aboard the Naval Station for storing excess furnishings.
Q6: How do you pay for utilities?
A: Usually, the utilities are left in the landlord’s name and you can pay in cash or deposit in landlord’s bank account.
Q7: What utilities do you need?
A: All utilities are provided to the house including water and electricity. This is covered with your utilities allowance. Some homes use butane/propane tanks for hot water.
Q8: Do you need a special account to have the utilities turned on?
A: No. Usually, the utilities are left in the landlord’s name and you can pay in cash or deposit in landlord’s bank account. The Spanish government requires an NIE number to rent housing, open checking accounts, hook up utilities and live on the economy.
Q9: What is the average amount for utilities?
A: This fluctuates. As of May 2013, it is 435 Euros for singles and 635 Euros for families.
Q10: What is the typical size of a Spanish house?
A: Generally the rooms, especially bedrooms, are smaller than the American standard, but there are exceptions. The houses range from 900 square feet to 2,000 square feet.
Q11: Do the houses have carpet?
A: No, ceramic tile or marble.
Q12: What does parking look like for houses out in town?
A: Most of our listed homes have private parking.
Q13: How does the electricity conversion work? Will my appliances be compatible in Rota?
A: The electricity on base is the same as in the U.S. 110V 60htz. In town it is 220V 50htz so the htz is the speed so a clock would be slower. The voltage can be transformed down to 110V so most appliances will work with a transformer without problems. Don’t bring large appliances like a refrigerator or washer/drier housing will provide them for your tour.
Q14: What if I want a house on base and it’s not available?
A: You place your name on the waiting list and secure an off-base lease.
Q15: Do single Sailors require permission to live off base? If so, what kind of permission?
A: E-5 and above are authorized to live out in town.
Q16: What accommodations are available on base for single Sailors?
A: Military personnel in pay grades E-4 and below on unaccompanied orders, whether shore-based or sea-based, are required to live in UH upon arrival to Rota. UH residents are housed in modules. Each module is comprised of two separate bedrooms, each approximately 120 sq. ft., separated by a shared bath and kitchen area. They are equipped with a microwave, refrigerator, stackable washer and dryer and two-burner cook top. There are no storage facilities on base for excess personal items.All E-5 and above will reside off base. Check with your command upon arrival to determine eligibility to live off base.
Q17: How many people will I share a room with on base?
A: Private bedroom, shared bath/kitchenette/laundry with one other Sailor.
Q18: Do I need to buy converters or transformers for off base housing before I arrive?
A: All our loaner appliances are European standard. Also, Housing will provide transformers for your small appliances. You don’t need to bring any large appliances for on or off base.
Q19: Will I receive the full Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) for Rota? What is the Overseas Housing Allowance (OHA) and how does it work?
A: If you reside in the barracks you will receive a reduced COLA rate. Everyone else will receive a full COLA rate. For OHA you will receive only the amount of rent you pay plus a utilities allowance that will vary every two weeks based on the rate of exchange.
i. OHA http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/ohaCalc.cfm.
ii. COLA http://www.defensetravel.dod.mil/site/colaCalc.cfm.
Q20: What living arrangements will be available for unaccompanied E-7 and above on base?
A: There are no accommodations for any single E-5 and above on base.
Q21: If my wife decides to take leave from her job and visit me in Rota for a few months, will accommodations be available on base for both of us if I am required to live on base?
Q22: I’ve heard that houses and apartments are smaller in Rota; should I only bring small furniture?
A: It depends on the size of the home and apartment.
Q23: Does the base provide converters or transformers?
A: Off-base residents, whether accompanied or not, can borrow transformers for small appliances such as a coffee maker, fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors for their entire tour.
Housing Questions and Answers
Q1: Will there be temporary housing available upon arrival?
Q2: What is the wait list like for government housing(average time)?
A: Assignment to government quarters typically takes approximately two weeks. Finding a home in the community typically takes less than 30 days, unless you arrive during July and August, which can extend the process beyond 45 days. 3 bedroom officer: two years. 4 bedroom officer: one year. Currently there are no wait times for enlisted Housing but that will change as the ships arrive.
Q3: How long can I live in temporary housing before we find permanent housing?
A: Up to six months.
Q4: How much time do I have in TLA?
A: 30 days.
Q5: If I move without my sponsor, will I get TLA?
A: Must be authorized on orders.
Q6: If I move without my spouse, who is a civilian, will I get TLA?
A: Must be authorized on orders.
Q7: What is HEAT?
A: Applications may be submitted at the Housing Service Center (HSC) or prior to arrival using the Housing Early Application Tool (HEAT) application, which can be found at http://www.cnic.navy.mil/HEAT. HEAT allows the HSC to place the service member on the waiting list. HEAT does not give priority on the waiting list. If an application is submitted within 30 days of arriving, the member’s effective date on the waiting list is the date of detachment from the last permanent duty station.
Q8: Can I wait for a particular house or housing area to be available?
A: No, you will receive one offer for on base. If you refuse, you will be off the waitlist for one year.
Q9: Is there housing for large families?
A: Yes, there are newly renovated 4 bedroom officer (2,500-square foot) and enlisted (2,200-square foot) homes on base.
Q10: Is there housing for bachelors?
A: E-4 and below in one plus one barracks. Each module is comprised of two separate bedrooms, each approximately 120 sq. ft., separated by a shared bath and kitchen area. They are equipped with a microwave, refrigerator, stackable washer and dryer and two-burner cook top.
Q11: What different size on-base houses are there?
A: 2,3, and 4 bedroom officer homes and 3 and 4 bedroom enlisted homes.
Q12: What is OHA?
A: Overseas Housing Allowance
Q13: How does OHA differ from BAH?
A: OHA you will receive only the amount of rent you pay plus a utilities allowance that will vary every 2 weeks based on the rate of exchange. BAH is a set dollar amount paid based on location.
Q14: Is there BAH available for enlisted sailors and what are the qualifications?
A: All single Sailors authorized to move out in town (E-5 and above) will receive Overseas Housing Allowance (OHA). All married Sailors are authorized OHA.
Q15: Are pets allowed to live in base housing?
A: Two pets per house (cat and/or dog).
Q16: Is there housing available for same sex spouses?
A: Yes, in accordance with DoD policy.
Q17: Is there housing available for same sex spouses with children?
A: Yes, in accordance with DoD policy.
Q18: How do I get/stay in contact with Housing on base?
A: Please visit http://www.cnic.navy.mil/HEAT. Once you submit an application, the Housing Service Center will contact you.
Q19: How do I get/stay in contact with Household Goods?
A: Set up and monitor of the status of your HHG shipmen in DPS (https://move.mil). Speak with the Norfolk HHG office first. For Rota questions call commercially to 011-34-956-82-2419/DSN 314-727-2419, commercial 011-34-956-82-1624/DSN 314-727-1624 or commercial 011-34-956-82-1623/DSN 314-727-1623
Q20: Are there any restrictions for living off base?
A: Single Sailor - E-5 and above only. Check with your command upon arrival to determine eligibility to live off base.
Q21: Are the homes available off base inspected by a trusted agent? Are we required to negotiate for purchase/rent with a trusted government agent?
A: The Housing department inspects all off base homes prior to putting them in our database. We will assist with all negotiations.
Q22: Are there any websites that I can use to search for housing prior to arriving in Rota or contacting a local realtor?
A: Not recommended. Facebook can be a tool for familiarizing yourself with the area and types of homes available, but please understand that the Housing Service Center has no control over any of the listings posted there. Many entities that post listings online are not legitimate. In order to protect your interests at all times, and as part of our procedures, you are strongly recommended to avoid making any commitments on properties prior to your arrival. This can be something as simple as asking a property manager, realtor or landlord to hold a property for you. Verbal agreements are binding in Spain, and you can be held monetarily liable for any requests you make.
Q23: It was put out at the last FFSC brief that all single Sailors can live in barracks. How does this affect single Sailors who normally get BAH with dependents due to court ordered child support?
A: Single Sailors that reside in the barracks that pays court ordered child support would be entitled to BAH-Diff. Single E-4 and below will live in the barracks. Those collecting BAH in the States for dependents should ensure that their orders state that they are authorized an unaccompanied tour and can collect single OHA.
Q24: Can you provide me more information on the housing available (i.e., barracks, ppv, etc.)
A: Temporary Housing: Navy Gateway Inns and Suites, and Navy Lodge. Housing: On-base, Unaccompanied Housing, and Off-base.
Q25: Is there any paperwork or procedures that I have to follow in order to live off base?
A: Please visit http://www.cnic.navy.mil/HEAT. This site is to be use for both on- and off-base housing.