Tony Lewis, with the Fort Belvoir Housing Services Office, helps Sgt. Justin Foote and his wife, Jackie, complete forms to capitalize on the Rental Partnership Program, Dec. 4. 

The Fort Belvoir Housing Office has options for families looking for housing in the National Capital Region.

“The Rental Partnership Program provides immediate, off-post housing, cost savings to Service members enrolled in the program,” said Brian Smith, Housing Division chief. “Also, if a Service member or their family has a dispute with their landlord, the memorandum of agreement allows our housing office to get involved on their behalf.”

Edmond Hackett, housing specialist, explained, “It waives application and credit check fees, and all security deposits. You can expect a reduction in the rental rate of up to 5 percent, too.”

The Belvoir program applies to 17 apartment complexes within a 20-mile radius, according to housing specialist Tony Lewis.

“It works like this. We give the Service member a list of properties, so they can check them out. If they find a place, the property gives them a letter of intent, which they bring, with a copy of their orders, to our office. They fill out some forms. Then, we validate everything, provide a letter of eligibility they take back to the rental property to show they’re enrolled,” said Lewis.

For properties to be in the program, they must apply, and then housing staff inspect the units in several ways.

“We inspect the facilities for any life, health or safety issues, as well as overall appearance, cleanliness, and the condition of the surrounding neighborhood,” said Hackett.

Saving Money

Sgt. Justin Foote and his wife, Jackie, enrolled after they had found off-post housing. “We lived off-post in Fort Bliss,” he said, adding, housing quality on Fort Belvoir was not the issue for them, but cost certainly was.

“Currently we’re living on post, in River Village, but our contract ends in a year and it’s just the two of us. We want to downsize and save a little money each month, and try to pay off debt,” said Foote.

Landlord dispute help

Lewis explained, not all properties qualify for this program, adding that inclusion in RPP can mean not only savings, but peace of mind.

“All the properties have a memorandum of agreement with Fort Belvoir that has already been approved through legal,” Lewis said. “If the Service members have any problems they can’t work out, they come back to us and we get involved, on their behalf.”

The program’s success ensures apartment eligibility draws constant attention from property owners, with housing department staff constantly reviewing new applicants. “I’ve been here for 12 years,” said Hackett, “and we continue to add properties all the time. It’s continually growing.”

Call the Fort Belvoir Housing Office at 703-805-3019 for more information.