U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Military Life and Issues
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 05-15-2018, 12:24 AM
 
5,075 posts, read 5,253,543 times
Reputation: 2246

Advertisements

How much money will you realistically make/have/saved up at the end of your enlistment?

A lot of people join military due to lack of employment opportunities. Throughout history, it has been colloquially known military will give you three square meals a day. But I wonder what the wages I like, and if it is actually worth it, or is it better to just do a commissioned based sales, which is always hiring.

There is also the GI Bill. Is that what most of the "money" or reward actually is, that they sell to potential recruits right now? I hear there are things like signing bonuses and such. But I also heard that sometimes the military overpays that, and will demand it back even after a few years.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 05-15-2018, 04:51 AM
 
Location: Richmond, VA
2,525 posts, read 4,191,573 times
Reputation: 4035
Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ Brazen_3133 View Post
How much money will you realistically make/have/saved up at the end of your enlistment?

A lot of people join military due to lack of employment opportunities. Throughout history, it has been colloquially known military will give you three square meals a day. But I wonder what the wages I like, and if it is actually worth it, or is it better to just do a commissioned based sales, which is always hiring.

There is also the GI Bill. Is that what most of the "money" or reward actually is, that they sell to potential recruits right now? I hear there are things like signing bonuses and such. But I also heard that sometimes the military overpays that, and will demand it back even after a few years.
How much you can make is a matter of public record, and you can feel free to look it up for yourself.



How much you have/save up is a purely personal decision. A single military member can save a high percentage of their pay, but most don’t-often they liquidate their assets, and drink them, during their first few years until they grow up a little.

‘I’ve heard’ is not really a rational basis for a discussion. I guarantee I have been exposed to literally thousands more members and veterans than you, and I have not personally found a single case of an overpayment that the military demands back after a few years post-separation. The government is usually quick to recoup overpayments, and given my first point-that how much you make is a matter of public record-it is an individual screwup to spend overpayments. Service members know what they are supposed to be paid. If they get an overpayment and spend it, that’s stupidity, not malice on the part of the government.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-15-2018, 07:01 AM
 
Location: San Antonio
3,059 posts, read 8,782,762 times
Reputation: 4378
Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ Brazen_3133 View Post
How much money will you realistically make/have/saved up at the end of your enlistment?

A lot of people join military due to lack of employment opportunities. Throughout history, it has been colloquially known military will give you three square meals a day. But I wonder what the wages I like, and if it is actually worth it, or is it better to just do a commissioned based sales, which is always hiring.

There is also the GI Bill. Is that what most of the "money" or reward actually is, that they sell to potential recruits right now? I hear there are things like signing bonuses and such. But I also heard that sometimes the military overpays that, and will demand it back even after a few years.
Gone are the days where we don't make much.

First, we don't "sell" the Post 9-11 GI Bill. It's free.

If you get a bonus, you don't have to pay it back unless you don't meet your obligation. For example, if you get a bonus to be a cop for 6 years, and after 1 year, you decide to switch to be a pharmacy tech, you might have to pay the bonus back because you didn't stay as a cop for 6 years.

As far as saving up, I'm enlisted, and am legitimately a millionaire from my enlisted salary. It's the only job I've ever held, and I'm now in my mid 30s. I bought a house at my first duty station, moved, got renters in it, and bought a house at my next duty station, etc, etc. Now I have 4 houses with $700,000 in equity and their rental incomes supplement my salary. One of the houses will be completely paid off next year and will just be income.

I have been investing in my TSP for around a decade and half (our version of a 401K). I have been disciplined and invest A LOT, and it has grown, a lot. I also have stocks, an IRA, and mutual funds.

My pay as enlisted in around $80,000 a year, and I invest a full 1/3 of that, plus all the rental income from my homes. I'm married, and my husband is also enlisted with the same large salary. So, we're making almost $160K a year, not including rental income. We invest an insane amount because we live well below our means, live in a small home, drive used cars, no expensive hobbies. Debt Free other than the mortgages.

Did I mention half of our income is TAX free? And we don't pay any state taxes on any of it? Medical and dental are free... so most of our salary is TAKE HOME.

Both of us have earned our degrees for free, and we will save our GI Bills and gift them to our children and they will go to college for free.

Not to mention, I don't even need the investments, I just don't know what to do with all my money, so I invest. When I'm 38 years old, I will retire. So will my husband. From that time, until we die, the military will continue to pay us around $60,000 a year, FOREVER, for nothing. We'll still be young enough to have second careers, and we have the investments to supplement. Eventually I'll collect Social Security, and I might get disability as well. That's insane.

I'd probably still be working at the mall if I hadn't have joined. I don't know why more people don't join!!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-15-2018, 08:20 AM
 
Location: New Mexico U.S.A.
23,415 posts, read 37,215,414 times
Reputation: 27284
Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ Brazen_3133 View Post
How much money will you realistically make/have/saved up at the end of your enlistment?

I hear there are things like signing bonuses and such. But I also heard that sometimes the military overpays that, and will demand it back even after a few years.
Depends on how long your enlistment is.

It depends on what Rank you are.

Currently, if you enter the U.S. Military as a pay grade E-1, Enlisted your basic pay would be $1,514 per month for four months, then it would increase to $1,638. You would have a place to live and you could eat your meals for free in the messing facilities... You would of course eventually get promoted. Pay charts URL is shown below.

If you enter as a Commissioned Officer, O-1 your pay would start at $3,108 per month, minimum.

If you enter as a Warrant Officer, your pay would start at $3,038 per month, minimum.

Pay Charts: https://militarybenefits.info/2018-military-pay-charts/

Qualified active duty U.S. Army recruits may earn an enlistment bonus of up to $40,000. I know two young soldiers who received that. It was spread out during their enlistment as a yearly payment.

Army enlistment bonuses: https://www.goarmy.com/benefits/mone...tra-money.html

Last edited by Poncho_NM; 05-15-2018 at 08:30 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-15-2018, 11:00 AM
 
Location: Honolulu, HI
1,555 posts, read 315,380 times
Reputation: 2103
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmarie123 View Post
Gone are the days where we don't make much.

First, we don't "sell" the Post 9-11 GI Bill. It's free.

If you get a bonus, you don't have to pay it back unless you don't meet your obligation. For example, if you get a bonus to be a cop for 6 years, and after 1 year, you decide to switch to be a pharmacy tech, you might have to pay the bonus back because you didn't stay as a cop for 6 years.

As far as saving up, I'm enlisted, and am legitimately a millionaire from my enlisted salary. It's the only job I've ever held, and I'm now in my mid 30s. I bought a house at my first duty station, moved, got renters in it, and bought a house at my next duty station, etc, etc. Now I have 4 houses with $700,000 in equity and their rental incomes supplement my salary. One of the houses will be completely paid off next year and will just be income.

I have been investing in my TSP for around a decade and half (our version of a 401K). I have been disciplined and invest A LOT, and it has grown, a lot. I also have stocks, an IRA, and mutual funds.

My pay as enlisted in around $80,000 a year, and I invest a full 1/3 of that, plus all the rental income from my homes. I'm married, and my husband is also enlisted with the same large salary. So, we're making almost $160K a year, not including rental income. We invest an insane amount because we live well below our means, live in a small home, drive used cars, no expensive hobbies. Debt Free other than the mortgages.

Did I mention half of our income is TAX free? And we don't pay any state taxes on any of it? Medical and dental are free... so most of our salary is TAKE HOME.

Both of us have earned our degrees for free, and we will save our GI Bills and gift them to our children and they will go to college for free.

Not to mention, I don't even need the investments, I just don't know what to do with all my money, so I invest. When I'm 38 years old, I will retire. So will my husband. From that time, until we die, the military will continue to pay us around $60,000 a year, FOREVER, for nothing. We'll still be young enough to have second careers, and we have the investments to supplement. Eventually I'll collect Social Security, and I might get disability as well. That's insane.

I'd probably still be working at the mall if I hadn't have joined. I don't know why more people don't join!!
I wish I could print this post and show it to everyone who says “military isn’t a good choice for upward social mobility.”

I just received my first bachelors degree for free and will go for my masters, for free. Then in a few years I’ll be using the VA loan to get a house

It amazes me how the military has problems with recruiting people when there are so many free benefits that come with serving.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-15-2018, 05:05 PM
 
4,139 posts, read 4,038,070 times
Reputation: 2173
It depends on where you are stationed and if you take advantage of studying for promotion and whatever your job is in the service. Some jobs get promoted quicker than others. Now, if you are smart, and have a chance, get a part time job. I did thise my entire career in the Navy.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-15-2018, 09:21 PM
 
5,075 posts, read 5,253,543 times
Reputation: 2246
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmarie123 View Post
Gone are the days where we don't make much.

First, we don't "sell" the Post 9-11 GI Bill. It's free.

If you get a bonus, you don't have to pay it back unless you don't meet your obligation. For example, if you get a bonus to be a cop for 6 years, and after 1 year, you decide to switch to be a pharmacy tech, you might have to pay the bonus back because you didn't stay as a cop for 6 years.

As far as saving up, I'm enlisted, and am legitimately a millionaire from my enlisted salary. It's the only job I've ever held, and I'm now in my mid 30s. I bought a house at my first duty station, moved, got renters in it, and bought a house at my next duty station, etc, etc. Now I have 4 houses with $700,000 in equity and their rental incomes supplement my salary. One of the houses will be completely paid off next year and will just be income.

I have been investing in my TSP for around a decade and half (our version of a 401K). I have been disciplined and invest A LOT, and it has grown, a lot. I also have stocks, an IRA, and mutual funds.

My pay as enlisted in around $80,000 a year, and I invest a full 1/3 of that, plus all the rental income from my homes. I'm married, and my husband is also enlisted with the same large salary. So, we're making almost $160K a year, not including rental income. We invest an insane amount because we live well below our means, live in a small home, drive used cars, no expensive hobbies. Debt Free other than the mortgages.

Did I mention half of our income is TAX free? And we don't pay any state taxes on any of it? Medical and dental are free... so most of our salary is TAKE HOME.

Both of us have earned our degrees for free, and we will save our GI Bills and gift them to our children and they will go to college for free.

Not to mention, I don't even need the investments, I just don't know what to do with all my money, so I invest. When I'm 38 years old, I will retire. So will my husband. From that time, until we die, the military will continue to pay us around $60,000 a year, FOREVER, for nothing. We'll still be young enough to have second careers, and we have the investments to supplement. Eventually I'll collect Social Security, and I might get disability as well. That's insane.

I'd probably still be working at the mall if I hadn't have joined. I don't know why more people don't join!!
Why is half your income tax free?

So it is possible to get into RE speculation on a grunt's paychecks. I knew I should have joined after I could not get job right out of college. I guess you rent out to other incoming soldiers then? But don't they have housing on the base for troops? Did you not have to live on base yourself?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-15-2018, 09:23 PM
 
5,075 posts, read 5,253,543 times
Reputation: 2246
Quote:
Originally Posted by Poncho_NM View Post
Depends on how long your enlistment is.

It depends on what Rank you are.

Currently, if you enter the U.S. Military as a pay grade E-1, Enlisted your basic pay would be $1,514 per month for four months, then it would increase to $1,638. You would have a place to live and you could eat your meals for free in the messing facilities... You would of course eventually get promoted. Pay charts URL is shown below.

If you enter as a Commissioned Officer, O-1 your pay would start at $3,108 per month, minimum.

If you enter as a Warrant Officer, your pay would start at $3,038 per month, minimum.

Pay Charts: https://militarybenefits.info/2018-military-pay-charts/

Qualified active duty U.S. Army recruits may earn an enlistment bonus of up to $40,000. I know two young soldiers who received that. It was spread out during their enlistment as a yearly payment.

Army enlistment bonuses: https://www.goarmy.com/benefits/mone...tra-money.html
I having trouble understand the charts. Some have no number in then, and is it per month, or per year? And what do the numbers in the left column mean: the 0-1, 0-3 etc, etc?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-15-2018, 09:39 PM
 
Location: New Mexico U.S.A.
23,415 posts, read 37,215,414 times
Reputation: 27284
Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ Brazen_3133 View Post
I having trouble understand the charts. Some have no number in then, and is it per month, or per year? And what do the numbers in the left column mean: the 0-1, 0-3 etc, etc?
O-1 is an officer, which would be a Second Lieutenant
O-3 is an officer, which would be a Captain

The E- are the Enlisted
The W- are the Warrant Officers

It can get a bit confusing... Here are the Pay Grades and Ranks: https://www.infoplease.com/us/milita...military-ranks
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-16-2018, 03:25 AM
 
Location: Richmond, VA
2,525 posts, read 4,191,573 times
Reputation: 4035
Quote:
Originally Posted by NJ Brazen_3133 View Post
Why is half your income tax free?

So it is possible to get into RE speculation on a grunt's paychecks. I knew I should have joined after I could not get job right out of college. I guess you rent out to other incoming soldiers then? But don't they have housing on the base for troops? Did you not have to live on base yourself?
Housing and food allowances are tax free. States often don’t tax active duty pay (depends on your state of residence, which you don’t have to change if you move to comply with orders).

With rare exceptions, usually overseas or key personnel (usually command positions) troops who are married or over a certain rank do not HAVE to live on post and there is not usually enough housing for them to do so anyway. Not everyone is stationed near a post (Recruiters, ROTC, and reserve advisors are often out there in very small detachments).

I’m never quite sure if you’re serious with your questions or comments in this forum. There is a quality about them that seems almost purposefully naive, but I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt.

Last edited by GeorgiaTransplant; 05-16-2018 at 03:35 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply

Quick Reply
Message:


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Military Life and Issues
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2017, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32 - Top