Military House Hunting Trip Tips
A successful HHT is a crucial part of a move: Its purpose is to secure accommodation at your new place of duty so you can make a door-to-door move.
To understand whether you’re eligible for an HHT and which expenses apply to your move scenario, review your relocation directive, and verify your financial estimates online through Your Move Profile. A typical HHT, including travel time, is limited to seven days and six nights and includes expenses for return travel to/from the new location, accommodations, meals, child care, on-site mileage (if travelling by car), or rental car (if travelling by air).
When you’re ready to start planning your HHT, complete the HHT approval form, found on Your Move Profile. Once it’s approved by the required authorities, return it to BGRS by uploading it to Your Move Profile.
If you intend to drive, you can start your travel as soon as you’ve submitted your completed HHT application form to BGRS. If you intend to fly, BGRS will facilitate your commercial travel by contacting the approved government service provider, HRG, who will provide you with your tickets via email.
Here are six tips to keep in mind
- Tip #1 – Once you have reviewed the Relocation Directive and are ready to go on your HHT, ensure you have sufficient funds for your anticipated HHT expenses. The finances section of Your Move Profile will show you an estimated budget based on your profile and allow you to request an advance of funds before you leave.
- Tip #2 – Pick an appropriate time to conduct your HHT. If you’re planning to buy, we recommend going 60-90 days before your anticipated possession date, to allow appropriate time to settle on a closing date. If you’re planning to rent, this timeframe can be shortened to 30-60 days because it is generally easier to sign a lease on short notice than it is to buy a property.
- Tip #3 – Before you leave, make arrangements with any third party service providers (TPSPs) you might need. If you’re planning to buy, contact a lawyer and make sure they are prepared to handle your purchase, and take the opportunity to meet with them while you’re there. Start working with a realtor/broker® well in advance of your departure: They can narrow down potential homes and make sure you’re focused and ready to roll on arrival. If you’re planning to rent, contact a rental search agent before you leave so they can understand your needs and find rental properties tailored to you.
- Tip #4 – If necessary, be ready to make a firm offer or sign a lease without a firm sale or dispossession date on your home at origin. Getting pre-approved for a second mortgage can bring its own complications, so confirm with your bank before you leave to make sure there are no problems once you are ready to place an offer.
- Tip #5 – Your HHT isn’t only about finding a new home. Plan also to visit important places based on your family’s needs. You can use the HHT to make arrangements with schools, churches, clinics, and financial institutions.
- Tip #6 – When choosing your new accommodation, remember the three most important things in real estate: location, location, location. Check out the Choosing a Neighbourhood tab to help walk you through what you should consider when making this decision.
We expect you have more questions. Your Knowledge Centre on Your Move Profile is an invaluable tool for other relocation information and guidance: other VIPs, fact sheets, and FAQs. Finally, the HHT section of the Relocation Directive has all the information you will need on potential HHT benefits. Take the time to review all the information available and familiarize yourself with what you’re eligible for.
Some Tips to Help Reduce Stress
- Contact BGRS relocations, register and familiarize yourself with their website and the services they provide to Canadian Forces members.
- Remember your BGRS registration number, all your third party service providers will require it.
- BGRS has been changing their client services, so be sure to have them answer all your questions sooner rather than later.
- Bring your cheque book. You will need to put a deposit on your new home. You may also need to pay for a water test and a home inspection.
- Bring your slip on shoes.
- A camera is handy for your own personal pictures of schools, community, parks, interior of homes (with permission), to share with family and friends and for your own reference later.
- Get in contact with a local mortgage specialist or broker before arrival. Bring all documents that your lender may require. Speak with your lender before coming to see what is needed.
- Bring every family member’s health information and check with the local health unit to see if additional immunizations are required.
- Bring your identification for your lawyer and real estate transaction. Two pieces are usually required, one with picture, i.e. driver’s license, passport, birth certificate, SIN, etc.
- Book a tentative home inspection and confirm there is no penalty to cancel or reschedule times.
- If bringing the family, don’t forget to pack for the hotel stay. Ear plugs, bathing suits for kids, iPad, etc. Anything to help you relax at the end of each day, and actually enjoy what, we hope, will be a mini holiday!