Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) is a United States military privilege given to many military members. It was previously called Basic allowance for quarters (BAQ) and is administered by the Defense Travel Management Office (DTMO).
BAH is given to members so that they can provide housing for themselves and their dependents (usually spouse and children). BAH is given when the member or their dependents do not occupy government quarters or barracks.
BAH is non taxable money paid on a monthly basis. There are 3 factors for determining the amount of BAH:
Pay grade - The higher the grade, the higher the BAH.
Location - BAH is intended to match the average monthly rent in the area where the member is stationed, thus more expensive regions (they are indexed by zip codes) to live allocate more BAH or vice-versa.
Dependents - If the member has dependents or not. There are 2 types or BAH, with dependents and without dependents. The rationale behind this is that a single person doesn't need as much room as a couple or a family.