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Employment Regulations and Restrictions in Government Housing

So you want to start a day care from your home. You have started to collect toys and are really excited about the prospect of starting your own business. But before you take the leap, you need to know about the rules and regulations that affect government housing.

In the past most home-based businesses were not allowed in on-base military government housing. However, the DoD has finally realized the wisdom of allowing home-based business to thrive and improve the quality of military communities. In most cases you can now operate a home-based business out of your home on base. Common businesses include: day care, tutoring, sewing, writing, graphic design services, computer programming, event planning and furniture repair.

Unfortunately, each branch of the military has slightly different rules and regulations. Your business will also have to adhere to the local rules and regulations governing the type of home-based business you are interested in. In some states like California, the civilian rules and regulations governing home-based businesses are substantial and complicated but in other places they are less of a problem.

The rules and regulations that govern employment in military housing in the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines are all slightly different, so you should look up the specific guidelines for your base and branch of the military. These rules have been written up to comply with Section 806 of Public Law 99-145 (DoD Authorization Act, 1986) that was specifically crafted to promote the operation of small home-based businesses by the spouses of military members. In general, all branches of the military adhere to the following guidelines when it comes to operating a home-based business in government housing:

  • In order to run a home-based business in military government housing, you must submit a written request for authorization. You request must be approved prior to starting the business.
  • Generally, your request will be approved if it is deemed that your business will not interfere with the tranquility or standard of living of the military housing community.
  • Your business must adhere to local laws and regulations and may be subject also to military laws and regulations, the most serious of which is a regulation that prevents the solicitation of sales to subordinate officers.
  • You may ask to modify the house for your business but you must do this at your own expense and must return it to its prior condition at your own expense. If your business incurs substantial additional expenses in the utilities, the installation may ask you to reimburse them for these costs.
  • Finally your business must not compete with the sales of items offered through any of the military exchanges.

For additional information contact:
Military Family Resource Center
Office of Family Policy and Support
4015 Wilson Blvd., Suite 903
Arlington, VA 22202-5190
(AV) 226-4555 (202) 696-4555

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