Military Families

Naval Post Graduate School - Monterey, CA

Are any of you currently living in Monterey or have lived there recently? My husband will start NPS there in July so we are looking at an estimated move in date of the first week of June. For the past few weeks, everybody I have talked to at the housing offices has informed me that you can pre lease a home 90 days out if the residents give notice that far in advance. However, they are only required to give 30 days notice so that is what usually happens. I have been checking every 1-2 weeks just in case at La Mesa Village and the person I was speaking with told me to check the Ord Military Community and see if they have any preview letters available. Well the person I've been talking to over there is telling me you can only reserve a house 14 days out and there is no waiting list, it's just first come first serve.

So I'm going to possibly be in a car on my way to CA and not know whether or not I have a home to go to? Does this sound right to you guys or am I misunderstanding her? I understand I'm being overly dramatic and emotional at the moment, but I'm really starting to panic.

Also, do you have any suggestions for other areas outside of military housing should this all fall through? Thanks!

Re: Naval Post Graduate School - Monterey, CA

  • We lived in Monterey until December of 2011 while DH got his MBA at NPS. I loved every minute of it.

    We lived in Doe Park (on the old Ft. Ord) and it was a wonderful new community. I am guessing you called the Pinnacle office there when you say you called the OMC. Honestly, I would just call them back in the morning and talk to someone else... we ran into some issues moving into housing and it was just a matter of getting a person who was interested in helping us to solve our issues (his name was Richard)- some employees were, uh... lazy, I guess, or at least not willing to listen to what we had to say. 

    When we moved in, the community was so new that there was no wait list at all, but the entire development was full within a couple months after that. I would not be surprised if there is a significant wait list at this point, and I don't know of anyone who did give their notice more than 30 days out, since that's what they tell everyone to do when they sign their leases. It's makes it difficult for those who are PCS'ing in, but it's not really any different than many of the other times my family has moved to a new duty station. We very rarely have our housing lined up ahead of time... I think it's important to get a feel for where you will be before you commit yourself to a place sight unseen. There is a Navy Lodge at La Mesa and also a hotel on the NPS campus if you are looking for a place to stay.

    Most of DH's school buddies lived in one or another of the military communities, but several also lived out in town.  There are really nice areas of Monterey and Carmel by the Sea that are worth looking at. Seaside is very close as well, but parts of it are not great (we moved from out in town Seaside to Doe Park for this reason), there are a fair amount of unsavory characters there... so you will want to drive the neighborhoods during the day AND at night before you sign any lease. One of our friends lived on Pebble Beach in a guest house and it was amazing! Another lived quite close to Cannery Row in downtown Monterey, and loved it. Traffic from either place was hit or miss, but never terrible 20 mile back ups (like we are dealing with in Hampton Roads right now, haha) or anything like that. Parking was sort of at a premium in Carmel by the Sea and in the downtown, so that's something to consider. Another nice place was in the Skyline Forest area of Monterey. Quite peaceful but still close to everything.

    If I can help you with anything, PM me!  Take a deep breath, you are going to a beautiful place and it will all work out!

    ETA: You also will get to deliver at CHOMP! This is a beautiful hospital and I so wish we hadn't had to PCS for a couple more months so that I could have had my LO there!

  • We didn't bother with base housing when we were there 4ish years ago.

    We lived in Pacific Grove and loved it. We had a smaller house (1000 sf, 2br), but it was lovely and well under BAH. It was a really great spot for DH since he is a runner - he could easily go to Pebble Beach, get to the rec trail, or pretty much anywhere else, and it was flatter than some of the other areas. We could also walk to restaurants on Lighthouse Ave. since it was only a couple of blocks away. I loved it there.

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  • I have a friend who is headed to Monterey in July too!  Small world :).

    When we came to Fort Leavenworth (for ILE - the Army equivalent of Navy's War College in RI) we were told a similar thing.  No wait, first come first served.  So yea, we were driving west without a real address, but we were fairly sure we wouldn't have to wait more than a day or two for a house.  We made sure to keep lines of communication wide open with the housing office coordinator and she was pretty transparent about the housing situation at the time.

    Housing offices often won't assign you a house until you literally arrive.  So no, you aren't alone.  I think that what is throwing you off is that they are saying there is housing, but you can't have it until you arrive in town.  At many military areas there are waiting lists and you are more used to "hey, there is a 6 month wait, you need to get a short term rental". 

    Monterey, like Leavenworth and Newport, have high turnover rates because the schools are shorter than an average tour.  So people are coming and going from housing A LOT more frequently than at a typical base. 

    Call the housing office and talk directly to them about the houses, the wait, and ask what families typically do when they arrive.  I would just reserve a hotel room for the week you get to Monterey.  Hotel cancellation policies are pretty liberal, so you can easily change them should you roll right into a house.

    Have you looked for a Monterey facebook page?  Most posts/bases have them and they can be a wealth of information. 

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  • I forgot all about Pacific Grove. That is a great area to check out as well.

    The OSC Facebook page is here!

  • I was stationed at the Defense Language Institute, which is a few miles from NPS in Monterey. I chose not to live in the Ord Military Community becuase the BAH in Monterey is really high and if you live in military housing they take all of it, but if you can find a place on your own you can pocket the rest. I ended up finding a really cute apartment in Monterey off Franklin Street with a view of the bay for only $1300. I would stay at the hotel on base and just look around the surrounding area until you find something you love. It's a beautiful area!
  • We are leaving for Monterey this week and have had a home on Ft. Ord preleased for at least a month.  Living in housing worked best for us since our BAH is not enough to get what we need for our family off base, but if that is an option for you I would check out Pacific Grove (most people that I have talked to seem to recommended that area).

    I called pinnacle everyday at opening until a house that I wanted opened up, and we will have to wait a few days to get in once we are there, but not too long.





  • You guys are awesome, thanks!

    I have heard great things about Pacific Grove as well. The big problem we are having is trying to find a place that is pet friendly. We have two fairly large dogs, a shepherd and a hound, and if I do find something pet friendly online it states cats or one small dog only. Giving up my dogs isn't an option so that's why we were leaning towards base housing.

    We did manage to find a few days in May that we both had an open schedule so we're going to fly out and see if we can find anything then. It's definitely short notice, but also better than nothing! Thanks for the facebook link, suggestions, support, etc. It's definitely calmed my irrational self down a little bit!


  • **Makes mental note of all of this.  DH is up for orders in November 2014 and NPS is where we'd like to go next.  Well, really, they'll drag me kicking and screaming from Hampton Roads but I do think I'd really like Monterey.  Plus he needs a chill tour after this sea tour.


  • image flip_flops:
    **Makes mental note of all of this.  DH is up for orders in November 2014 and NPS is where we'd like to go next.  Well, really, they'll drag me kicking and screaming from Hampton Roads but I do think I'd really like Monterey.  Plus he needs a chill tour after this sea tour.


    Oh, you would love it! We actually did just the opposite and I would give up a kidney to go back.  It's such a great place to relax.. Our favorite thing to do was go to Carmel by the Sea, build a little fire on the beach (on some summer nights there might be 15 little campfires all down the beach and it was so pretty) and drink some good wine, watch the dolphins play and enjoy the sunset. :-)

  • DH was stationed there a few years back. We lived in pacific grove to take advantage of the high BAH as PP's have mentioned. Lived close enough to walk to the beach! It was wonderful. We have a dog and used rented a home with San Carlos Agency they are in Carmel but have rental homes all over. It depends on the house if its pet friendly or not. They are very military friendly too so I would recommend them.

    Oh, and we didn't know where we would live until we got there. We were in a hotel for a few weeks before we secured a place. Not the greatest situation to start out with but it worked out in the end.
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  • jb2rnjb2rn
    5000 Comments Third Anniversary 5 Love Its Name Dropper

    You lucky woman! We lived there from May 2006-Dec 2007. Best tour thus far. Only sad it was so short.

    We lived and Fitch Park and loved it, but I don't recally the specifics of housing, we were given our pick of homes since they had just been built.

    We really wanted to live in old Monterey or PG, but my husband needs a garage for his toys, so we chose to live on base and it was great.

    Enjoy the area!

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  • ClynnnClynnn
    10 Comments 5 Love Its First Anniversary
    I was born and raised in the Monterey area! Soooo beautiful! I can't wait to go home on leave in July for a few weeks. Germany is nothing close to it. The wharf has the best clam chowder! Sooo many places to eat. Lovely views! Yes seaside is kind of iffy but hey everywhere has its places so doesn't mean you have to completely avoid just know where not to be. But I think you will love it I sure do!
  • It really is just show up and hope for a house there. We showed up and had to make an appointment to come back. You can't stay in TLF on base or a hotel until you find a place. In the Air Force they will pay for 10 days in a hotel at the per dorm rate for that area. The base housing is new and really nice for base housing.
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