Maximizing Your Fort Hood PCS: Tips And Advice

Moving to Fort Hood can be an exciting adventure for military families. However, a Fort Hood PCS can also be daunting and stressful. I completely understand. As a military spouse myself, we’ve moved countless times, and every move is different and unique, no matter how many times you’ve done it before. So, it’s essential to utilize all the resources at your disposal to make the most out of this experience. You can maximize your move to Fort Hood (it’s actually called Fort Cavazos now, but we’ll cover that later) by taking advantage of resources both on and off-post to make it as smooth and enjoyable as possible.

Preparing for a move requires a lot of preparation, both mentally and physically. It’s recommended to start planning three to six months before the actual move. This planning includes organizing and packing your belongings in advance, making the necessary arrangements for your vehicles and pets, and ensuring that your paperwork is in order with the military. It’s important to stay organized to make the move less stressful.

Another critical factor when moving is finding the right home. With so many options available, this can be an overwhelming task. Consider your budget, location, and proximity to schools, amenities, and base when finding the right home. There are plenty of online resources to help you in your search.

If you have children, researching schools and childcare options should also be a priority. Fort Hood has a variety of schools and childcare centers to choose from, but be sure to take a tour and speak with other parents before making any decisions about your child’s education or care.

Lastly, exploring local amenities and settling into your new community is essential for a smooth transition. Take time to explore the area, try out the local cuisine, and make new connections with other military families and residents in your neighborhood.

The military move to Fort Hood can be a thrilling yet challenging experience for military families. By preparing in advance, finding the right home, researching schools and childcare options, exploring local amenities, and settling into your new community, you can make this transition as smooth and enjoyable as possible.

Map of Fort Cavazos
Map of Fort Cavazos and the Surrounding Areas and Communities

Preparing for your move to Fort Hood.

Making a military move to Fort Hood requires careful preparation. To ensure a smooth and stress-free relocation, there are critical steps one must take.

The first is the use of the Defense Personal Property System. It’s essential to schedule delivery dates for household goods shipments and unaccompanied baggage. You can accomplish this by visiting the local transportation office or using the online system.

Why is this so important? Well, Fort Hood is a massive installation with thousands of Soldiers. When you relocate to this post you’ll be fighting for limited resources. So scheduling delivery dates for your household goods shipment in advance will help ensure your belongings arrive on time.

Packing your household goods and shipping them off is only a part of the relocation process. If you have privately owned vehicles, you should research the Dallas Vehicle Processing Center and legal restrictions to plan your move better. Temporarily storing your household goods until you’re ready to receive them is also an excellent option to give you more flexibility.

Another vital consideration is scheduling your military flights. Keep in mind that Fort Hood is located near several airports, including the Dallas/Ft. Worth International Airport and Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. This knowledge can help reduce the stress of booking flights.

The aim of the preparation is to ensure a successful transition to Fort Hood. Researching useful information and resources can make the move a success. With proper preparation, you can reduce the stress and confusion that come with the relocation process. So, take the necessary time to prepare, and you’ll have a seamless move to Fort Hood.

Finding the right home in Killeen and the surrounding area.

Aerial Photo of a Home on Lake Belton in Central Texas

If you’re facing the challenge of finding the perfect home in Killeen or the surrounding area, don’t worry – it’s an important task that can help make your Fort Hood PCS as smooth and comfortable as possible.

Military families like yours have several living options, including on-post housing or renting or owning a home off-post. The decision-making process can be perplexing, but it’s essential to have a roof over your head, and more importantly, it becomes your home.

If you choose to live off-post, many incredible towns and neighborhoods in the Fort Hood area can cater to your specific needs. Whether it’s a cozy apartment, a family-friendly neighborhood, or an expansive location, the choices abound. It may come in handy consulting with a local real estate agent to sort through available options in the area, make a tailored decision, and avoid feeling overwhelmed by the process (shameless plug, that’s where I come in!).

White Rock Estates, for instance, is a popular area for military families seeking to purchase homes near Fort Hood. These homes range from two to five bedrooms, with an area size of approximately 1,000 to 4,000 square feet. Additionally, this area offers many great amenities nearby, including walking trails and a popular kennel for pet lovers. Who wouldn’t want to call this place home?

There are other great places as well. Bella Charca, for example, is a luxurious community in the city of Nolanville. It’s a short drive from Fort Hood, and it’s perfect for those seeking a lively community with plenty of amenities. It offers three- to five-bedroom homes with 2,500 to 6,000 square feet of living space. Of course, they are on the upper end when it comes to size.

Regardless of where you decide to live, make sure to conduct thorough research on the local neighborhood, schools, and transportation options nearby to ensure they meet your family’s needs. Take your time in the decision-making process and involve your family in the hunt for the perfect home. It is a significant move for everyone involved, but it manages to build a sense of comfort and stability.

If you have any questions about specific areas or would like some recommendations, I’d love to help you out. I’ve been in the area for years and know the ins-and-outs very well.

Researching schools and childcare.

Planning your PCS to Fort Hood can be challenging, especially if you have a family. One critical factor that you must consider during your preparations is researching schools and childcare options available in the area to ensure your child’s growth and development is catered to.

The Killeen Independent School District serves Fort Hood, and you’ll find over 35 elementary, middle, and high schools throughout the district. Private schools are also available, giving you a wide range of options to choose from. It’s essential to look for schools with values that align with your family’s beliefs and educational goals.

Childcare is equally crucial, and Fort Hood’s Child Development Centers (CDCs) provide quality care and education for children ranging from six weeks to five years old. However, these facilities might have limited availability due to high demand and wait lists for positions. The last we heard, the waitlist was around 6 months at the CDCs on post. However, you can also check out other childcare options available through on-post organizations and private providers.

As you research schools and childcare options in the Fort Hood area, don’t forget to factor in your child’s needs. Find out about the available educational programs and extracurricular activities to ensure they fit your child’s interests and capabilities. KISD has an amazing STEM program in which you’ll have to apply to have your child accepted.

With proper planning and consideration, you’ll undoubtedly give your children a smooth transition into a new school system and provide them with an excellent experience during your Fort Hood PCS.

Exploring local amenities.

Stillhouse Hollow Lake

Fort Hood is an army base situated in the heart of Texas, surrounded by a mix of indoor and outdoor attractions. Texas’ temperate climate provides ample opportunities to stroll outdoors, appreciating the beauty of what nature has to offer.

For example, there is Belton Lake and Stillhouse Hollow Lake in the area. Both offer great opportunities for swimming, fishing, boating, and other activities. One of our favorite things to do is go camping at Dana Peak Park, which nestles up against Stillhouse Hollow Lake.

If outdoor activities are not your thing, then exploring Killeen is an excellent alternative. Killeen boasts a diverse range of shopping and dining options from famous brand stores and restaurants to hidden gems showcasing local flavor. Harker Heights also has some of the best shopping in the area with Market Heights.

As for dining, there’s no shortage of options around Fort Hood. You’ll find a wide variety of cuisines, such as Italian, Mexican, Chinese, and American fast food. Whether you’re in the mood for casual dining or looking to celebrate a special occasion, there’s something for everyone.

Also one of our favorite places is The Gin at Nolan Creek. They make amazing Texas cuisine and they have an absolutely beautiful atmosphere.

When it comes time to move to Fort Hood and you’re ready to explore the area, there are plenty of options for your family. With great local amenities, outdoor activities, and shopping centers within reach – you’ll feel right at home.

Using resources on post.

Military families often miss out on valuable on-post resources when navigating a PCS. Fort Hood has a range of programs to support all aspects of your move.

The Defense Personal Property System (DPS) is an excellent tool for active duty members to schedule household goods shipments and unaccompanied baggage deliveries. DPS also provides helpful details about quarantine restrictions and required documents.

When it comes to privately owned vehicle relocation, the local Transportation Office can assist with scheduling delivery to the Dallas Vehicle Processing Center for shipment overseas and provide temporary storage for your personal property.

But resources aren’t purely logistical – there are plenty of entertainment options available on post at Fort Hood. Check out the Military Free Space A Flights for an exciting way to explore nearby states. Or choose to spend a weekend on post at White Rock Estates, which features a playground, walking trails, and a new kennel construction to house your pets when you’re away.

Don’t forget! By utilizing all the programs provided on post, you can reduce the stress of a military move and fully enjoy your new duty station.

Settling into your new home.

After a long and strenuous move, you’ve finally arrived at your new home in Fort Hood. Congratulations on making it here! Now, it’s time to unpack, unwind and make this new space feel like home.

Your first task is to begin unpacking your belongings and start organizing them in your new living space. If you find that you don’t have enough space, don’t fret! The Defense Personal Property System offers temporary storage options to make this process easier on you. Having an organized living space is incredibly important to your long-term success and overall happiness.

After you get settled in your new home, it’s time to explore the surrounding area. Fort Hood is full of exciting and entertaining activities for military families like hiking, walking trails, kennel construction and even online events. Take advantage of these to get to know your new community and make new friends. Attending local events and meeting your neighbors can help you learn all about the great things Fort Hood has to offer you and your family.

Lastly, we know military moves can be stressful, but your local Transportation Office is there to help you with everything you need. From scheduling deliveries and transporting household belongings, including your privately owned vehicle or unaccompanied baggage. It is important to gather all required documents and review any quarantine restrictions which might be laid out by state laws. This will make the entire moving process much easier.

With these tips, you can successfully settle into your new home in Fort Hood and start enjoying everything this community has to offer.

FAQs about Fort Hood

Something I get all the time from military families considering a move to Fort Hood is tons of questions. That’s perfectly okay! So I’ve put together some frequently asked questions and answers to help you transition smoothly. I’ll continue to add additional questions and answers as they pop up. In the end, I simply want you to have the best Fort Hood PCS as possible.

What is Fort Hood called now?

It is officially called Fort Cavazos, named after General Richard Cavazos, the first Hispanic four-star general in the United States Army. Just for ease, simplicity, and familiarity, many keep calling Fort Cavazos Fort Hood.

What is Fort Cavazos?

Fort Cavazos is a U.S. Army base located in the heart of Texas, just outside Killeen and Copperas Cove. It is currently home to more than 23,000 soldiers and their families, as well as various units within the 1st Cavalry Division and III Corps Headquarters.

What is there to do at Fort Hood?

The Fort Hood area has plenty of entertaining activities. If you like outdoor activities, there are plenty of walking/hiking trails and recreational areas. Additionally, there is camping, boating, fishing, mountain biking and golfing nearby. There are also a variety of shopping centers and museums in the area that you can explore. Killeen, Temple, Copperas Cove, and Harker Heights all have tons of fun activities to keep you busy!

What is the weather like in Fort Hood?

In the summer, it gets really hot. I’m talking low to mid-90s, with an occasional heatwave that breaks 110°F. The winters are mild and comfortable, rarely dropping below-freezing temperature. That’s not to say we don’t get cold snaps that come through. Spring is lovely, and the fall is beautiful,s with lots of foliage! All in all, the weather at Fort Hood tends to be very mild.

What housing options are available?

The military has several housing options on post for military families, including both on and off-post complexes. Additionally, you can find a variety of rental homes, houses for rent, apartments, townhomes, and condos in the area. The best way to find out about housing options is to get in touch with a real estate agent like myself. I can help you find the perfect place for your family!

What are some of the neighborhoods in the Fort Hood / Fort Cavazos area?

The area is pretty big, so there are countless neighborhoods. However, some of the more popular neighborhoods include Liberty Springs in Nolanville, Estancia West in Killeen (super close to Fort Hood), and Cedarbrook Ridge Estates. There are plenty more, but I’ve heard great things about those areas from people I’ve sold houses to.

Military Families love Fort Hood, TX.

Moving to Fort Hood can be a nerve-wracking experience. However, with some careful planning and research, you can make the best out of your PCS. No matter if you’re a lone ranger or part of a family, assistance, and guidance are available to make the process as smooth as possible.

Getting the most out of your Fort Hood PCS involves searching for suitable accommodation, studying up at schools and childcare centers, and establishing ties with local aid organizations. Whether you are a military member or a family member, by fully immersing yourself in the community, you can make your time at Fort Hood better than ever.

Settling in at your new home at Fort Hood (aka Fort Cavazos) may seem like an intimidating prospect. Nevertheless, with careful planning, research, and a willingness to engage with the local community, you can make the most of your move. Thank you for reading and happy travels!

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