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Moving to Alaska > Military
The Military in Alaska

Military-friendly communities welcome you
f you are reading this, chances are you, a spouse, or a family member is being deployed to the Last Frontier. Congratulations, you hit the jackpot! Alaska is a thriving, military-friendly state with quality schools, opportunity, jobs, great shopping and plenty of adventure. It’s also a premier place to raise a family.

Military bases in Alaska
The largest military presence is in Fairbanks and in Anchorage. Eielson Air Force Base and Fort Wainwright Army Post are near Fairbanks, while Fort Richardson Army Post and Elmendorf Air Force Base are located in Anchorage.

Major cities offer Lower 48 conveniences
Here’s what you need to know: Anchorage is the largest city in Alaska and Fairbanks is the hub of the state’s interior. Both have great shopping, restaurants and franchise chains that you would find in any other state.

Weather not as bad as you may think
What about the weather? You’ll be happy to hear that typical winters in Anchorage are milder than Chicago because the city sits on the ocean. Winters are cold in Fairbanks, but it’s a dry cold. In summer interior temperatures often hit the 80s.

Resources drive strong economy
And the economy? Because Alaska is a resource-rich state (and prices for oil and minerals are at their highest levels ever), the state’s economic engine is not only strong, but it’s poised for growth. Add one of the lowest tax rates in America, and you’ll see that Alaska is in an optimum situation that most states envy. There are also plenty of jobs in a vast array of industries offering excellent salaries. For example, the median income for teachers is $52,141 (higher than the national average); average annual pay for mine workers is $80,000; and government workers (depending on the line of work) generally start at $40,000.

Variety of housing options available
Anchorage and Fairbanks offer a diverse housing inventory ranging from condos to luxury homes, and it’s surprisingly affordable. If you're looking for a house in Anchorage, expect to pay around $265 for a 2,000-square-foot, three-bedroom home, or $185,000 for a 1,500-square-foot condo. If you're willing to drive 30 minutes out of town, you can get a half-dozen or more acres — and lots of solitude — for a few hundred thousand dollars. Visit the Alaska Multiple Listing Service for additional information.

Cost of living on par with West Coast
Chances are you have heard Alaska is one of the most expensive places in the nation. While that’s generally true, the good news is that Fairbanks and Anchorage enjoy the lowest cost-of-living rate in the state. As an example, it costs roughly $122 per week to feed a family of four in Anchorage and in Fairbanks that’s on par with Portland, Ore., where the weekly family grocery bill is $100. And when talking about cost of living, it’s important to note that maintaining a high quality of life in Anchorage or Fairbanks is significantly less expensive than in other states. Alaska is a great place to raise a family because there are greenbelts and parks everywhere with access to dozens of low-cost activities. Bottom line, the best parts of Alaska are completely free!

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