Your 2022 Benefits Update

Your 2022 Benefits Update

We hope that you have felt the effects of 2022’s largest pay increase for military retirees, and disabled veterans for decades. Triggered by inflation and an annual adjustment to the federal cost of living allowance (COLA), retirees and veterans receiving disability payments from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) have seen their paychecks increase by 5.9% this year. 

Over the past ten years, this annual adjustment has averaged around 1.5%. When the Social Security Administration announced the adjustment rate, the VA was required by law to update their disability payments by that amount. Military retirement payments are not required to follow the increase, but they traditionally do. Survivors who receive Survivor Benefit Plan payment will see the same 5.9% increase this year. Military retirees that initially joined the service on or after August 1, 1986, and opted for the Career Status Bonus (CSB/Redux retirement plan) have their increases reduced by 1%, so they will see a smaller increase for 2022. 

The increase for disabled veterans who receive a VA disability check ranges from $8.50 for a 10% rating, to $185.65 for a 100% rating. Additionally, civil service retirees and social security recipients will also receive the 5.9% jump in their monthly checks. The average social security beneficiary will realize an extra $91 per month in 2022. 

The Department of Labor determines COLA annually by measuring the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which is a broad sampling of the cost of consumer goods and expenses. The CPI is compared year-over-year. If it increases, a COLA increase is triggered. The COLA affects approximately 20% of Americans, including disabled veterans, social security recipients, federal retirees, and retired military members. 

For 2022, the Veterans Administration continued its no-limits policy for qualifying VA Home Loan buyers. This means that there is no cap on the size of a $0 down home loan. VA funding fees range from 0.5% on some refinances to 3.6% for some home purchases The fee is determined by loan type, down payment, and whether it is your first time VA financing. Veterans with service-related disabilities, some surviving spouses, and active-duty Purple Heart recipients are exempt from the VA funding fee. 

If 2022 has you home shopping, contact us and one of our experienced, veteran-friendly real estate specialists will be happy to assist you with the process.

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