Five Essential Monthly Housing Allowance Payment Reminders

  1. Monthly Housing Allowance (MHA) for students using the Chapter 33 Post-9/11 GI Bill® are paid only when actively enrolled and attending. Breaks between semesters, quarters, or terms are not eligible for MHA reimbursement, which means that no housing payment will be paid for these periods.
  2. Housing payments are prorated. Payments are prorated if course(s) do not span an entire month. If you are certified for part of a month, the payment will be prorated as follows:
    • VA uses a 30-day month. Divide the monthly rate by 30 to get the daily rate. If the courses begin mid-month, starting on the 15th and running through the 30th, then you are entitled to 15/30ths of the full housing rate.
  3. You must have a rate of pursuit over 50% to be eligible to receive MHA payments. If the rate of pursuit is equal to or less than 50%, you are not eligible to receive MHA for the certified period.
  4. Changes in enrollment can affect the rate of pursuit, which will subsequently affect MHA. Contact VA to see how the change in pursuit may affect your MHA payments.
    • Example 1: dropping a course takes the rate of pursuit from 100% to 90%. This will cause your MHA payments in future months to be prorated. If those months were already paid (the change was not reported before payment), a debt for the overpayment will be assessed.
    • Example 2: terminating all enrollment (dropping all courses) will cause MHA to stop being paid effective the date of termination. If you were already paid for the full month, or longer, a debt will be assessed for the overpayment.
  5. MHA payments are made in arrears, meaning that you will routinely receive the previous month’s MHA payment during the first week of the following month. While VA will make every effort to make the payment on the first day of the month, do not be concerned about non-payment until the end of the first business week.
    • Example: the course began mid-August. The MHA payment received during the first week of September will be the prorated August MHA payment.

Plan accordingly to ensure you are taking courses and using GI Bill benefits in a way that fits your specific needs, and so quality of life can be maintained.

Contact VA (via the Education Call Center or AskVA) with questions or concerns about MHA payments.