Armed Forces Bank Survey Reveals Insights into Military Families' Financial Challenges, Attitudes and Well-Being

Armed Forces Bank Military Family Financial Readiness Report is released during May, Military Appreciation Month. Armed Forces Bank meets unique needs of military families with products like no-fee checking accounts.

LEAVENWORTH, Kan., May 22, 2024 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- New research from Armed Forces Bank – a full-service military bank committed to serving those who serve since 1907 – examines the unique financial challenges, attitudes and well-being of military families. In its Military Family Financial Readiness Report, released as the nation celebrates Military Appreciation Month, Armed Forces Bank shares comprehensive survey data gleaned from people connected to military life.

"Military families face distinctive financial concerns due to the nature of their service, including frequent relocations, deployment and fluctuating income. Understanding how they feel about financial readiness is crucial for providing tailored support and services," said Armed Forces Bank SVP and Regional Military Executive Tom McLean.

This Military Family Financial Readiness white paper examines benefits and challenges of current financial products, the importance of homeownership, post-military service financial confidence levels, preferred resources for financial insight, the impact of military experience on financial habits, and factors that contribute to or hinder financial literacy and security. Following are highlights from the report:

Importance of Home Ownership for Military Families
Home ownership holds significant importance for military families with 51% responding that homeownership is "very important" mirroring a broader sentiment in the United States. Surveys consistently show that homeownership is perceived as a crucial aspect of the American Dream, highlighting its symbolic and financial significance.

A study conducted by the National Association of Realtors in 2021 found nine out of 10 Americans believe that owning a home is a good financial decision, a stat that underscores the positive perception of homeownership's financial benefits. Despite this significance and the home ownership benefits offered by the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), only six percent of the more than 21 million veterans and service members in the U.S. today have used their VBA benefit.

"It's hard for military families to decide to buy or rent because they move so frequently," said Melanie Aguto, senior loan officer at Armed Forces Bank & Top 50 Scotsman Guide VA Lender. "My role as a loan officer and military spouse is to provide education and support to help clients make informed choices."

Most and Least Used Banking Products by Military Families
According to the survey, the most commonly used banking products among military families are checking (79%) and savings (72%) accounts, as well as credit cards (69%). They less frequently leverage retirement accounts (36%), insurance products (35%) and investment services (30%), indicating potential areas for improvement and wealth-building strategies.

Aspects of Banking Services Most Important to Military Families
When it comes to banking services, low fees were most important to respondents (59%). Armed Forces Bank responded with a no-fee Access Freedom Checking account, which offers:

  • No monthly service charge
  • No minimum balance
  • Military Early Pay (access to direct-deposited funds from the Department of Defense one business day before actual pay date)
  • Access to 38,000+ ATMs
  • Free overdraft protection (when linked to a savings account)

"We're proud to offer current and former military members financial products and services that cater to the military lifestyle," said McLean. "Our financial products are easy to understand and provide financial freedom to access and move money seamlessly. In addition, Armed Forces Bank offers peace of mind that your checking account has no monthly service charge and no minimum balance requirement."

Impact of Military Experience on Financial Habits
While most respondents (41.05%) view their military experience positively, citing benefits such as discipline and preparation, less than a quarter (17%) of respondents are not confident regarding financial readiness post-military service, with concerns ranging from job security to lack of financial education to understanding of the GI bill and other military-specific services.

Assistance Needed to Best Prepare for Financial Future
Financial education emerges as the most sought-after resource for preparing for the future. Addressing the challenges faced and providing targeted resources can significantly improve the financial well-being of military members and their eventual transition to civilian life.

Armed Forces Bank commissioned the Military Family Financial Readiness survey online in April 2024. All of the 200+ respondents were connected to active military life, a condition for participation in the survey. The survey participants included veterans (26%), retired military members (24%) and active-duty service men and women (17%).

To gain additional insights from the Armed Forces Bank's Military Family Financial Readiness Report, visit

About Armed Forces Bank
Armed Forces Bank, founded and headquartered in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, is a full-service military bank committed to serving those who serve since 1907. Armed Forces Bank provides affordable, personal and convenient banking and financial services to both active and retired military, as well as civilian clients in all 50 states and around the world. Approximately 75% of Armed Forces Bank associates have some type of military affiliation either by spouse, retired themselves or their children.

Armed Forces Bank has $1.3 billion in assets and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Dickinson Financial Corporation, a $3.9 billion bank holding company headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri. Armed Forces Bank's sister bank, Academy Bank, is a full-service community bank with over 70 branch locations in Arizona, Colorado, Kansas and Missouri. For more information, visit and follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram. Member FDIC.

Media Contact

Elaina Boudreau, BELA Communications, (913) 660-0548, 

SOURCE BELA Communications

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