Civilians Enjoy Security of Living at Patrick AFB
- November 28, 2011
Seven civilian families call Patrick Air Force Base home, a move made possible after base officials lifted the restrictions two years ago on who could lease the installation’s family housing in an effort to increase the project’s occupancy rate.
“I like the fact that we don’t have unwanted visitors,” a civilian tenant told Florida Today. “There are no solicitors. The friendliness of everyone is overwhelming,” she added.
Patrick’s population dropped markedly due to a realignment shortly after housing at the central Florida base was privatized in 1996. When the housing market collapsed more recently, making it more attractive for airmen to buy or rent housing off base, the occupancy rate sunk to 76 percent. Once occupancy fell below the 90 percent for three months, officials can rent to civilians.
Before the rate falls that low, the base can offer the housing to active duty personnel assigned to other facilities, National Guard personnel and reservists, civil service employees and federal retirees.
There are some downsides to living on base — civilians must undergo criminal background checks, and visitors need to apply for a pass for a specific time.