Frequently Asked Questions

What is Housing Services Office?

Fort Bragg's Housing Services Office provides guidance, forms, information, pamphlets, brochures, housing advocates, and assistance to service members for their off-post housing needs.

A Directorate of Public Works Housing Division office, HSO is a Fort Bragg garrison element to assist service members and their Families.

When purchasing a condo or a townhouse, what's the difference?

Condo unit owners own the inside of their units. Townhouse owners own the

Complete unit, including exterior surfaces and the land on which the unit is built.

Every condo or townhouse development also has “common areas” of the property such as recreation areas, sidewalks and parking lots. Condo owners share ownership of the common areas with other owners, while common areas in townhouse developments are usually owned by the homeowners’ association for the benefit and use of unit owners. Either way, owners typically pay dues to a homeowners’ association to cover the costs of maintaining the common areas, as well as other common expenses.

For more condo/townhouse information, check out the pamphlet here.

I am a member of the United States Armed Forces and I signed a 1-year lease for quarters in North Carolina. May I terminate my residential lease early?

North Carolina General Statute § 42-45 allows members of the United States Armed Forces to seek early lease termination in the following cases:

• The service member receives permanent change of station orders to depart 50 miles or more from the location of their current residence;

• The service member is “prematurely or involuntarily released or discharged from active duty with the United States Armed Forces;” or

• The service member is deployed for 90 days or more. lease termination rights may be waived, but to be legally effective, a waiver must comply with requirements, including, but not limited to, the following:

• The waiver must be in writing;

• It must be on a document separate from the lease;

• The waiver must be signed by the service member;

• The waiver must specify the legal instrument (e.g., the lease) to which it applies; and

• It must be in at least a 12-point font.

If a landlord asks you to waive SCRA rights as a condition of renting the premises, you should go elsewhere for rental quarters and then report the matter to the nearest legal assistance office and thebase housing and housing referral office.

What should I do if I am a service member, but none of the scenarios above gives me the right to terminate my lease early?

When you need to terminate your lease and neither of the lease termination statutes applies, you should review the lease to see if it gives you any other special lease termination rights or seek legal assistance. If you leave the premises early in breach of the contract, the landlord may be entitled to damages you caused as a result of the breach. These damages can include the loss of rent during the remaining lease term and costs of re-renting the property.

Again, the landlord must take reasonable steps to “mitigate” damages, that is, to re-rent the premises, but the landlord may apply your security deposit to satisfy these damages and may also sue you for any additional damages in excess of the security deposit.

For more information about N.C. Military personnel Residential Lease Termination, check out the information here.

I filled out an application to rent an apartment and gave the landlord money to "hold" the partment for me. Now I have found another place that I like better. Can I get my money back?

Probably not. Money you give to "hold" an apartment generally can be kept by the landlord. It is the price you pay to ensure that the landlord does not rent the apartment to someone else. Furthermore, if you have already agreed to rent a particular apartment foe a particular term at a particular price, you may have created an oral lease; if so, the money may be considered a security deposit which can be retained by the landlord to the extent necessary to compensate him for your failure to pay rent. And, you may have to pay rent until the lease expires or until the landlord re-rents the property, whichever occurs first.

Click here to find out more about Renting Residential Real Estate.

What is a home inspection?

A home inspection is an evaluation of the visible and accessible systems and components of a home (plumbing system, roof, etc.) and is intended to give the client (usually a homebuyer) an understanding of their condition. It is also important to know what a home inspection is not! It is not an appraisal of the property’s value; nor should you expect it to address the cost of repairs. It does not guarantee that the home complies with building codes (which are subject to periodic change) or protect you in the event an item inspected fails in the future. [Note: warranties can be purchased to cover many items.] No home inspection should be considered a “technically exhaustive” evaluation; rather, it is an evaluation of the property on the day it is inspected, taking into consideration normal wear and tear.