With Veterans Day approaching and the veteran unemployment rate at 3.6%, the personal-finance website WalletHub today released its report on 2023's Best and Worst Places for Veterans to Live. The report compares the 100 largest U.S. cities across 19 key metrics, ranging from the share of military skill-related jobs to housing affordability and the availability of VA health facilities.
|Best Cities for Veterans||Worst Cities for Veterans|
|1. Raleigh, NC||91. Santa Ana, CA|
|2. Austin, TX||92. Baltimore, MD|
|3. Orlando, FL||93. Toledo, OH|
|4. Tampa, FL||94. Baton Rouge, LA|
|5. Virginia Beach, VA||95. Indianapolis, IN|
|6. Scottsdale, AZ||96. Jersey City, NJ|
|7. Colorado Springs, CO||97. Chicago, IL|
|8. Gilbert, AZ||98. Memphis, TN|
|9. Laredo, TX||99. Newark, NJ|
|10. Jacksonville, FL||100. Detroit, MI|
To view the full report and your city's rank, please visit:
Military Money Survey & Best Military Credit Card
- 52% of Americans think inflation is hitting military families harder than civilians.
- 65% of people think the military does not do enough to teach financial literacy.
- Nearly 2 in 3 people think poor financial literacy among military personnel is a threat to national security.
- 7 in 10 military members think joining the military is a good deal financially.
- More than 2 in 3 Americans think that members of the military should not have to pay interest on debt or income taxes while deployed.
- 44% of people are willing to use at least 10% of their income to fund the military.
- Navy Federal Credit Union Visa Signature® Flagship Rewards Credit Card is the best military credit card of 2023. It gives 3 points per $1 spent on travel purchases and 2 points per $1 spent on everything else. It also offers an initial bonus of 40,000 points.
To view the full survey, please visit:
Q&A with WalletHub Analyst Cassandra Happe
What makes a city good or bad for veterans?
"Various factors can influence how good or bad a city is for veterans, from the quality of the city's VA facilities and its retirement-friendliness to the poverty, unemployment and homelessness rates. All cities should prioritize taking care of veterans' needs, considering how much veterans have sacrificed to serve the country and keep it safe. However, 45% of military members think the U.S. does not care for its veterans financially," said Cassandra Happe, WalletHub analyst. "Some cities set aside an adequate amount of money for veterans affairs while others do not, either because they do not have enough of a budget or veterans aren't prioritized. Even though cities have a responsibility to their veterans, the federal government is also responsible for them. We spend a massive amount of money on national defense and military operations, yet a comparatively small amount on helping veterans once their service is done. It is unacceptable that there are tens of thousands of homeless veterans; that number should be reduced to zero."
What can we do to reduce the financial stress on military families?
"The best way to reduce the financial stress on military families is by ensuring that servicemembers in war zones do not have to worry about their family's basic living expenses simultaneously. In addition, we should also provide more effective financial education for military community members," said Cassandra Happe, WalletHub analyst. "Military families can undergo tremendous financial stress, especially when one parent is deployed and cannot help manage the family's finances. On top of that, 52% of Americans think inflation is hitting military families harder than civilians, adding to their financial worries. Service members in combat situations also put their lives at risk every day, which could lead to even more of a financial burden on their families if they die or end up with a disability. The least we can do for our military families is to take care of their basic needs."
Does the military do enough to teach financial literacy?
"The military unfortunately does not do enough to teach financial literacy to service members and their families. Not only do 65% of Americans agree that the military lacks financial literacy education, according to WalletHub's 2023 Military Money Survey, but 77% of military members think it's a national security issue. People who are financially literate in the military can worry less about money problems and focus more on their service. They are also less susceptible to coercion by foreign powers," said Cassandra Happe, WalletHub analyst. "It's worth noting that the military is not alone in its financial literacy deficiency. Most employers and big organizations in the U.S. also fail to provide enough information. Even schools lack financial education, and that's where Americans should be first introduced to these important concepts."
How should credit card perks for first responders like firefighters, police and EMS compare to those given to military members?
"Around 79% of people think that first responders like firefighters, police and EMS should get the same credit card perks as military personnel. That would include low caps on interest rates and advantages such as waived fees, cash back incentives and no late penalties, in many cases," said Cassandra Happe, WalletHub analyst. "Since first responders dedicate their lives to serving the public and risk their own lives, giving them at least some of the same financial benefits our military members receive makes sense."
The above Q&A is also provided in audio format and can be edited as needed.