It goes without saying that most people have massive respect for veterans. However, that comes naturally from the various skills and qualities that they have including discipline, integrity, time-management, etc.
Here is the thing- military retirement pay and pension benefits are great; no one can deny that. They get a 50% pension after 20 years of service which is enough to live a decent life after retirement. However, for a much better life, i.e. a life that they all deserve after so many years of working hard, they need to make some investments too.
The last thing a retired military member wants is investment returns that are reduced by tax deductions. The good news is that there are many investments that are totally tax-free to choose from. However, if you want investment options that require your active participation and can keep you busy, then the following are some of the best options that you can consider:
Buying a franchise has always been one of the most popular investments for entrepreneurs. Although it requires a massive investment (franchise fee can be as high a $50,000 or even higher) and getting started may be tricky for some, you can certainly expect to generate a good profit. Plus, many franchises actually offer discounts on the franchise fee to the veterans.
The following are some of the best franchising opportunities that you can look into:
- Snap-on Tools: Snap-on Tools a hardware store franchise that sells power tools, hand tools, and such. It helps veterans by taking $20k off the start-up inventory and offers a modest franchise fee of up to $15,000.
- 7-Eleven: 7-eleven is a famous brand that offers quality food and drinks through its convenience stores across the country. It offers a discount of 10-20% on the franchise fee and special financing for veterans. The initial franchise fee varies from $10,000 to $1,000,000.
- Home Instead: Home Instead Senior Care that provides in-home care for older adults is one of the top franchise brands for veterans. It offers many perks to the retired military members apart from a flat 10% discount on the initial franchise fee that’s around $55,000.
- Cruise Planners: Cruise Planners is a home-based travel agency company that offers a variety of benefits for veterans who want to open franchises of their own. These include 25% off on the franchise fee, $60 design credit, $250 marketing credit, free software license, etc.
Real estate is another good option for veterans just like non-military individuals. If you are fine with long-term returns, then you can invest in a good property whose value you think is likely to increase over time. You can also rent it out until you sell it so that meanwhile you can earn an income in the form of the monthly rent. Either way, keep the following things in mind:
- If you want a high income, then you can also purchase a commercial property and rent it out rather than purchasing a residential property.
- If you want to buy a new home and rent a portion of it, then consider finding a realtor who has Military Relocation Professional (MRP) certification as they will be more understanding of your requirements.
- Consider investing in Real Estate Investment Funds (REITs) which are a collection of properties and other kinds of real estate assets. So, in a way, they are like mutual funds for a collection of properties rather than stocks. They can offer a decent income to veterans and getting started with them is easy.
- If you are still an active member of the army, then you might be receiving Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH). However, its exact amount depends on the cost of living in a particular area. So, be sure to look into that before you invest.
The U.S. government is required by the law to involve military veterans in at least 3% of its contracts and subcontracts. The Vets First Contracting Program, for instance, helps the veterans to get government contracts easily.
If you come from a technical background in the military viz. networking, IT, security, etc. then you can get appropriate contracts and train easily. If you need help, then you can also consider taking some of the courses on government contracts that are offered by the U.S. Small Business Administration here.
Veterans of the U.S. need not worry after retiring from the armed forces. There are all kinds of business and investment opportunities in the country that can help them generate a healthy income and stay self-dependant. The options discussed above are only a few of them.