The IDF makes a number of housing solutions possible for lone soldiers based on the soldier’s personal status, and based on criteria established by the Department of Individual Affairs for approval of request for a housing solution. A Mashakit Tash from Mador Prat (IDF Support Staff) summons lone soldiers a few months before enlistment where the various housing options and rental assistance programs listed below are discussed.
Soldier House (בית החייל — Beit Hachayal)
A lone soldier may lodge permanently free of charge at one of the Soldier’s Welfare Association’s lone soldier houses located throughout the country in Kiryat Shmona, Tiberias, Jerusalem, Haifa, Tel Aviv, Beer Sheva & other cities. The soldier will receive laundry and food services at these facilities. A recognized Lone Soldier can stay here up to 3 months before his or her draft and 30 days upon completion of army service.
Rental Subsidy: If a lone soldier decides to live an apartment on his or her own, the army provides a monthly rental subsidy up to 1050 NIS. Lone soldiers may also receive financial assistance to help pay for housing maintenance costs. It is possible to get payments for rent up to a maximum of 3 months in advance if the rental contract mandates payment in advance.
Furniture and Appliances: If your apartment does not have the basic furnishings that you need (bed, refrigerator, washing machine, couch, table and stove), lone soldiers can request to receive furniture from the army through his or her Mashakit Tash (Support Service Non Commissioned Officer). A lone soldier can also turn to the Lone Soldier Center for this request. The Mashakit Tash (Support Service Non Commissioned Officer) will visit the lone soldier’s home before the army evaluates this request. It is important to note that different units have different resources, but most of the time, the army is able to provide you what you need. You may keep the items you receive from the army after completing your service.
Arnona (Municipal/Local Tax) Exemption: Lone soldiers, like all other soldiers, do not have to pay local/ municipal taxes during their service, and for four months after discharge. You must submit a request to obtain this exemption at your local authority/ municipality along with a certificate of service (issued by the town officer) and a copy of your lone soldier’s card.
Kibbutz accommodations are designed specifically for soldiers serving in closed units (only go home on various weekends/leaves). The kibbutz will provide lone soldiers with laundry and food service, furnished rooms, a kitchenette, and a bathroom with a shower. Additionally, to encourage absorption into the kibbutz framework, a soldier who lives on kibbutz will be entitled to a kibbutz grant of 150 NIS.
Shared Apartments with other Lone Soldiers
Lone soldiers may also lodge in a shared, fully furnished apartment with other lone soldiers provided by the Soldier’s Welfare Association, free of paying rent or taxes. A soldier who receives approval to lodge in the apartment is obligated to take care of the equipment in the apartment and evacuate it upon discharge or whenever it is demanded of him. This is the most requested option. If you do not receive a shared apartment by your draft date, you may stay in a Soldier House until assigned.