Military Enlisted Pay Breakdown
Additional Pay & Allowances for an E-4
In addition to Basic Pay, a Specialist may be eligible to receive several types of allowances and incentive pay.
Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH)
Basic Allowance for Housing is a monthly payment meant to subsidize a servicemember's housing while deployed. The amount of BAH received each month depends on the location in which they live.
The average Basic Housing Allowance for a Specialist with dependants is $1,548.40, or $1,228.08 with no dependants.
Basic Allowance for Subsistance (BAS)
All enlisted members of the Army receive a monthly allowance for food and drink of $
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Enlisted members' BAS is higher than officers' BAS, as enlisted members are generally responsible for buying their own food.
Hazard Pay / Hostile Fire Pay
A Specialist may receive hazard pay of $165.00 / mo while serving in an active combat zone or subject to hostile fire or other hazards.
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The Base Pay for a Deployed E4 Specialist in the Army
Enlisted pay grades begin at E-1 and go through E-9. Base pay is the same for all members of the Armed Forces of equal rank and years of service. An E-4 Army specialist is one who has technical expertise and may have completed a college degree or specialized civilian training. An E-4 receives the same base pay as a corporal, but as a non-commissioned officer, a corporal has greater leadership responsibilities and outranks a specialist. Deployment does not affect base pay, but it may impact other types of pay and allowances.
About Military Pay
The U.S. Department of Defense normally revises its pay table annually. The pay table establishes base or basic pay that takes into account the service member's rank and the number of years of military service. Other allowances, such as those for off-base housing and food, are based on the number of dependents the service member supports. When deployed, soldiers might receive their food and housing on post and are therefore ineligible for subsistence or housing allowances. The DoD pay tables also address special pay, such as combat pay and sea duty.
Basic Pay for E-4
Although most E-4 specialists have completed at least two years of service, it is possible to enlist at that rank if the candidate has earned a bachelor's degree and does not desire or qualify for the officer corps. With less than two years of service, monthly base pay was $2,139.00 for an E-4 in 2018. The basic pay was $2,248.50 per month for those with at least two years of service but less than three years. For three and four years, monthly base pay was $2,370.30 and $2,490.60, respectively. With five years of service, an E-4 earned $2,596.50 per month, the maximum allowed in 2018 for soldiers of this rank, which means that the only route to a pay increase is through a promotion in rank.
Special Pays for Deployed Soldiers
Not included in basic pay are amounts that deployed soldiers may receive. In addition to base pay, soldiers may qualify for a family separation allowance of $250 per month if deployed to an area where dependents are not permitted. Hazardous duty pay, as of 2018, is $150 per month. Hostile fire or imminent danger pay is $225 per month. Enlisted soldiers qualify for $340 per month in diving pay, and an E-4 earns up to $308 per month for sea duty.
Allowances Often Lost When Deployed
Typically, the Army supplies deployed soldiers with food and lodging. If so, they lose their housing and subsistence allowances while they are deployed. How much an E-4 receives depends on where they live and whether they have dependents. For example, an E-4 living off post in Los Angeles could qualify for $2,067.00 per month if single or $2,739.00 per month with at least one dependent for housing. Additionally, an E4 can qualify for $369.39 a month for food as of 2018. However, if deployed to an area where they are not required to live or eat on-base, even deployed soldiers might qualify for housing and subsistence allowances.
Jeffrey Joyner has had numerous articles published on the Internet covering a wide range of topics. He studied electrical engineering after a tour of duty in the military, then became a freelance computer programmer for several years before settling on a career as a writer.
What Is E-4 Rank in the U.S. Army? (With Salary)
The branches within the United States Armed Forces have several different ranks, and each rank has its own pay grade and benefits. The most common rank held by members of the U.S. Army is that of a specialist E-4.
In this article, we explore what the E-4 rank is in the U.S. Army and its average pay grade, with a comparison of other U.S. Army ranks and how you can transition through each.
What is the E-4 rank in the U.S. Army?
The U.S. Army is currently made up of several different grades of specialists. The specialist category that a member of the U.S. Army is part of will dictate their pay grade and other factors related to their military career. A specialist E-4 is one of the most common ranks held in the U.S. Army and is the highest rank for junior enlisted recruits. The following are U.S. Army personnel who may be qualified to receive the E-4 rank:
- Those who have passed the Basic Leader Course
- Individuals who have been given lower-level supervisory duties
- Recruits who are entering the U.S. Army with a four-year college degree and who also possess civilian-acquired career skills
Most soldiers will enter into the U.S. Army as an E-1 and be promoted to E-4 as they make their way through the ranks. Before becoming an E-4, recruits must first be designated as a private and as a private first class. They may then be given the title of specialist E-4 or corporal, both of which hold the E-4 pay grade.
While both corporals and specialist E-4 U.S. Army members hold the same pay grade, the specialist E-4 designation is more common. This is because a specialist does not have command-related duties and is a commissioned officer. Corporals, on the other hand, often have command responsibilities and are non-commissioned officers.
Related:10 Best Jobs in the U.S. Army
Salary of E-4s in the U.S. Army
Members of the U.S. Army are compensated monthly based on their pay grade. The following are the typical salaries of E-4 specialists in the U.S. Army based on the years of experience they have:
- Two years or less of experience: $2,195 monthly basic pay, or around $26,340 per year
- More than two years of experience: $2,307 monthly basic pay, or around $27,684 per year
- More than three years of experience: $2,432 monthly basic pay, or around $29,184 per year
- More than four years of experience: $2,555 monthly basic pay, or around $30,660 per year
- More than six years of experience and beyond: $2,664 monthly basic pay, or around $31,968 per year
Basic pay is the primary component of a member of the military's income. All active members of the military receive monthly basic pay and it typically represents the largest portion of their take-home pay. The years served and pay grade or rank determine the basic pay a soldier will receive.
Related:All About the Branches of the U.S. Army: Descriptions and Roles
Different ranks in the Army
In addition to the E-4 specialist rank, there are 12 other ranks within the U.S. Army. The following are the currently recognized U.S. Army ranks divided into three primary divisions:
- Junior enlisted ranks
- Army non-commissioned officers
- Senior non-commissioned officers
Junior enlisted ranks
- Private E-1: This is the lowest U.S. Army rank and is typically given to recruits who are still in basic combat training. This rank may also be temporarily assigned to U.S. Army members following disciplinary action. The starting monthly basic pay for the E-1 rank is $1,733.10.
- Private Second Class E-2: This is the first promotion that U.S. Army members can be given once they have completed basic combat training. The starting monthly basic pay for the E-2 rank is $1,942.50.
- Private First Class E-3: This is the basic rank held by most soldiers in the U.S. Army workforce at the onset of their time in the military. This rank signifies the progression from apprentice to journeyman. The starting monthly basic pay for the E-3 rank is $2,042.70.
- Specialist E-4: As mentioned earlier, this rank is given to soldiers who hold a college degree and/or specialized training upon entering the U.S. Army.
Related:15 Different U.S. Army Military Occupational Specialties
Army non-commissioned officers
- Corporal E-4: This type of soldier receives the same pay grade as the specialist E-4 but is a non-commissioned officer in the U.S. Army and holds more responsibilities. To advance to this rank, unit commanders must have 26 months or more in the service as well as the appropriate security clearance.
- Sergeant E-5: Sergeants of the E-5 level are responsible for overseeing lower-ranking soldiers and their training and competencies. This is the first rank in which a soldier is considered an independent leader. The starting monthly basic pay for the E-5 rank is $2,467.50. Being promoted to sergeant is based on a point system that is awarded for various performances within the U.S. Army.
- Staff Sergeant E-6: The staff sergeant shares much of the same responsibilities as the sergeant, in addition to being accountable for a larger number of soldiers. The starting monthly basic pay for the E-6 rank is $2,693.70. To be eligible for this rank, candidates must receive a command recommendation and have 84 months of in-service time and 10 months of time-in-grade.
Senior non-commissioned officers
- Sergeant First Class E-7: This sergeant is referred to as a platoon sergeant and is a role typically held by soldiers with 15 or more years of experience in the military. The role of platoon sergeant is considered to be fundamental to the overall framework of the U.S. Army. The starting monthly basic pay for the E-7 rank is $3,114.30. Candidates must have a minimum of six years of time-in-service to be considered for this rank.
- Master Sergeant E-8: This type of sergeant is one of the highest levels of sergeants in the U.S. Army and holds a significant amount of responsibility. Master sergeants are the primary non-commissioned officers at the battalion level. The starting monthly basic pay for the E-8 rank is $4,480.20. Candidates must have a minimum of eight years of time-in-service to be considered for this rank.
- First Sergeant E-8: The first sergeant is still considered to be an E-8 rank but has more responsibilities than that of a master sergeant. First sergeants have significant leadership roles and are charged with advising the commander, assisting in recruit training, holding formations and overseeing platoon sergeants. Basic pay and candidacy qualifications for this rank are the same as for master sergeants.
- Sergeant Major E-9: Sergeant majors are the primary leaders within the U.S. Army and hold the greatest responsibility of all soldiers. The starting basic pay for this rank and the years of time-in-service are the same as for command sergeant majors.
- Command Sergeant Major E-9: Command sergeant major is the highest grade of rank that can be achieved aside from sergeant major of the U.S. Army. This rank requires the utmost level of leadership and independence and plays an important role in the non-commissioned officer sector of the U.S. Army. The starting monthly basic pay for the E-9 rank is $5,472.90. Candidates must have a minimum of nine years of time-in-service to be considered for this rank.
- Sergeant Major of the Army E-9S: This is the highest of all ranks that can only be held by one enlisted soldier at any given time. This rank brings the highest level of expertise and comes with the highest honors. The pay grade is also at the E-9 level.
Each sector and specialty within the U.S. Army is depicted by a unique insignia that soldiers wear on their uniforms to signify their titles and specialty. As a soldier advances through the ranks, they will be given more responsibility that may include overseeing hundreds or even thousands of soldiers. With each rank advancement, soldiers receive a pay increase.
Army e4 salary for
.Joining The Military As E-3 Or E-4.. Are You Treated Different at BCT - AYDMS
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