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New Homes for Sale Near Eglin Air Force Base | Florida

Eglin AFB, located near the Gulf of Mexico in Okaloosa, is one of the great places to relocate to Florida. The 464,000-acre site in Okaloosa County is just 4.8 kilometers from Niceville and Fort Walton Beach.

The air force wing provides weapons and ordinance support for air deployment operations worldwide. The 96th Air Base Wing, which reports to the Air Force Material Command, is in charge of the base. The 46th Test Wing, an additional resident unit, helps with the tasks.

Most people contemplating a move here already know about the famous Emerald Coast. Thousands of tourists visit this area each year for the crystal-clear ocean, fine sand beaches, world-class restaurants, and thrilling attractions.

But with Eglin as your permanent base, your stay here will be more than just a week of sunbathing. Years of fun and excitement lie ahead as well!

The living expenses are pretty low, given everything this place offers. Compared to most other parts of the state, the cost of living here is lower.

For example, the average home in Niceville costs $229,800, compared to $407,700 statewide. Health care prices, child care costs, food costs, tax rates, and transportation costs are also lower.

Also, thanks to the absence of income and state taxes, Floridians enjoy a more significant portion of their earnings.

Here is a brief overview of the top neighborhoods near Eglin Air Force Base and what it's like to live here.

About Eglin Air Force Base

Eglin Air Force Base is between Panama City and Pensacola in Okaloosa County.

The central unit at the facility, the 96th Test Wing, is in charge of developing and assessing air-delivered munitions, navigation and guidance systems, AFSOC technologies, and command and control systems.

The base is also home to the 46th Test Wing. This unit tests and evaluates guidance technologies, bombs, missiles, and weapons systems. The military can evaluate weapon systems of all destructiveness safely. The base's access to 130,000 square miles of airspace over the ocean makes it ideal for this function.

In addition, Eglin Air Force Base is home to a few top-tier training initiatives. The site houses the Navy School of Explosive Ordinance Disposal and the region where the 6th Ranger Brigade completes its Army Ranger Bootcamp.


Eglin AFB was founded in 1935 with the name Valparaiso Bombing and Gunnery Base. During its first seven years, the station served as a training center for the Army Air Corps. Later, in 1942, it was repurposed as an Army Air Corps weapons center and testing site.

After World War II, the facility was renamed Eglin Air Force Base in memory of Lieutenant Colonel Frederick I. Eglin, who lost his life in 1937 when the Northrop A-17 aircraft he was traveling in crashed between Langley and Maxwell Field, Alabama.

In reaction to Soviet threats during the Cold War, the facility was charged with creating, managing, and testing warheads. The facility later became a leader in developing new missile techniques and technologies. Ten distinct fields were built at the base over the following several years for testing new flight systems and training tactics.

The fields are scattered throughout the base and are still in operation today. They feature engravings showcasing the names of US war heroes from various eras.

If you want to learn more about military aircraft, this base offers various opportunities thanks to daily in-and-out flight activities.

What types of aircraft operate from Eglin AFB?

Most of the aircraft flying out of and into Eglin AFB are F-35s. However, a wide range of aircraft can be seen due to the nearby Hurlburt Field and the regular participation of various other units. These include:

  • CV-22 Osprey
  • U-28A
  • U-28A
  • MQ-9 Reaper
  • MC-130H Combat Talon II
  • AC-130U Spooky Gunship
  • AC-130J Ghostrider Gunship

Housing and Neighborhoods

Towns and beautiful communities of all sizes surround the base. All service members and airmen from E1 to General Grade Officers can live on base in one of the over 2,359 housing units, ranging from two to four-bedroom units. You can, however, opt to live off base with other civilians.

If you travel southwest from the station along Eglin Parkway for only a little while, you'll reach the towns of Fort Walton Beach, Shalimar, Cinco Bayou, and Ocean City. Fort Walton Beach is primarily a famous residence for military families since it's close to the base and the beach.

For those seeking a more rural experience, the towns of Navarre and Mary Esther are located on the west side of the base. You can also live in Destin, south of the AFB, past Choctawhatchee Bay. Alternatively, you can forgo beach views in favor of a possibly larger property in Crestview, giving you more room to stretch.

What it's like to live off the base

Eglin has a lot to offer, including a great climate, stunning scenery, beaches, museums, delicious food, and various other attractions. Furthermore, you may enjoy it all without going over budget thanks to the low cost of living.

The area around the AFB is known for its contrasting scenery. You will encounter Spanish moss, oak trees, and pine forests as you enter the area. However, when you travel deeper south, you come across white beaches.

The climate at Eglin Air Force Base is classified as subtropical and humid. Despite an annual rainfall of up to 60 inches, most days are bright and humid. You'll see the phrase "welcome to paradise" on many placards due to the adjacent gorgeous beaches and the excellent weather.

Things to Do Near Eglin AFB

The mild Eglin weather all year makes outdoor pursuits and adventures delightful, even in the winter. While you'll presumably save your sunbathing for summertime, winter is seldom too cold to abandon a fishing adventure, a trek, or a stroll outside.

Some of the top activities for families near Eglin AFB include:

  • Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park - This stop will be on your list of enjoyable things to do again because it offers a fresh, authentic experience and the opportunity to engage with marine life. Take your fam along for fun.

  • Wild Willy's Adventure Zone - Are you looking for a location with an exhilarating rope race course, go-kart races, and bumper boats to splash in? Check out Wild Willy's, and you won't be disappointed.

  • Air Force Armament Museum - This is the world's only museum that focuses on preserving and displaying Air Force Armament relics and memorabilia.

  • The Island Pier - There is no better spot to relax and take in the spectacular sunset than on this pier, which extends over 1,200 feet into the renowned Gulf of Mexico.

  • Big Kahunas - While most beaches are only fantastic during the summer, Big Kahuna's understands how to keep the fun going. It's difficult to top an adventurous day at this beach, which features a lazy river, Kowabunga Racer, the Honolulu Half Pipe, and more.

  • Eglin's Outdoor Recreation Center - This center, open every day of the week, is situated on Okaloosa Island, west of the renowned Destin Bridge. You may go snorkeling, paddleboarding, horseback riding, skydiving, etc. Only military individuals and their families can enter; you'll need a valid military or DoD ID.

  • Airforce Museums - Two enormous military museums are housed here - the Hurlburt Field Memorial Air Park and the Air Force Armament Museum, with scores of military weaponry and aircraft displays. If you're visiting Pensacola, you can visit these museums because they are nearby.

Small model home and house word written on wooden cube

Weekend getaways

Speaking about Pensacola, this popular vacation destination is excellent for a quick day outing or a weekend escape if you wish to enjoy the lively local culture. It's only 45 minutes west of the Air Force base and teeming with activity.

It features a lively downtown, top-notch dining establishments like McGuire's Irish Pub & Brewery and the Global Grill, and historical attractions that will fill your days.

Another excellent destination for a day trip is Destin, situated east of the air force base. Thanks to the many excellent local restaurants, fantastic beaches, and sprawling malls, it makes for a fantastic outing.


Eglin Elementary School is the only elementary school on Eglin Air Force Base. If a military family lives outside the Eglin school district, they can request that their child attend this school.

There are many other schools outside the base. Depending on your location, you can fall within either of the following school districts:

Santa Rosa County School District (SRCSD)

This school district covers Gulf Breeze, Pensacola, Pace, and Milton. 65 % of students in SRCSD elementary schools show proficient-level reading skills, and 67 % perform comparably well in math.

Additionally, 56 % of pupils in middle school boast proficient-level reading skills, and 59 % score above that level in math. For high schoolers, 62 % have proficient-level reading skills, and 60 % perform comparably in math. The student-to-teacher ratio is 18:1, which is lower than the state average.

Some of the best SRCSD schools near the Eglin base include:

  • Bennett Russell
  • Holley-Navarre Intermediate
  • Gulf Breeze
  • Dixon Primary
  • Central School
  • Capstone Academy, Milton Campus
  • Capstone Academy, Pensacola Campus

Okaloosa County School District (OKCSD)

This school district covers Mary Esther, Fort Walton Beach, Hurlburt Field, Shalimar, Destin, and Niceville. It features a liaison program for families with military ties to help them overcome barriers to their children's effective school transition and education.

The school district is recognized as a high-performing school district. Over 60 % of pupils across all grades have proficient reading and math skills, and the typical student-to-teacher ratio is 17 to 1.

Some of the top OKCSD schools near Eglin AFB are:

  • Baker School, K-12
  • Bluewater Elementary School
  • Edge Elementary School
  • Fort Walton Beach High School
  • Northwest Florida Ballet Academie

Best cities and neighborhoods to live near Eglin AFB

There are various beautiful neighborhoods to reside in if you receive PCS orders or decide to relocate to Eglin AFB.

Fort Walton Beach

Fort Walton Beach is ideally situated close to the beach, southwest of the AFB. It is one of Florida's best locations to live. Residents of Fort Walton Beach enjoy a dense suburban atmosphere, low living expenses, and low tax rates (zero states and Social Security income taxes). It's only a few minutes from Destin, offering access to a vibrant beach scene, music venues, nightclubs, fine restaurants, low- to high-end shopping, etc.

Typical New Home for Sale Near Eglin Air Force Base prices start at $259,505 in Regency Park and $653,804 in Briggs Manor. The average price is $349,004. However, you can buy a fixer-upper for way less and restore it to a liveable condition. The population primarily comprises seniors and working professionals, and it leans conservative.

Several public schools are located in this community, with students showing above-proficient math and reading skills.


Niceville is nestled on Bobby Bayou, just a short drive from the Northwest Florida State College and the Destin/Fort Walton Beach International Airport. This city, formerly named Boggy, is home to slightly under 13,000 inhabitants. It's perfect for nature lovers and those who love the feel of a quiet, small American town.

It overlooks Choctawhatchee Bay, offering various water activities and magnificent sunset and sunrise views. Other beaches near this community include Grayton Beach, Henderson Beach State Park, and Seagrove Beach.

The median cost of New homes for sale near Eglin Air Force Base here is $229,800, while the monthly rent is $1,100. There are no state or income taxes for the locals, just like the rest of the state.


Crestview, on the northern side of Eglin AFB, offers the most bang for your buck. Its convenient location near Destin, Pensacola, and the Alabama border offer families a tranquil rural atmosphere while presenting a wide range of alternatives for a last-minute getaway.

You can escape to Destin or any of the various beaches along the 30A, renowned for their lovely white sand and crystal-clear waters, which present magnificent sunrises and sunsets. Alternatively, check out Orange Beach, just a few minutes away in Alabama.

Crestview New homes for sale near Eglin Air Force Base are 25 % less expensive than others throughout the state. A three-bedroom, two-bathroom property with more than 1700 square feet has a median list price of $301 803. However, information from the previous two years shows that the typical sales price for a four-bedroom, two-bathroom property with more than 1800 square feet was $275,000.

As a result, given the state of the market, you should prepare to spend about $300,000 on your typical-sized property. Nevertheless, Crestview's cost of living is 10 % lower than the state average, luring those looking to live within walking distance of Florida's most stunning beaches.

Schools are highly rated, too, with Liza Jackson Preparatory, Northwest Florida Ballet Academie, and Collegiate High School being the top choices for most parents.

Mary Esther

Mary Esther is sandwiched between Hurlburt Field and Eglin Air Force Base in northwest Florida. It's close to Navarre, Destin, and Fort Walton Beach, allowing residents to enjoy the feel of a small town while also offering fantastic getaway options in the bigger cities.

It's a great community to raise a family, thanks to the serene environment and highly-rated schools. The graduation rate is 6 % higher than the national and state averages.

There are numerous different communities. You can select from waterfront properties, newly built properties, renovated properties, etc. The houses here are a little bit larger with more oversized lots, and the median New homes for sale near Eglin Air Force Base price here is around $245,000, providing the most bang for your buck.

Fixer-uppers start as low as $80,000 if you're searching for something more affordable, but you'll have to take care of the repairs yourself. Seaside properties make for excellent "staycations" because of their proximity to the beach. Also, flood insurance isn't a must-have here, thanks to the area's designation as Zone X.


Along Florida's emerald coast, Eglin AFB is surrounded by great neighborhoods and cities. The base has various housing options for military personnel, but the neighboring areas also have various options for those looking to live off base.

If you're considering moving to this beautiful area, we'll be happy to offer some advice to make the home-hunting process for new homes for sale near Eglin Air Force Base easier. Don't hesitate to contact us about moving to the Emerald Coast.

With over 50 years of mortgage industry experience, we are here to help you achieve the American dream of owning a home. We strive to provide the best education before, during, and after you buy a home. Our advice is based on experience with Phil Ganz and Team closing over One billion dollars and helping countless families.

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