May 4, 2017

Players Struggle To Cope Financially With Nfl Lockout 2011

By Paul Hirsch

One of the oldest stories in sports is the one about a once-well-paid athlete facing financial ruin at the end of his playing career. Another version of that story is playing out now as a result of the NFL lockout 2011.

Casual fans may not be aware that players are paid thousands of dollars to show up for workouts at team facilities in the offseason. Players are also missing out on roster bonuses, free agent signing bonuses, and various conditioning incentives. And, in preparation for the NFL lockout 2011, the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) withheld royalty checks players are used to receiving for video games and football cards that display their likeness.

Not surprisingly, that missing money has exacerbated the typical players’ difficulty in managing his money well and is leading to financial woes for those who did not prepare, despite the sustenance checks the union is distributing from the withheld royalties.

According to Fox Sports, 958 of the 2,032 players who were on an active roster for at least one game last season qualify for the maximum $60,000 that will be offered starting April 15. The other 53 percent of those players will be limited to lesser amounts.

NFLPA player representative and ex-Bears linebacker Hunter Hillenmeyer said even athletes who are earning large salaries may have struggled managing their finances.

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“It’s no surprise pro athletes are not the best at saving money,” Hillenmeyer said Thursday. “Certainly, some guys do a better job than others. Everybody in professional sports makes a good living. The league minimum (salary) in all leagues is substantially more than the average American makes.

“I don’t expect any fan to feel bad. NFL players making $300,000 a year (the rookie minimum) should be able to live on it until next season starts.” Another blow, though, to the players’ financial welfare as a result of NFL lockout 2011 is that their health insurance premiums are no longer covered.

In a recent survey of health benefits through the COBRA organization estimated that a family policy is around $2400 per month. Normally during this off-season time the team that the player plays for would normally cover the health benefits. However, due to the NFL lockout 2011 all players are now required to fund their own health benefits which could be problematic.

The problem that arises in regards to these health benefits is that many of the football players apparently did not budget correctly, have not been paid or are ineligible for health benefits. The biggest concerns are for first-year players as they have not received any of their pay yet and are not eligible for COBRA since they have not started playing.

What are the solutions for those who did not plan for NFL lockout 2011? In some cases agents are lending clients up to $100,000. In other cases, financial advisors are opening lines of credit to help see players through this period. Those without collateral or strong credit ratings may face interest rates of up to 24 percent.

Borrowing just keeps players on a financial hamster wheel. It seems that pro athletes making $2 million can’t resist living like they’re making $4 million. And when the music stops and they cannot find a place to play either due to the end of their career or the NFL lockout 2011, they are unable to cope without an income to which they have become accustomed and that most Americans will never see or even dream about.

Should we feel sorry for that?

About the Author: Paul Hirsch is a writer for

; Regal Black Mens Magazine

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September 17, 2016

Buying A Car? Check Your Credit Score First

By Charles Essmeier

Do you check your credit score and credit report before you go shopping for a car? You might find out that it is well worth your while to do so, as some auto dealers are taking advantage of the fact that many consumers do not know their credit scores.

No one likes buying a car; the entire process is awkward and cumbersome. Most items we buy are plainly marked with the price, but with cars, the price is often a mystery. Then you have to haggle with a salesman and hope that you have worked out the best price possible. Having done that, you have to arrange financing. You can often get an acceptable interest rate when financing through the dealer, but some dealers are padding their bottom line by offering loans at higher rates than they otherwise might.

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The scam works like this You negotiate your best price with the dealer and you agree to finance through them. You fill out the credit application and hand it over to the salesman, who has promised you some reasonable terms. He takes off to process the application and to check your credit report while you have a cup of coffee. He returns a few minutes later, shaking his head. He informs you that your credit score is only 600 and that you will not qualify for the interest rate he offered you. He says that you will have to pay a higher rate. And not knowing any better, you agree.

Had you done your homework by checking your credit score ahead of time, you would have known your actual credit score and you could have pointed out that the salesman’s assessment of your credit score was incorrect. At that point, you could insist upon receiving the more favorable interest rate or threaten to finance elsewhere. This is a common scam that works because most people really do not know their exact credit score.

Learning your credit score is easy. All you have to do is visit the Websites of one of the three major credit bureaus Experian, Trans Union or Equifax. For a modest fee, you can receive a copy of your credit report with your credit score. Armed with this useful piece of information, you can shop for a car with a bit more peace of mind, knowing ahead of time whether or not you can qualify for the best financing.

About the Author: Copyright 2006 by Retro Marketing. Charles Essmeier is the owner of Retro Marketing. Retro Marketing, established in 1978, is a firm devoted to informational Websites, including

, a site devoted to automobile lemon laws.


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