Home Options and Decisions in Professional Sports
Rookie minimum salaries greatly affect home options and decisions in professional sports, a fact that is now being realized by members of the St. Louis Rams as they prepare to move to the greater Los Angeles area.
The general public has this romanticized view of professional sports figures with lavish houses and six cars in the garage, but the truth is that far more players make considerably less in salary and thus must be creative in their housing choices. No, we are not saying they live in poverty, but we are saying professional athletes, especially those playing on rookie contracts, have important decisions to make regarding short-term and long-term housing.
The minimum wage in Major League Baseball is a little over $507,000. In the NFL is is $435,000 and the NBA $535,000. Yes, that is a lot of money, but if you take a look at the housing market in some of the major sports cities in America, you’ll find homes easily over one million on average in the better neighborhoods. For a rookie, a million dollar home is simply out of his reach, especially if he does not have a guaranteed, long-term contract.
So many young players opt for leasing, at least for the first few years. Leasing a luxury apartment gives them the luxury they seek at a reasonable price, and also gives them the flexibility to move on and up as their financial situation stabilizes and improves.
Athlete relocation agents and luxury real estate agents are aware of this. If you have an agent who is pushing hard for you to buy a luxury home, and you don’t feel comfortable with that option, tell them you want to look at leasing, or change agents and find one who understands the leasing option and has a network of leasing options available.
There will be more than enough time for you to buy during your career. What you need to do, early on, is build your portfolio, stay healthy and live within your means.
Sports Relocation, Inc assists players/coaches of all professional sports leagues including the NBA, WNBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, and entertainers relocate nationwide by servicing their Real Estate & Relocation needs. Ikem Chukumerije is licensed to practice real estate in New York, California, Nevada, Florida, & Georgia. Sports Relocation, Inc operates nationwide and provides elite athlete relocation services in all 50 states and internationally.