Hi. Happy New Year.
I have a crazy question.
I recently became SAG-eligible.
I only make about $43,000 a year so my income doesn’t qualify me to get a loan for the initiation fee. Other than save, what are actors doing to pay the $3198 to join?
I guess if I had no bills or kids this wouldn’t be as hard to figure out.
Thank you for your time.
Congratulations on your union eligibility, Teresa! That’s great news! I checked out your IMDb and what I was *going* to say is actually something I’m still gonna say, but not necessarily to you. (So, hold tight. Advice for your specific situation in a moment.)
In checking out your IMDb, I saw that you have a lot of momentum brewing. You’ve been working quite a bit, and it’s not like the typical “I just got my eligibility” question I receive, which usually comes from someone who is just heartbeats away from making a Premature Move.
Many people who don’t yet have the money saved up to pay the SAG-AFTRA initiation fee ($3000 right now) are also not yet *ready* to join the union, even though they’re eligible to do so. So I say it’s a GOOD thing that they have time to save up while they continue to build relationships, do nonunion work (or work on those awesome projects on the lower-level union contracts that allow for both union and nonunion performers), amass great footage, and *then* join the union when both that bank account and the career trajectory support that decision.
But in your case — at least based on your credits at IMDb — you appear to be ready. All except the money. Now, according to SAG-AFTRA, there is no payment plan, there are no deductions from future earnings under union contracts, but there is that cool loan. You mentioned not qualifying for *a* loan, but I’m wondering if you tried the one offered by the AFTRA-SAG Federal Credit Union?
Their terms are incredibly reasonable and they’re very actor-friendly (obviously), so if you’ve not tried for that one, unless the reason you’re not qualifying for a loan is not due to your income level but due to bad credit or a bankruptcy, there’s a suggestion.
Truly, with the amount of acting work you’re doing, you should be able to save up for this soon. I know you have a family and other bills to pay, of course, but socking away $50 per week starting now, you’ll have the whole initiation fee by St. Patrick’s Day, 2016.
Yeah, that’s a long way off and yeah, that’s a lot of money to hide from yourself every week, but just working toward that (starting now) will begin to shift the energy toward more bookings and more opportunities and — believe it — more work that pays well enough to cover the fee in just a couple of days on set!
Obviously, if any of the brilliant readers of The Actors Voice have other suggestions on this, I’d love to hear ’em and I’ll share them in a future Your Turn so you can check out the goods.
I’m excited for you and I know that it’ll be the right and perfect time for you to end your nonunion status when the money shows up for it! The universe is magical that way! 🙂
Wanna be sure your tools *and* your mindset are in peak form before joining an actors union? Let us get you in gear with some FREE training right now!
Let’s DO this!
Originally published by Actors Access at http://more.showfax.com/columns/avoice/archives/001925.html. Please support the many wonderful resources provided by the Breakdown Services family. This posting is the author’s personal archive.