Steve Tilson has warned that Lincoln's budget next season could hinder their chances of an immediate Football League return.
Joe Anyon, Adam Watts, Josh O'Keefe, Gavin McCallum, Ali Fuseini and Mustapha Carayol have been placed on the transfer list in a bid to free up funds.
Even if some of the club's big earners were to leave, Tilson insists his war chest would sit in the lower half of the Blue Square Bet Premier's pay charts.
"The reason those six are on the transfer list is because they are on decent money - it has nothing to do with the fact I don't want them," Imps boss Tilson told the Lincolnshire Echo.
"The harsh truth is we can't afford them because they are on too much money for this club now we have been relegated.
"The budget has been cut and if they don't leave then I have to bring in another 12 players with a significant chunk of it already taken up. That's why it's such a huge task to win promotion next season.
"We will certainly have a go, that is without question, but our budget will be nowhere near Crawley's or Luton's. It will be so difficult, especially because I have no doubt my budget will be in the bottom half of the league."