QPR manager Chris Ramsey says the club's "big-spending days" are over.
Several high-profile players left Loftus Road this summer following relegation from the Premier League, their second in three seasons.
Harry Redknapp, Ramsey's predecessor, described the club as a "soap opera" in April and has said many players earned "far too much money".
Ramsey, 53, told the BBC: "We have to get some good bargains and good characters or develop our own players."
In a wide-ranging interview with Football Focus - to be broadcast on BBC One on Saturday at 11:30 BST - he also discussed the future of in-demand striker Charlie Austin and the problems facing black managers.
'Some players could have helped us more'
Between May 2011 and January 2013 QPR signed 27 players under three different managers - Neil Warnock, Mark Hughes and Redknapp.
Ramsey was appointed permanent manager in May after filling the role since Redknapp's resignation in February, Les Ferdinand having taken over as head of football operations in October 2014.
"Unfortunately there's been a situation where the club has been taken advantage of at different times," Ramsey said.
"Bringing Les in to try and calm things down, make sure everything is done correctly, is a big move by the club.
|High-profile players to leave QPR this summer|
|Rio Ferdinand (retired)||Adel Taarabt (Benfica)|
|Joey Barton (released)||Shaun Wright-Phillips (New York Red Bulls)|
|Richard Dunne (released)||Bobby Zamora (Brighton)|
"We know there's been some players who could have helped us more.
"I must commend the players that were here last season who did actually try to keep us up. The players that are here really want to get back to the big time.
"The club realise that the big-spending days are behind us and we either have to get some good bargains and good characters or develop our own players."
Will Austin and Phillips be sold?
In July, QPR rejected a £12m bid from Leicester for striker Charlie Austin - their top scorer last term with 18 goals in the Premier League - while midfielder Matt Phillips has also been linked with West Brom and Crystal Palace.
Former Tottenham first-team coach Ramsey said: "The fact is the players who have been speculated about are good characters who worked their guts off in pre-season and they've kept focused.
"As you can see, Matty and Charlie, they're scoring goals and creating goals. They've been fantastic.
"Players may come in. We haven't made any offers on anyone at the moment and we've had no offers for those players either."
'We need to cut these barriers down'
Ramsey is one of only six black managers in charge of the 92 Premier League and Football League clubs.
Professional Footballers' Association chief executive Gordon Taylor has said football has a "hidden resistance" to appointing black managers, while the Football League said in June it was considering plans to increase those numbers.
Ramsey said: "I don't think it's a football problem. It's a problem of society.
|Black managers in top four English divisions|
|Chris Ramsey (QPR)||Chris Hughton (Brighton)|
|Ricardo Moniz (Notts County)||Chris Powell (Huddersfield)|
|Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink (Burton)||Keith Curle (Carlisle)|
"It's changing; probably it hasn't changed quickly enough. I'm hoping there's going to be some doors open for other people to come in.
"I'm not just talking about black coaches. I'm talking about people from all persuasions, and I'm talking about gender even. Why shouldn't there be a female coach in the dugout at some point?
"A coach with obvious disabilities or someone that's openly homosexual - why shouldn't that happen?
"We have to really cut all these barriers down and make it more of an equal opportunities issue than just about black coaches."
Watch Football Focus on BBC One on Saturday at 11:30 BST.