Location Scout Resource: Property Owner Info

Location Scout Resource: Property Owner Info

Location Scout Resource: Property Owner Info

Very necessary information that you need to know if you are considering making your property available as a location for film, photo or video shoots.



In a nutshell, we provide location scout services for photo, film, tv video shoot and event planning productions. You should read this as well.


Please be sure you really want to do this.

If you saw / heard on tv or read in a magazine that you could get your house into movies / “easy, fast money” / no effort required on your part and this is your motivation for being here, you are on the wrong web site, barking up the wrong tree. There is just simply more to it than that.

If are genuinely interested in learning about and participating in the process of creation of many types of visual media, meeting the people involved and helping them solve some of the challenges they are faced with by sharing your property, having some fun and possibly even picking up a few bux along the way, then read on!


a. IMPORTANT BEFORE you list your property, you MUST tell us if:

1. your property is currently for sale and likely to be sold in the near future

2. your property is a temporarily vacant rental property or otherwise not likely to be available for shoots for the extended future

b. IMPORTANT AFTER you list your property, you MUST tell us if:

1. you sell your property or it otherwise becomes unavailable for the extended future

2. you make significant changes to the property, i.e. major repainting, remodelling, refurnishing, etc.

c. We create a digital photo portfolio of your location property based on photos you send us.

We cannot market your property without photos of your property. We do not provide a photography service for you for the purpose of the promotion of your property, providing initial photos of your property is a required commitment on your part. Go here for tips on photographing your property.

We do not charge you to list with us, nor do we require to be your exclusive representative, however, just so there is no misunderstanding, supplying us with photos does not constitute an agreement or promise from us to list or promote your property nor do we make any promise that your property will ever be used or that you will ever earn any money. We also reserve the right to refuse to list or promote any property for any reason without need for explanation or notice.

Again, on the other hand, we get all kinds of requests for all kinds of locations so, as long as you seem like a nice person, who is responsible and eager to work cooperatively with others, we don’t often refuse location listing requests.

Please note your personal information such as your name, address, phone number and email are kept confidential so that your privacy is protected. We work very hard to screen parties unknown to us and will always contact you with information regarding the nature of interest in your property. We obtain your permission prior to allowing access, and only then thru us, to your personal information and/or property. Your personal information is never published in connection with any images of your property.


a. You are never required to accept any booking request, however, once you have committed to a project for which use of your property has been requested, a considerable amount of man-hours / production/prep time involving considerable expense will be planned with your property in mind. You will be expected to stand by your commitment and will be required to sign a legally binding location agreement contract (example) as well as a property release (example).

Please do not propose use of any property you do not have the clear legal authority to give permission in writing for access to and publication of images of same.

  • – If you are a tenant / renter, is your landlord willing to sign in writing that permission for access to the property and publication of images of the property is granted?
  • – If you live (or work / have a business) in a condominium or coop building are there any rules or by-laws that might prohibit or restrict you from hosting a photo or film shoot? Do you have the authority to allow the visiting crew access to the elevator(s) / lobby(s) / hallway(s) or other common areas? Are there any curfews? Elevator hours? How might your neighbors be affected if you host a photo or film shoot? ANY restrictions or potential issues need to be spelled out *upfront*.
  • – Does your town / locality have photo / film permit requirements? Are there fees? Town Clerk’s office or other local government administration office will have any info you need.

b. We are an agent and our job is to be the point person btn you and production. If there is ever a question that needs answering or a problem to be discussed, please speak with us, not the client. Please do not ever discuss business, money or policy directly with our clients.

We work very hard to create opportunities for production and property owners and the most efficient way of maintaining an environment of cooperation and decorum and keeping priorities and emotions in perspective is for a 3rd party to be involved, which is where we come in. We strive to be an attentive, confidential ear and sounding board for you (as well as production) to ask us any questions or express any concerns you may have as well as act a mediator with the greater good at heart. We have years of production business experience behind us enabling us to discuss production-related matters with a production client on an advanced level, then communicate with you about the same matter as it may concern you in terms you can easily understand, so if you would like to work with us you will have to agree to let us “do the talking” with the client.

c. How much money can I make?

The desired result is always an agreement btn everyone to a location deal which leaves you feeling like you are being compensated satisfactorily for your participation, yet is affordable for production. There as many types of productions as you can imagine with just as wild a range of budgets, so there are no set fees, each location deal is custom-negotiated. The “right” amount to charge is, as stated above, an amount that lets you feel like your involvement will be worth your while and amount that production can afford. Sometimes the shoe fits, sometimes it doesnt.

Here’s a tip: Dont EVER try to use the “well my neighbors got $X for doing a shoot” as a negotiating tactic, it’s usually like comparing apples to oranges. EVERY production and budget is different. You can ask for whatever fee you like, including whatever the amount was you may have received the last time (if you have done shoots before) but please dont ever dream there is any kind of “location price list”. It just doesnt exist.

Again if it is just “all about you”, then you are on the wrong web page. Production requires lots of communication and cooperation by everyone, and the best productions and location deals are those in which everybody “plays nice”. A spirit of cooperation and everyone working for the mutual benefit of all involved goes a long ways in the production business.

d. How do we make money?

We do not charge you in any way for your participation on your behalf. We employed by Production to acquire location resources on their behalf, performing for them a a variety of services, including but not limited to research, file searches, location scouting and location management. Once verbal agreements are reached, you will be presented with a written contract. Once the location contract is signed by all parties, the “deal” will be complete. The location contract will be a legally binding document; all signed parties will be expected to honor the location contract and act in ways that are in accordance with same.

e. How much do we charge?

Since we don’t charge you, we feel this is a private matter between us and our employer / client.


a. Once a client shows interest in the photos of your location we will call you to:

1. give you what details we have and find out if your property might be available.

2. discuss fees, restrictions, rooms to use, etc.

3. set up a time for the client to come and do an initial “go see.” Sometimes a client might hire us to do this for them or ask us to accompany them.


a. The scouting crew may involve the photographer, director, producer, client or other members of the creative team as needed.

b. No fees are paid to homeowners for scouting, (clients may scout many locations, so ‘scouting’ does not mean it is a booking.)

c. Scouting may sometimes become an inconvenience. Please be prepared to be called often at this point, this is a part of the process of renting your location. It is a way for clients to “shop” for the right location for their shoot.

d. For film or TV, the scouting process can be more complex. Initially, a film scout will generally come to your location and take photos. After that if there is still serious interest then the director, producer and or client, etc. may wish to come. Finally, once the client confirms a booking for your location they will have to scout one more time for what is called a ‘tech scout’ (entails 1.5 hrs of time and a team of maybe 10 – 20 people, depending on shoot size).


a. Length of Shoot day(s): usually have duration of 8 to 10 hours. A price will be negotiated for either an 8 or 10 hour day. The shoot may go over this amount of time, and will earn you overtime.

b. Crews & Cast: crews are usually small, approximately 6 – 12 people, plus talent (this varies, but usually 1 – 3 models)

c. Equipment: most are minimal, trolley to hold cameras, 2 – 4 cameras, lights (sometimes use film lights), 2 – 3 cases of equipment, plus wardrobe, hair & makeup gear, propping and other equipment; varies per shoot.

d. Vehicles: may involve a motorhome or van, crew members may arrive in personal cars but huge equipment trucks are not usually present.


a. Length of Shoot day(s): 12 – 16 hrs (sometimes longer)

b. Crew Size: 30 – 60 people (low budget productions may be much smaller.)

c. Cast Size: varies according to script and number of scenes.

d. Equipment: can be very extensive, depending upon the type of production, however, a typical shoot may contain: dolly, video village, tracking, 35 mil camera, many lights, lots of cables, many crates, cranes, etc

e. Vehicles: varies but there are quite a few vehicles, i.e.: catering truck, grip truck, equipment truck, and possibly many more

NOTE: Film & TV shoots can be very large, take over your home completely as well as the street. They are respectful, protect the homes completely and discuss all they will be doing prior to the shoot. Often we will arrange a site rep to assist the homeowner on shoot days for large or complicated shoots.


a. Once fees are negotiated and agreed upon, changes may not be made unless client adds days, hours, or other major changes and such changes (including fee matters) must be agreed upon by all parties.

b. Overtime is usually paid within 2 business days after the shoot, although some magazines have a waiting period of 2 – 3 wks.

c. We are your agents and our business is to take care of our location owners. Please allow us to do all negotiating regarding rates and do not discuss business matters with clients.

d. All fees are discussed >per shoot, thus we will never quote a client a fee unless you, as location owner have agreed to said fees.

FINAL STEPS (all prior to shoot date):

a. A contract is signed by the client (we will provide you, the location owner, with a copy if you wish.)

b. Our office receives a certificate of insurance from the client. Without insurance no shoot will be allowed to proceed. If no insurance is produced, the client forfeits all monies paid for the rental of your location.

c. R. Richard Hobbs receives the rental fee and a check is forwarded to the location owner.

d. An approximate start time is confirmed (*sometimes a crew may encounter traffic or other problems but will advise in such case)


a. If your space is in an apartment building, co-op, or other communal situation, it is imperative that you find out whether shooting will, in fact, be permitted, acceptable to neighbors, etc. This is extremely important both for you, the goodwill of those surrounding you and to our clients. Please discuss your desire to host shoots with your condo/coop board/ building management or landlord as well your neighbors, local government and law enforcement and if exists, your local film office BEFORE contacting us.

b. Part of the process of renting your location is us calling to see if your location is available during on the date(s)the client needs. If your space is available and you are interested we may ask to put a “hold” on your space until the client decides where they wish to shoot. Remember, clients may be looking at many location possibilities at this stage. Sometimes, other location agencies may call you with the same request. In this case, you need to give the first location company which calls for a given date the first “hold,” the second company the second hold and so on.

c. Please remove any personal property prior to the shoot that is of special importance, irreplaceable, precious, etc. We cannot guarantee that accidents won’t happen. You will of course be compensated, but some things just are not replaceable.

d. Please ensure that your space is clean and tidy for the shoot.

e. Clients may occasionally come to you directly wishing to rent your space by bypassing our company. We try very hard to screen out the dirtbags, but occasionally one slips by us. We always appreciate knowing if someone has approached you directly so we can bill them for use of our resources and advise them they are making unauthorized use of your private information, so please let us know if any client of ours ever approaches you directly. Remember, you are on your own in such case of you decide to deal with people like this directly yourself. You won’t have the benefit of our contracts, longstanding relationships with clients, etc., to protect you in case something goes wrong. Rental fees may also be sub par in such cases. At the bottom of it all, it’s just not right.

f. Clients will often present you with a property release (example) contract to sign that is separate from our contract. This is normally just written permission from you to them indicating that you have in fact given them permission to depict your property in a published work. If you are in fact presented with any additional documents or contracts to sign, we are here to help and advise you. That’s our job. Please call us with any questions.

g. Please advise asap us if you make significant stuctural/design/decorating changes to your property (or if you move!). Our clients rely on the location portfolios we create and obviously, if you redecorate, paint, subdivide or make any other substantial changes, your pictures will be out of date. Please let us know so we can update our files.


a. Most shoots involve a caterer, who will need a place to set up. Same for the hair and makeup departments. If a stylist is present, they will also require an area to work from.

b. Expect pieces of equipment to be set up and moved throughout your space. Expect furniture to be moved around. Expect furniture to be used as props within a shot. This is, after all, why the client chose to shoot in your space and not in a studio.


a. If damage occurs, >do not attempt to fix it: photograph it, advise us ASAP and we will get the client’s insurance to fix it.

b. On the day of the shoot, make sure to go through the house with the production person in charge to note any existing damage and again at the end of the shoot to see if there is any new damage. In such case we have 24 hrs to advise the client.

c. For film and TV shoots, floors and walls are protected with upsom board and corrugated board; cables are wrapped as well. Again, if you wish something to receive extra protection, just let the person in charge know your needs.

d. Expect normal wear and tear if you rent your space frequently.


a. At the start of the shoot, you must go through the whole space with the head of production. This is to note and record any existing damage.

b. At the end of the shoot you will repeat the process. We only have 24 hrs to report damages to the client. Remember, if you have precious antique runners etc., >before< the shoot is the time to tell the crew that protection is needed. We demand the client’s crew to respect your space but we can’t ask them to read your mind. For renting your space to be profitable for all parties, good communication is a MUST. As always, just pick up the phone and call us if you have any questions.

By clicking on the link below you certify that you have read, understand and agree to the terms stated above.

I want to list my location!

R. Richard Hobbs Film Location Services

Photograph Your property for Use by  Location Scouts!

Photograph Your property for Use by Location Scouts!

Property Owners: Location Scout Location Photography Tips and Best Practices

Some Hands-on Tips for Photographing Your Property for Location Scouting

Location Scout Resource: List Location

Location Scout Resource: List Location

Location Scout Resource: List Location

Google Answers has a great thread full of info useful if you are interested in having your property used for movies, film and photo and want to know who to contact:

Google Answers – Subject: rental property for movies and tv commercials

Category: Arts and Entertainment | Asked by: cuccina-ga | Google Answers: rental property for movies and tv commercials: Q: rental property for movies and tv commercials ( Answered, 0 Comments )

Question | Subject: rental property for movies and tv commercials | Category: Arts and Entertainment | Asked by: cuccina-ga | List Price: $10.00 Posted: 29 Jan 2004 19:24 PST | Expires: 28 Feb 2004 19:24 PST | Question ID: 301666

Location Scout Resource: List Location – Who Can I Contact to List My Location?

Who to contact to rent your home to production companies for movies or commericals

Answer | Subject: Re: rental property for movies and tv commericals | Answered By: bobbie7-ga on 29 Jan 2004 21:13 PST

Hi Cuccina! How to get your home in the movies:

  • Secure Production Permission – Make sure that production is allowed in your neighborhood. If it is:
  • Contact your state or local film commission. They’ll help you get your home on the market for shoots. Or
  • Get in touch with a location agent.

read the rest

California Film Commission

California Film Commission

CA Film Howto: Market Your Film Location

Specific to California residents but likely useful to property owners nationwide:

California Film Commission: How to Market Your Property

In an effort to assist property owners who wish to rent out their home or business to motion picture production companies, the California Film Commission (CFC) has prepared the following information to help you promote your property. These are some ideas to think about before you get started.

read the rest

New Hampshire Film and Television Office

New Hampshire Film and Television Office

Property Owner’s Guide to Filming Locations

New Hampshire Film & Television Office | A Property Owner’s Guide to Filming Locations (pdf) | From the New Hampshire Film & Television Office | What you need to know when a production company comes calling

Significant dollars are added to the state’s economy each year by film and video production companies and commercial still photographers who choose to work in New Hampshire. One of the ways those production dollars get into New Hampshire’s economy is via the fees paid to private property owners for use of locations.

While written specifically for New Hampshire property owners, this guide is pretty universal, chocked full useful information for anyone with an interest in having their property used for film, tv / video, photo or even events.

NH Film’s Property Owner’s Guide to Filming Locations is highly recommended reading so I will be adding a link on the Location Scout R. Richard Hobbs – FAQs Page on nyc.locationscout.us

New York Times

New York Times

Your Property as a Film / Photo / Video Location

…or… A New York Times Article Every Film Potential Location Property Owner Should Read

NY Times | Lights! Camera! Ka-Ching! | By VIVIAN S. TOY

NEW YORKERS love to complain about television or film crews that descend on their neighborhoods, gobbling up parking spaces, crowding the sidewalks and generally disrupting daily life.

But some people aren’t complaining. They are the ones who are renting their apartments and houses to those crews, and making $500 to $10,000 a day, depending on the size and duration of a production…

…The movie and television production industry is big business in New York City, generating about $5 billion in the local economy each year, according to the Mayor’s Office of Film, Theater and Broadcasting

…As a final word of caution, Ms. Gordon of AKA Locations said that homeowners often come to the business a bit starry-eyed and that she often tries to lift that veil of fantasy a bit.

“They need to be prepared to be invaded and not expect to make too much money,” she said. “And once you sign on for it, you have to let go and let it happen, because once you let them into your house, they’re not leaving until they’re finished.”

read the entire article



Location Scout Tip: eHow – How to Rent Your Home for a Movie or Catalog Shoot

By eHow Personal Finance Editor

Lights, camera, paycheck! Getting your home in a movie, on TV or in the next glitzy housewares catalog can be fun and pull in some cash to boot. But there are issues to bear in mind, not only to increase the chances of making your home a star, but to protect it in the process.

now that's an idea!


It certainly does not hurt to get to know a location scout, production company and / or film commission


California Film Commission: Your home in a Starring Role (pdf)

In an effort to assist property owners who wish to rent out their home or business to motion picture production companies, the California Film Commission (CFC) has prepared the following information to help you promote your property. These are some ideas to think about before you get started.



Movie Locations at Amazon