Thinking of becoming a shoot location owner?

Have you ever found yourself wondering about the houses you see on screen, or in your favourite magazine? ‘Where do they find them?’ ‘Is it just a set, or an actual home?’ At Locate, we use real houses owned by real people for our shoots, and are always open to discovering new locations to add to our location library.

If you’re curious about how it all works, or would like to register your own home with us, read on…

Being a shoot location owner can be extremely rewarding. Not only are you allowing yourself the opportunity to generate income from your property, you’re opening yourself up to meeting talented cast and crew members, and to seeing what goes on behind the scenes at a shoot. No two shoots are the same, and while there will of course be the more every-day shoots, the excitement that accompanies a day on set with a much loved household brand is incomparable. Not to mention the perk of possibly becoming a temporary home to leading talent – Andrex puppies, for example, or George Clooney and his beloved Nespresso.

     Adam Hinton for Natwest                                                                                          Tim Marsella for No Added Sugar

Meeting the criteria

While every property is unique and beautiful in its own right, not every property is suitable as a location. For this reason, we can’t guarantee inclusion within our location library to everyone that gets in touch.

As a rough guideline, our ideal property features the following:

  • Open plan space. This allows room for multiple camera angles, movement of equipment and a bigger crew
  • Good accessibility. Crews will often be bringing along heavy equipment, so a 10th floor flat with no lift access would prove problematic!
  • Good parking, either on the driveway, or nearby. Cannot be on a red route

If your property fits this outline, you may be perfect for us. Don’t worry if you’re unsure, though, or have something a little more unusual, we always assess on a case by case basis.

What to expect from a day on set?

If we do confirm a shoot with you, please be aware of the following:

  • No two shoots are the same, so your experience with one client may differ from your experience with another
  • Changes may be made to your home – often you won’t recognise your own home when used in a campaign. Our team are with you every step of the way, however, and will always ensure you are happy with certain changes being made. Upon leaving, crews will reinstate the property, so it is left as they found it
  • Crew numbers will vary greatly dependent on the style of the shoot – TV shoots will require more hands than an editorial shoot, for example. We will work with you to determine what you’re comfortable with
  • The possibility of 12 hour days, sometimes more (sometimes less!)
  • We ensure the client provides pubic liability insurance, in case of accidents. We advise that valuables be put aside, to avoid any upset should a breakage occur. While accidents are rare, they do sometimes happen – any issues will be fully dealt with by our team, in a way that you are happy with
  • When a client has hired your home, they will need access to it as pre-agreed. This doesn’t mean you can’t be at home, it just means the client will expect free reign in the agreed areas

While some enquiries can be slow moving and may not result in a confirmed booking, others will be keen to begin within a few days, or even that afternoon – we will always keep you informed throughout the process, so there will be no surprises.

What our location owners have to say

Sara – Location #8136

“Now that our kids are a bit older, it was time for me to think about going back to work. However, being a location owner allowed me to stay at home and keep on top of looking after the house and garden whilst still earning an income.

Working with Locate has been such a pleasure. Both Jo and Katie are always fun and friendly but also incredibly professional, offering advice and guidance where needed and dealing with any issues (which are rare) post shoot. I would really recommend Locate to anyone who is thinking of using their house for shoots.”

Jim – Location #4734

“I retired a while ago and was pleasantly surprised by what I can earn per day from a shoot. The cast and crew from Locate are always cheerful and friendly, and I enjoy seeing how it all happens behind the scenes.

The most challenging aspect of hiring out my home is when the shoots go into overtime and need the house for 12 hours or more. Locate will ensure payment for overtime, though, so I can’t complain!”

Get in touch

To speak to a member of our team about becoming a shoot location owner, send us an e-mail at locate@locateproductions.com or call us on 0207 978 1688.

We look forward to hearing from you!

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We caught up with the owner of one of our favourite locations, Brown House, for an insight into her experience of recently hosting a multi-media shoot during lockdown.

What were your initial thoughts when you were asked to host a shoot during lockdown?

Personally I was happy with the idea, however some of the family were concerned about strangers coming into the house who might bring infection, so we thought about it quite a bit. It made an important difference that the shoot was in the garden rather than in the house.

What were your main concerns ahead of the shoot?

The shoot itself was to be outside, but of course the crew would need access to the kitchen and the loo, so would not be entirely outside. The main concern was if the crew were not careful, they could inadvertently bring infection into the house. They were reassuring that they would be very restricted where they went and we decided we would disinfect the surfaces in the kitchen and the loos after everyone had left.

How did the experience of this shoot differ to pre-pandemic shoots?

Everyone was absolutely delightful, as always! On the recces, everyone wore masks, used hand sanitiser and kept their distance. They spent very little time inside the house, for instance they waited for each other and talked outside, rather than all being in the house at the same time.

How was your experience while the shoot was happening?

I was in the house to start with, but out for most of the day. The team were thoughtful, for instance they suggested opening up the side gates to give most people direct access to the garden, which limited the number of people who needed to come into the house. And they brought a winnebago, which was used as a green room instead of using a room in the house. During the day, someone needed to make a call – rather than just go ahead and use the study, they phoned me to ask if it would be OK for that person to sit in the study to make that call, which of course was fine.

Did you feel that the Covid-19 safety precautions put in place by the production were adequate?

Yes, very much so. Everyone was wearing masks, including outside even though it was hot. Most or all people were outdoors most or all of the time, they set up tents outside, so there were just a few people in the kitchen. Covid warning signs were also put up,  reminding everyone to wash their hands and the loos were clearly signed so no-one would go into the wrong rooms – they were very careful. And the house was left immaculate afterwards, as always.

What advice would you give other location owners, ahead of hosting a shoot in the current climate?

It’s a personal choice, people must make their own decisions. However I am happy we did it and this was a few weeks ago, the virus was more prevalent then than it is now. When we got back in the evening, we wiped down with disinfectant all the doors and surfaces where people would have been, it didn’t take long.

Any further comments or interesting tidbits you’d like to add?

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