‘4 Privet Drive’ in Harry Potter (pictured top left) is actually 18 Picket Post Close, Martins Heron, Bracknell, it was later replicated inside the studio for further filming. The outside shots for the Brockman’s family home in Chiswick from the TV show Outnumbered (pictured top right) was actually shot at Dempster Road in Wandsworth, nearly 7 miles away and the other side of the Thames.
There is endless British made content being created each week and obviously, all of this content cannot be captured at the same location.
It’s estimated that home owners can earn between £200-£5,000 per day by simply renting out their home to TV and film production companies, Magazine Photographers and Brands.
Is my house posh enough?
On many of these letting websites, you will see lots of posh looking property but remember lots of film sets need ‘down to earth’ / normal family homes (mess and all).
How much can I realistically expect to earn?
- Blockbuster films pay up to £5,000 a day. Many will simply build sets because it’s cheaper
- TV dramas up to £2,500 a day
- Photo-shoots for magazines up to £1,000 daily
- TV documentaries or Music Videos from £500 a day 1
Will someone come and visit the house before production starts?
A production company will most likely visit 3-6 times before they start filming depending on various factors, this is quite normal. On the days of production expect many people coming and going.
‘People can’t believe how extraordinarily disruptive it is to have a film shot in their home,’ explains Downton Abbey creator Lord (Julian) Fellowes.
‘There are dozens of people involved in a film, coming and going in your home for days. But it all comes good in the end and it’s a thrill to spot your property in a movie.
How many people will be in my house? What is a normal day?
- Photography, online video and product launch – 09:00 – 18:00 with up to 15 crew members
- TV commercials and dramas – 07:00 – 19:00 with anything up to 45 crew members 2
How long would it last?
This really depends on what is being filmed or photographed. Make sure in your contract it stipulates a day rate for the use.
What will happen before the filming day?
First of all the producers/company will visit and agree with you a timetable and payment schedule.
Depending on the content being produced, the team might require work to be done (e.g. painting or adding mirrors etc to the walls), all you need to do before this is ensure the house is clean and tidy and you’re meeting your side of the contract.
If you’re unsure then ask.
How can I increase my chances of being picked?
- From what we’ve read the key is good communication with the agency and production teams.
- You must return calls and emails quickly.
- Be flexible and open minded.
- Don’t be too demanding but ensure they’re not taking you for a ride.
- Clients will want to take down pictures, move furniture, use your kitchen, or sometimes bring children and animals on to set so be prepared for that
Do I need to be there?
In short, it depends, being able to help them find power connectors or work the kettle is probably useful to begin with but the company may require you to be quiet/not at the property at all for certain productions. I’m sure these companies are safe to use but I’d recommend securing your valuables elsewhere just in case they have a rogue employee or leave the door unlocked for some reason.
It’s probably a good idea to avoid being in front of the camera at any point, just keep out of their way and let them work. Also, if you have famous actors etc then it’s recommended you don’t disturb them as they’re probably busy learning lines etc.
Ensure you’re paid properly
- You should be paid for all the days your house is being used (including setup and dismantling), normally non-production days are charged at 50% off.
- You should have a proper contract listing out who is paying you and for exactly what.
- Read the small print.
- Ensure it mentions the type of production.
- Ensure it mentions they will put your house back to how it was when they arrived (original condition).
- Some contracts will mention wear and tear and say if this is acceptable or not, this is down to you on what you’re willing to accept. Just make sure they don’t take you for a ride.
Will my house value increase?
In short probably not but if the film is a success then maybe, for instance, Bridget Jones’ one-bedroom flat in Borough was rumoured to have increased by £450,0003 since filming, although a good chunk of that could just be London’s insane housing market
Where should I get my home listed?
Should I register with multiple agents?