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Many people are interested in finding out how to get their home used for filming or photo shoots, and this is a great way to start. Below please find the answers to many of the frequently asked questions.


1.How do I submit my home to San Diego Locations?

You may either call us or fill out the fast and easy on-line registration form. All applications will be followed up with a personal phone call to answer any additional questions that you may have, as well as to set up an appointment to view and photograph the property.

2. What happens next? Explain the process to me.

If, after speaking with us, you are interested in listing your home with San Diego Locations, we will send a representative to take some informal pictures of your house. This usually takes about fifteen minutes, with absolutely no charge to you. We then use those pictures to show to Photographers, Directors and Producers who are looking for a particular type of house, pool, backyard , etc. If the Director or Producer is interested, someone from San Diego Locations will call you to discuss the details of the shoot and see if it appeals to you. During this conversation, we will cover the following points:

◦The production company's budget for the shoot.

◦How long they require the property.

◦How many people they will have on the set (your property).

◦Which rooms or areas of your property they are interested in.

During this part of the process, the location scouts will be looking at a lot of other houses to compare. In fact, they may come back again one or two more times with more members of the creative team before they make a final decision. Registering your home or business with us does not obligate you in any way for a shoot. You may choose which projects interest you or work best for your property.

3.What happens if the company decides to use my house for their shoot?

If the company decides to use your house, then San Diego Locations re-enters the process and negotiates the rate that they will pay you for the job. Our commission is added to your rate. (Standard commission in the industry is 30%.)

Example: If you are receiving $2,000 dollars for a day of filming, the company pays $2600. Our commission is $600.

Next, there will be what they call a "tech scout". This usually occurs a couple of days before the shoot. The company comes to your house and walks through each step of the shoot with the all key personnel. A San Diego Locations representative will attend this part of the process and then prepare a contract to specify exactly what was discussed and agreed upon during the tech scout.

4. What happens if they decide not to use my property?

Just like actors auditions, every time a director or photographer looks at your home or business, it will be “competing” against other similar properties. We generally showcase three to four properties for a particular project, and only one will “get the part”. Do not be discouraged if your house or business is not chosen on the first scout. Every home in our arsenal eventually ends up on the screen.

5.Will just anyone be able to get my personal information once I have registered with San Diego Locations?

All locations listed in our library are anonymous and location information is never given out. Although the images can be viewed on-line, without the context of the homeowner’s name, street address or area of town, it is highly unlikely that someone can find your property by just looking at the photos. With the advent of Google Earth, it is imperative to our business as well that the properties remain anonymous. Until such time that a property has been chosen for an actual scout and we have verified the legitimacy of the company, only the images and category will be showcased.

  6. What happens if another company comes to my home to ask about filming or a special event?

Although we cannot decide for a homeowner what projects they accept or not, we are the experts in our field and consider our company to be a safeguard against a filming or special event experience going awry. We ask that as a courtesy in exchange for our representation, you refer any inquiries to us and allow us to represent your home or business. It is in our best interest to ensure that the whole process is positive and that we be invited back. The San Diego film community is a small one, and we will most likely know the parties involved and can help negotiate the best rates on your behalf and protect your assets. That said, there is no obligation for registering with us and if you have had filming or photo shoots in the past and feel comfortable working with others in this industry, there is no conflict.

7. What happens when the actual shoot begins?

When the actual shoot begins, San Diego Locations will have a site representative on hand all hours of the day to supervise things. This person’s main purpose is to protect you and your home or business. They also serve as a liaison in helping the company use the property within the parameters of the contract. And don't worry; our site representatives are experts at watching for any damages that may occur during the process of the shoot.

8. How do I get paid and when?

San Diego Locations will pay you by check before anyone steps foot on the property to begin work on the actual production. (This usually occurs after the tech scout, which has been explained in question 3, in case re-negotiation become necessary)

9.  Will my home be altered in any way? If so, who puts it back together when the shoot is over?

Most times the production company leaves the property exactly the way they have found it. It saves them a lot of money to do it this way. If they choose to move furniture, remove a light fixture, paint a wall etc, it is their responsibility to put the property back the way they found it and this is strictly defined in the contract. Unless, of course, you like it they way they left it. If that is the case, you will be asked to sign a release, freeing the company from further restoration responsibility.

10. What if someone damages my home or gets injured on the premises? Does San Diego Locations provide insurance? Liability? Workers Compensation?

At San Diego Locations, our main goal is to protect the homeowner, financially and legally, throughout the production.

It is important to note that most of all shoots have had no damages at all. Furthermore, the ones that have had are within a small percentage and the damages are never over a thousand dollars. A scratch on a wall or a broken sprinkler head are common. The production company is responsible for paying for all damages and will take great care to protect your house from damage for that very reason. It is in their best interest to walk away with no damage at all. San Diego Locations will make sure the company's damage and liability insurance  as well as workers compensation is adequate and properly written prior to the shoot. The Industry standard is coverage between one and two million dollars, although we have never actually had damages that required the use of the insurance policy.

11. If my home is chosen for a film shoot, a wedding, or an event, do I have to leave the premises during the duration?

During a film or photo shoot, the homeowners are usually welcome to stay. If the whole house is being used or the hours go into the night, the company may choose to put you up at a hotel and provide a reasonable per-diem. Weddings and events sometimes ask to have privacy but more frequently, will invite the homeowners to attend. Regardless, San Diego Locations always has our site representative on the premises to supervise, so you can go on with life as usual.

12.Who handles security? And if something gets stolen off the premises, how is that covered?

San Diego Location's site representative is responsible for opening and closing the house, or ”set” every day. He or she will meet with the homeowner beforehand to discuss the workings of the house, such as alarm systems, sprinklers and light control. Lock ups and handling keys are a big part of our site representative's responsibilities. This part of the job is taken very seriously. Any losses are covered by the company. We have never had anything reported stolen in relation to a shoot.

13.If my home is used in a movie, do I get any sort of credit at the end of the film?

      Credits in the television and movie industry are negotiated for and don't come cheap. If credit is what a homeowner wants, they will need quite a bit of leverage to get it. In other words, credit is never given for locations, except for the City that has provided Police and Fire support for the project.