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Old June 5th, 2011, 05:09 PM   #16
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Re: Trying to establish a day rate...help?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dylan Couper View Post
Sorry Liam, Josh is correct. In North America, rental rates are between 2.5-5% on your camera rig. If anyone is only making $50 on their $10,000 rig, they should find another line of work.
I just looked at my own prices and at I'm at about 3%, so what do I know!

To be fair, (to me) in the UK I've hired lots of kit at 2% or less, though I must say I'm always amazed at how much my Producer gets charged for gear we hire abroad - I always thought we were just being ripped off!

Also, the OP wasn't just asking about camera rental he mentions lights, audio and editing; I can certainly see the need to get a faster return on some of the newer cameras as they are cheaper and less rugged than older systems, but lights, lenses and everything else has a longer shelf life and that should be reflected in the hire fees.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Dylan Couper View Post
Please tell us more. I'd like to know what countries and what laws? This is the first I've ever heard anyone say that (at least in reference to the countries we live in).
I was simply saying to be careful, it's a fine line between asking an innocent question about day rates to be being accused of price fixing. Asking, as Chris says, is legal, but if you then adjust your fees in line with what has been discussed you've probably broken the law. At least, that's my understanding of the law in the UK and US.

If you're asking people what fee to charge so that you don't price charge too little, then you're OK.
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Old June 5th, 2011, 07:06 PM   #17
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Re: Trying to establish a day rate...help?

Quote:
Asking, as Chris says, is legal, but if you then adjust your fees in line with what has been discussed you've probably broken the law. At least, that's my understanding of the law in the UK and US.

Not quite.
This should clarify it:
Legal: "Hey how much are you guys charging? Cool, I'll charge the same."
Illegal: "Hey, why don't we all agree to get together and not charge a penny less than this rate, that way people have no choice but to pay whatever we want."

We're a long way from #2.
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Old June 6th, 2011, 11:17 AM   #18
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Re: Trying to establish a day rate...help?

I'm not sure using rental rates for equipment additions is the way to go for some.

In my case I live in a major metro area. If I'm booked with just me and my camera I can get on a local train. Once I add even a small light kit, I need to use a car which adds gas, possibly tolls, very expensive parking costs. an assistant to drag the gear from parking lot to location and there's the wear and tear on the car. Basically adding gear means adding car and assistant and associated costs.

If you're not in a metro area you may be using the car anyway and parking may be right in front of the location. Additional gear may be additional minimals cost.

Rental houses don't have to factor in the cost of car and assistant.
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Old June 6th, 2011, 03:27 PM   #19
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Re: Trying to establish a day rate...help?

Craig: my position is somewhere in the middle - my vehicle may or may not go into the field with me, depending on how much gear I haul. My clients NEVER pay for my vehicle BUT they DO get billed for location costs such as parking, tolls etc.

Mileage gets incurred when I leave the Greater Vancouver Area and is enough to compensate for gas and amortized wear and tear and maintenance.

Of course, I realize Brooklyn IS more urban than even Vancouver so this is meant to further the discussion and NOT to discount your very valid point.

I PERSONALLY would avoid mentioning the assist is to load/unload gear and would suggest that verbiage such as "due to the complexity of the location shoot, my assistant will be required at a day rate of $x", at least in MY specific situation... Otherwise you are likely to get promises that "our receptionist would be happy to help" and then not have anyone available when you MOST need them, like when you have a vehicle in a "loading zone" that looks more like a Fire Lane and ONE MORE TRIP to make to grab gear...

At rush hour...

With tow trucks circling like sharks...
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Old June 6th, 2011, 03:38 PM   #20
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Re: Trying to establish a day rate...help?

My assistant is basically the grip for setting up lighting and other gear (crane for example).
Using a car in NYC is a major expense. Millage is actually minimal. It's the wear and tear, insurance, maintenance. In effect I'm bringing a piece of gear that costs tens of thousands of dollars and can be thousands of dollars to maintain annually.

Being in NYC means there are many shoots where the car isn't necessary. I don't charge for the car per se, I charge more than 2% for bringing extra gear though. Having to bring lights and crane, slider, etc. increase the my charges for the shoot. I might charge $25/hr or more for the extra gear and much of that goes to the assistant. There's no way I can carry all that extra gear myself when the nearest parking lot may be 1/4 mile from the shoot location. If NYC adds congestion pricing, the costs are going to go up even more.
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Old June 6th, 2011, 08:12 PM   #21
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Re: Trying to establish a day rate...help?

Again, I was furthering the discussion and NOT discounting your valid and well thought out business model...

Which brings us to the heart of the matter - each region has its own idiosyncrasies and existing business practices (plural!)... FInd out what others in your market do AND temper that with what works for YOU, logistically and financially.

In my former home town, you were EXPECTED to arrive in a vehicle and could usually park RIGHT IN FRONT of where you were shooting, except POSSIBLY during rush hour.

In Vancouver, arriving via transit/SkyTrain or taxi is equally acceptable to clients and no one seems to blink an eye, as long as you show up equipped...
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