British startup and pioneering location rental platform, Scouty, is transforming how content creators and filmmakers secure shoot locations. By demystifying the industry and opening it to the public, the platform enables anyone with a space to rent to generate an additional source of income.
Due to the increasing cost of living, Universal Basic Income or a passive income has become appealing to many. We need a progressive, forward-thinking government before a Universal Basic Income can be implemented; however, we can already secure a passive income. The definition of passive income is an income that requires minimal effort to earn and maintain.
Examples of passive income are rental income, interest on assets and investment returns. With Airbnb’s launch in 2008, a new passive income method became popular. Anyone with a home can rent out their space on this platform to travellers. A second income was suddenly considered a normal way to supplement one’s main income.
There has since emerged a vast ecosystem where people can generate passive income by renting out everything from their designer handbags to their dogs and cars. In the latest development, homeowners can rent out their entire homes, or just a single room, on an hourly basis to film crews and photographers.
Scouty was founded in 2020 by Ryan Gannon and Nico Doeser after realising the existing systems for renting locations needed reform. With over 2000 locations, the site claims listings earn £500 – £2,500 per month from just 1-3 bookings. Restored railway arches, suburban homes, warehouses and even a gothic mansion can be found on the site.
These can be booked for filming, photoshoots, and influencer campaigns, among other uses. A lot of the spaces listed on www.scouty.com seem familiar. Perhaps that’s because they’ve already appeared in a TV commercial or were one of the primary locations in the latest Netflix drama.
While other services exist to connect location scouts with homeowners, Scouty aims to make finding and booking locations transparent, easy and less expensive. This ease of use makes life easier for creators while simultaneously offering a passive income to individuals with spaces to rent.
One of the site’s earliest listings came from London homeowner Ed Myatt who told My London in early 2022, “For me, it’s all about the money – it’s just easy money,” before adding, “It pays the mortgage.”
Gannon and Doeser are pleased to have transformed the industry and given others the opportunity to monetise their space. They each have their own skill set, and unique role in ensuring the site delivers both for creatives and location owners. Doeser is in charge of marketing the site to industry professionals so that the locations have a regular flow of enquiries, while Gannon is responsible for the site’s UX.
For Gannon, it’s also about making spaces available to a more diverse creative crowd. He said, “Although we do have big-budget productions and film productions and projects that can afford to use agencies, the majority of the clients that we have are people who couldn’t afford a location agency – or wouldn’t even think about using one.”
Scouty is free to join. The company charges a modest 15% commission on each successful booking through www.scouty.com. Clients that have used the service in the past 12 months include BBC, Sony Music, Vice and brands such as Rat & Boa, Carwow, Trapstar and influencers.