At Wrapal, we’re proud to offer a variety of services that make film shoots run smoothly, whether running it or hosting it. One of the biggest worries our property owners have when hosting a shoot is how their property will be protected.
To that end, we offer exclusive affordable Property Assurance through Wrapal, which provides coverage to the property throughout the duration of the shoot and protects against any damage. This protection starts at just $199, which is a great value considering how expensive the typical million dollar production policy can be.
But going through insurance for minor issues doesn’t make much sense, so we greatly recommend that property owners request security deposits from the filmmakers interested in their property. While most of our users may be very familiar with the concept of security deposits, we wanted to use this blog entry to review what they’re used for and go over some other reasons you might choose to request them.
Why Security Deposits?
As most of our users know, property owners can request that filmmakers pay an additional amount along with their rental price in order to cover any potential damages to the house. We generally recommend that this amount be no less than $200.
But why would you need a security deposit in the first place, you may ask? The idea is that the property owner can make a claim on a portion of the deposit in the rare occurrence of damage to the property. However honest a filmmaker may seem, it’s always a wise idea to protect yourself in case something unforeseen happens. For your peace of mind, all deposits are held by Wrapal along with the payment, thanks to our Stripe payment processing service, so you know that you’re in good hands when you book with Wrapal.
We give our property owners 48 hours to make sure there are no issues with the location post-shoot, and if everything passes inspection, we refund the deposit back to the filmmaker and transfer the payment for the location to the property owner. In the case of weekend shoots, some property owners will decide to go out of town or vacate the property for the duration of the shoot, so we extend the time between the end of the shoot and the processing of the payment, in this case, to ensure that the property owners have enough time to inspect their homes and assess any damage.
Can’t Be Too Careful
“The filmmaker has insurance, so if anything happens I’ll be WELL taken care of,” you may say. That’s great! We’d still encourage you to ask for a security deposit as an added layer of protection. Insurance is great for large forms of damage, but isn’t well suited for any small damage that may happen, such as a small hole in the wall, a broken vase, or scratches on the floor. Damage is rare for Wrapal properties, but when they do happen, these little incidents make up the vast majority of the ones we deal with, and none of these examples would be substantial enough to meet the deductible of the average property insurance policy available to most filmmakers.
Additionally, it’s just a lot easier and simpler to contact the Wrapal offices and report damage to us than to go through an insurance company. After a simple phone call, we will contact the filmmaker to verify, then take the proper amount out of the security deposit and send it to the property owner, along with the location charge.
Buying Extra Time
Many property owners have asked what to do if the filmmakers need to take extra time than was previously agreed upon. Maybe they need an extra couple hours to get the shots they need, or maybe wrapping at the end of the shoot took longer than expected. If you want to charge them for this time without a security deposit, you’d most likely be out of luck. With a security deposit, you can simply put in a call to us at Wrapal and we can make a claim on the appropriate amount, which you as the property owner will receive once the rest of the payment transfers. This method can also be used in the event that a filmmaker arrives with a significantly larger crew than expected, or decides they need to use a room/area of your property that wasn’t a part of the original arrangement. Easy!
Unforeseen Extra Charges
Damages and overages aren’t the only uses for a security deposit. Potential incidental charges are great reasons to request an extra parcel of cash. The example we cite most frequently is one of our property owners that has a ranch up in Lancaster. He has a fairly large property and uses an ATV to get around quickly. When a filmmaker comes by and wants to scout the area, he’s willing to offer his ATV to help tour the location and later transport crew and equipment. As one can imagine, this uses up quite a bit of fuel, so he requests an additional part of the security deposit that can cover the variable amount of gas he may end up using. These particular circumstances are pretty rare, but they demonstrate the ways that including a security deposit can increase on-set flexibility.
It’s for these reasons that we recommend a minimum deposit of $200, but more is of course always better, as long as the filmmaker can afford it. For those with high-end properties, we’d suggest asking for a deposit that is double the per-hour rate of your property.
As you can probably tell, most unforeseen charges can be easily covered with a security deposit, so there’s really no drawback to having it. Seems like that feeling of security is why they call it a “security” deposit! Make sure to keep in contact with the Wrapal offices if ever you need us, and soon you’ll be saying “That’s a Wrapal!”