What: Rent out your house or car to movie producers and photographers

Expected pay: $500 and up

Husl$core: $$$$$

Commissions & Fees: 15%

Where: Los Angeles, New York (entire Tri-State region), and San Francisco. 

Requirements: You must be the owner of the property or have written approval from the owner to rent it out; have good photos; pass a site review; have a phone number, email address (to get and respond to rental requests) and a bank account, where they can direct-deposit your money.

Review: Giggster is one of several sites that allow property owners to rent their space for special events, rather than overnight. Unlike PeerSpace and Splacer, that rent your space by the hour for a wide array of different types of events, Giggster generally rents the space for 12-hour stretches to movie-makers. Renting to movie productions, both professional and student, makes this side hustle a bit unique in several respects. First, your property doesn’t need to be pristine. Site co-founder Mathieu Goudot says the site recently rented an empty lot in the desert to producers of a horror film, for instance. Listed properties range from elegant beach cottages to tiny ramshackle residences in the inner city. Each has its own market. Better yet, the amount you can and should charge is three- to five-times what you would normally charge to rent your home via Airbnb. At the moment, demand is strong enough that property-owners can expect to get at least a renter or two each month.

However, this side hustle is also unique in that there are likely to be more people on your property than there would be if you were renting to a tourist, which creates its own set of risks. Giggster addresses those with a liability policy to cover the property while it is rented and by taking a hefty deposit (50% of the rental amount). You get paid for the rental on the day the rental occurs and have 72 hours after the completion of the shoot to report any property damage. You can also require that renters pay for a “site rep” — an independent individual, who remains onsite throughout filming to make sure the producer doesn’t break your rules or damage your property.

Giggster also advises renters to demand to see permits and production insurance documents. Why is that important? Because Giggster’s insurance policy is liability coverage only, which protects you from getting sued if someone gets injured on your property. It does not cover property damage. Property damage coverage would come from the deposit and from the producer’s production insurance policy. 

If you have a luxury or classic car — even a junky classic, like a rusty 1965 Corvair — you may also be able to rent that through Giggster. Again, because this is for the movies, you can specify that no one drives the car — or that you drive the car, if you’re reluctant to let anyone else spin around in your Mercedes gullwing or your Packard truck. The rates are generous.

What makes this side hustle stand out  to us is the customer service. Giggster has a phone number on its “contact us” page and executives at the company answer it. That’s rare, delightful and, maybe, necessary for someone who might not know what production insurance is or what types of filming permits ought to be provided before renting out a residence.

If you’re considering renting through Giggster, you may also want to look at its competitors ThisOpenSpacePeerSpace and Splacer.

What their users say: (from an interview with SideHusl)

“We make 10-times as much with this than we do with Airbnb. We typically rent the house for $1,000 a day. Over the past year, I’d say we’ve gotten about $20,000 from Giggster. Most of our projects are student projects. New York Film Academy or USC. They pay the rental rate and the cleaning fees. Giggster takes 15%. But then we don’t have to ask for payment. The money comes straight to our bank account. We had one problem early on, where we had some damage to a floor and we wanted them to cover it with the insurance. We found out that their insurance didn’t cover as much as we thought, so now we always ask for proof of insurance from the film company.” — David Dellinger, Los Angeles IT Professional

 

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