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Who makes money from the HOME studio?

Discussion in 'Recording' started by jeronimo, Oct 4, 2001.

  1. jeronimo

    jeronimo Guest

    I'm planning to make my home studio soon, and I was wandering, if someone out there is making money from their home studio? How do you deal with the "strangers" in your home sweet home? Any other thoughts/insights about pros and cons to have your own home studio and bring outside people as "customers"? Thanx!
     
  2. I don't make money from my home studio - just
    a hobby. But if I did have paying customers
    I'd at minimum have a sectioned-off portion
    of my home.

    I don't mind recording with friends and people
    I know, but strangers as paying customers would be a totally different deal, and I'd want to seperate my home from my work where possible. I think my wife would demand it also.

    Shane
     
  3. planet red

    planet red Active Member

    I charge a pretty small fee to record people at my house. Luckily enough the room I record in used to be a garage so people can go in and out without going into the house. We pulled the garage door out so you cant tell it was a garage other than the cement floor. I normally charge around $75 a (long) day to record. Im recording thru a digi001 into a G4, with mackie pres and some decent mics. I plan on getting a cranesong spider by around christmas so that will cover my converters and good mic pres. After a couple distressors and royer ribbons by march (I have everything budgeted) I should be set.

    The stuff I do now actually sounds suprisingly good. I get mostly punk, metal, hardcore stuff that normally gets pressed in small amounts. If you're trying to start a home studio I'd definetly recommend going after a specific "market". When punk rock bands come record at my place with my drums, amps, guitars, ect.... they get as good of a sound that they would at the local $300 a day studio with their own amps, drums, ect... So they tell all the other bands they play shows with "go record with this guy he really knows how to record punk rock". I also make deals with bands that I'll give them $50 off if they get another band to come in for atleast 2 days. So I've built up a pretty good rep with the local punk/hardcore "scene" and im the only guy those bands come record with now (mostly because of money). I normally record about 8 to 10 days a month and its basically just to build up custumers so one day i'll be able to take out a big loan and open a real studio. Good luck.
     
  4. waitgoiter

    waitgoiter Guest

    Planet red: good for you!

    Not only are you getting your ass into the game, but it sounds like you are also doing a great service to your scene.
     
  5. faganking

    faganking Member

    Hey,
    I make a *lot* of money from my home studio. It's in my Manhattan apartment. If it's an artist (male or female singer/songwriter) then it's quite intimate, which they all seem to LOVE! If I'm recording a BAND, I cut basic tracks at our *BIG* studio in the Pocono mountains (1 1/2 hrs from NYC) and overdub at home. Usually only principals (songwriter and or singer) come at the same time; with the BAND dropping by every once in a while. I find everyone to be quite respectful of the fact that we are in my home. It's never been a problem. I reiterate; people *always* comment on how comfortable they are and how *cool* my apartment is. My wife is an amazing artist and her paintings are everywhere. It's got sort of a museum vibe in here with all of the gear and artwork. I am blessed with some great mics and pres...and light gobos that enable me to build a little vocal or acoustic guitar booth. This is *preferred* over doing these things in BIG studio. Much better communication. I'm going on and on to try and stress the point that your 'home' studio can function as an ideal recording environement.

    Sincerely,
    Benjy
     
  6. lwilliam

    lwilliam Active Member

    I only record people that I have met and like. Of course, I don't make a lot of money at it like this, but that's what a day job is for...

    My studio is more for songwriting and producing artists with which I have some comraderie.
     
  7. td

    td Guest

    I've been making decent money at home recording / producing others work ......... enough to keep me in constant upgrade mode with my gear. The folks that record here have sought me out, so they are respectful of the home environment, plus they usually get treated to the meal of the day by my wife ( who's an awesome cook! ). I've done a few demos & am working on my 2nd full length CD. I am also doing a spec deal with someone that I play with on a regular basis. He can easily sell about 2000 CD's through his site & at gigs ....... so we'll do the CD here at home then do a 50/50 with the sales - so @ $10 a CD X 2000 = $20,000, should work out pretty well. No outside studio expense other than duplication / packaging. Then I can seriously eye up that Spider!

    Benjy, where are you in the Poconos and what's the studio name ( @ Dan Malsch's place??) I'm at the foot of the Poconos in Jim Thorpe. I'd love to come out & check out your space! How's the drum room?
    Regards,
    Tony
     
  8. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    I'll second the emotion that a lot of artists, especially neophytes, prefer the vibe of hanging in someone's living room to the pressure of working in a mix magazine cover photo feeling every tick of the clock. I ended up devoting the 1st floor of my house to studio stuff - although I still use the kitchen for personal use as well. Having a separate bathroom for clients vs. personal is huge. The other key factors: adequate parking, reasonably quiet neighborhood (not near an emergency room or under the main flight path), and most of all: good relations with your neighbors - especially if you are not zoned for business. If you can offer something that other small home studios can't, you should have no problem making money: i.e. - a really good piano, nice sounding drum space, etc. It may also pay in the long run to talk with an acoustic consultant. There are good guys out there who will draw you up some plans for DIY acoustic improvements. Good luck!
     
  9. jeronimo

    jeronimo Guest

    Hey guys, I'm really enjoing this conversation... you guys have so much to tell... let's keep it rolling... :)
     
  10. Ken Weeks

    Ken Weeks Guest

    But there are some consequences to crossing the invisible line between a personal studio and a business, no? Insurance, zoning laws, noise control, parking availability, etc. There is a little paperwork & a few checks to write when you cross that line.

    When I called my homeowner's insurance agent about the cost of a home business policy a few months ago (I'm still thinking about it...(- :D
     
  11. Mike Simmons

    Mike Simmons Active Member

    I've been recording out of my home since 1989. When I moved, in 1993, I bought a house with a basement entrance which helped my wife deal with the "clients in my messy kitchen" syndrome. My wife and I have earned our full time living from the studio from the day we opened. Our area has progressive home business zoning laws, we go out of our way not to annoy the neighbors and yes business insurance is a necessity. My main "day" clients are corporate and ad agency voice over work. My "fun" clients are musicians and independent filmakers. I'll never be a rich man but I love what I do!
     
  12. cjogo

    cjogo Guest

    http://fp2k.redshift.com/cjogo/crystalrecording.htm

    Just teach your ear--master your craft---make sure of your clients expectations (i.e. they expect a radio-ready,,, Label supported $$$ "Master" on a cheap budget) rent equipment when necessary {until you can afford }and you should be able to charge $100 per hour--we have a three song min-@ $1000 per tune

    good luck --any help we can offer ??

    thanks kindly cjogo
     
  13. jeronimo

    jeronimo Guest

    WOW, you charge $100 an hour?
     
  14. Ang1970

    Ang1970 Well-Known Member

    People think nothing of paying their plumber or auto-mechanic $100's for quality service. Why should music be any different? If a person takes their music seriously, they shouldn't want just any hack working on it. A studio with engineer included charging less than $100/hr would seem suspect.
    Keep rockin homies! :)
     
  15. cjogo

    cjogo Guest

    jeronimo $100 per hour?---You could charge less..just offer a four track cassette and two mics for $25 per hour--BUT,,,if they want maybe a tube mic, or a quality micpre, -a full MIDI system---a little editing....mastering???>>>well now you are $100 per ---On the weekends I am a photographer @ $600 per hour-----this quote always sets the precedent "purchase only what you can afford"

    thanks cjogo http://fp2k.redshift.com/cjogo/crystalrecording.htm
     
  16. hollywood_steve

    hollywood_steve Active Member

    I'm glad that this subject has finally come up. I am absolutely amazed at all the guys who are offering their studio AND their time for $20, $25,or $30/hr. Don't these people have rent or mortgages to pay? How about a car or food bills? Here in the LA market, there are so many struggling studios that a band can find 24 track Studer/Amek studios for $35/hr ( including a nice big live room). Which makes it really difficult for the home studio guys to charge $100/hr, even if they are very talented and have a nice little collection of outboard gear. So, you end up with the home studio guys advertising $10 and $15/hr rates!!! Until the market changes dramatically, I have chosen to give away my time for $0 - anything under $50/hr isn't worth the hassle of keeping tax records. I'd rather work a day job with a sensible salary and record nights and weekends. Not charging also means that I choose who I record - no pathetic gigs just to earn a buck.
     
  17. jeronimo

    jeronimo Guest

    Well, the only thing I could say is... while I was in L.A., I found a whole bunch of home studios for a lot under $100/h. Maybe where you are, things are different and you don't have a lot of competition. If we put my currency in Brazil as 1 to 1 with the dollar, $100/h will pay for a very good studio in my hometown. If you convert $100 to my currency, it'll pay for the best studios around... so, with my home studio, I'll charge something around $20/25/h so later when I upgrade some of the gear, I can charge $30/35. I rather charge less and have work everyday than, charge more... and find some few customers that want to pay for my work :/
     
  18. Bear's Gone Fission

    Bear's Gone Fission Active Member

    Austin was the same way on bottom feeder hourly rates. My theory is the ones who start the trend are living off of family generosity and think they can climb the buisness ladder if they have the business rolling in. I don't believe it works that way. It does create a painfully low expectation for bands of what studio time costs.

    The truly false economy is that most bands will spend at least twice the time in most cheap studios because the acoustics are usually bad, the gear mediocre, and the "engineer" wet behind the ears. And that last factor is often the biggest problem.

    Bear
     
  19. Mike Simmons

    Mike Simmons Active Member

    Money... always a revelation! That's why I keep my room as a corporate/ad agency room during the day. My music recording is for fun/creativity and keeps me sane. The bottom line is that musicians expect to pay very little, take up a lot of time and I'm not even going to get into issues of talent (or the lack of it!) and ego. Corporate clients pay me the going rate and treat me like a business (read "with respect"). Keeping your rate competitive is great, but I've seen small studios try and buy market share and I think it's a bad strategy.
     
  20. jeronimo

    jeronimo Guest

    I don't know about where you guys live... or how, you live... but even in L.A. (when I was insane enought to live there :) ) you can live charging $20/h. Ok, will take longer to buy your gear and stuff. But if you have a good service, and a good price, you'll probably work full time on your studio and when you upgrade your gear, of course you can raise your price...
    Just to make sure: I'm talking about HOME STUDIOS/SMALL STUDIOS ok?
    That's my .02
     

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