If you’re an independent filmmaker or content creator, you may be looking for cheap filming locations in Los Angeles that still look good. It may be important for your movie location to be in the thirty mile zone.
Fact is there are many great property owners who know the needs of filmmakers on a budget. In this post, we’ll take you through some of those residential film locations for rent, and explain why they’re so useful to filmmakers.
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Film locations los angeles
Finding your location
Cheap filming locations in Los Angeles today don’t come easy. Without a big budget, it can feel downright impossible. LA film locations are much harder to find due to high demand and limited supply.
Let's explore 8 residential filming locations for rent in LA that fit within your independent budget, and stay within the thirty mile zone.
Let's quickly define this zone, so we're all on the same page.
30 Mile Zone Definition
what is The 30 Mile Zone?
The 30 Mile Zone is the area traditionally marked around a 30-mile radius from the intersection of West Beverly Boulevard and North La Cienega Blvd. in Los Angeles.
CAPTURE THE VIEWS
Of all the properties on this list, this Mediterranean Mansion is probably the greatest pure value, as this type of pool and view combination is typically impossible to find for less than a few hundred dollars an hour.
While the large home’s interior doesn’t quite match the glamour of the yard, it’s an incredible film option, and a no-brainer for low-budget pool shoots and party related content.
The only downside is that it’s not available for very short rentals making it relatively expensive for a quick photoshoot.
FILMING LOCATIONS LOS ANGELES
If you like your locations a bit on the wild side, this North Hollywood home is going to be a dream come true.
With an ample backyard, dozens of colorful props, and big beautifully maintained pool this property is a party waiting to happen.
If tiki bars and pool floaties aren’t your thing, the subdued interior can fill the role of any middle class suburban home.
Based on the current pricing listed, the home is only available for 12 hour minimum shoots, so your photoshoot may need to look elsewhere.
HIDE OUT IN HIGHLAND PARK
Rather than boast a single standout feature, this Highland Park home does just about everything well, providing you with a blank canvas.
Hardwood floors and warm neutral tones throughout make it a decorators dream, and it also offers an impressive curb presence for the price point.
The biggest downsides are a relatively limited set of exterior filming options, and lack of cinematic set pieces for photographers and content creators looking to shoot this movie location “as-is.”
SHOOTING A PARTY SCENE?
4. Beach house in Santa Clarita
While it’s not the fanciest pool in Los Angeles, it is the cheapest one currently available as a LA filming location.
A decent hourly rate puts this Santa Clarita bungalow in the ultra low-budget category and a solid option for students and first-time filmmakers looking for an affordable single family home.
It’s also in Santa Clarita, which despite the long commute gives it the benefit of easy parking, affordable permits, and limited-street traffic.
The biggest downside is probably the interior, which is small, and features a colorful and eclectic decor that draws attention.
NEED NEW YORK?
If you value good design, you’ll love this location. It’s a spacious bi-level loft space in downtown Los Angeles, custom-made for this city’s growing community of online influencers, and self-made fashion stars.
The owners are incredibly experienced with hosting shoots and can help walk you through all the logistics you’ll need for a successful shoot.
While the property is technically an apartment within a larger building, it’s located on street level with large garage-style sliding doors making loading and unloading a breeze.
Parking is going to be a bit trickier than other locations on this list, and other than a small alleyway there is no exterior of which to speak.
FILM LOCATIONS FOR RENT
If you haven’t already noticed, none of the residential filming locations so far on this list have been located west of the 405.
This small bungalow is the single exception, offering a rare combination of affordability, design, and functionality just off Abbot Kinney Boulevard in Venice.
Though it offers a lush, plant filled yard and wide quiet street, the property’s small size and intricate decor is best suited for smaller photoshoots, and commercials that require limited set dressing.
It’s proximity to the Venice canals and the boardwalk make it an excellent option for lifestyle brands looking to shoot some classic California B-roll.
50'S STYLE SPACE
Extremely affordable film-friendly homes are hard to find in Los Angeles, especially ones with a consistent design style and enough space to host a full film crew. That makes this 50’s themed home in NoHo a rare find.
The only major downside is that the backyard is quite sparse, and the period-specific interior makes it less flexible than some of the other well designed homes on this list.
ADD TO THE SPACE
I know what you’re thinking, but great locations aren’t always beautiful, and sometimes they can be downright scary.
While a decrepit crack den may not be everyone’s cup of tea, this style of home is incredibly rare, and offers a huge amount of cinematic possibility.
From creepy horror shoots in the basement, to music videos on the front steps, this little property has hosted an amazing array of projects.
It also avoids any obvious indication of its California locale which helps add to its flexible appeal.
While this house likely wouldn’t be popular on Airbnb, for photography and filmmaking it’s a hit, and definitely worth considering the next time you’re looking to add some grit to your project.
If you don’t have thousands of dollars for film locations, don’t worry — there are still a lot of these hidden gems available for a couple hundred bucks. Use this list next time you need to find a cheap residential location, or you can use our entirely free location scouting checklist.
FREE Location Scouting Checklist
Next time you go into a location to see if it will fit for your project, don’t come unprepared. Take a cheat sheet and a checklist.
We’ve created The Ultimate Location Scouting Cheat Sheet for Producers and ADs (with free checklist) so that you can accurately evaluate each location for the needs of a film or photography shoot.
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