Hiring equipment can be a great money saver - but what should you consider before you pay?

If you want to create high quality, professional footage then video equipment can be very expensive.

Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve landed a client with specific needs, renting the equipment can be a great way to keep costs down.

However, hiring comes with certain risks and hidden costs that you should make sure to account when choosing your equipment.

The Video Mode has compiled a list of five questions you should ask when hiring out equipment to get the best deals you can.

What kind of equipment do you need from your camera rental?

The most important thing to ask yourself when hiring out equipment is what you kind do you need?

If you’re hired to shoot a wedding video, the client might require you to use a 4K camera to produce future-proof high quality footage. While if you’re preparing for a shoot off the beaten track, your priority needs to be on portable and hard-wearing equipment.

It will save you time and money to make sure you do your research before you hire – and if in doubt talk to the company – this is what they’re paid to do after all.

What is the company’s policy when there are faults?

Things go wrong. But if you’re on a shoot and something goes wrong, it’s a good idea to know whether the company will get you the new equipment when you need it.

Key things to watch out for here are if they are likely to be out of hours at the time of your shoots and whether you have direct contact details of the people you need.

camera rental

Do the company require you to have insurance?

While hiring equipment is obviously cheaper on the whole, there can be quite a few hidden costs.

Depending on the value of the hire equipment, some places require you to have insurance to cover both you and them.

The majority of the time you will be able to get insurance through the hire company but it might be worth having a shop around to see the best deals you can get.

What kind of a deposit do they require and how quickly do you get it back?

If you need to keep costs down as a priority then this might be a deal breaker – some companies aim to get it back to you within days while others might take a little longer.

Different companies offer different policies on their equipment deposits but you should check the small print before you hand over the cash.

Have you checked the equipment beforehand?

This is the most important question – is the equipment working well before you take it out?

While most companies test their equipment before you hire them out, you need to make sure you’re happy with it before you leave. If you do notice anything that looks irregular or untoward then don’t hesitate to let the people you’re renting from know.

One thing is certain in hiring out equipment – you don’t want to incur charges for faults that you had no part in creating!