Can You Build a Profitable Home Recording Studio?

When my friends and I built our home studio, we knew we wanted to turn it into a business eventually. But here’s the thing about businesses, if they are not profitable, they fail. This put us on edge, so I looked all over to answer the question; Is a home recording studio profitable?

Home recording studios are profitable because there will always be a demand for local audio professionals. Distance might be a factor for a client, and your home recording studio could be the perfect distance. 

But if you’re looking to learn more about studio profitability, then this is the post for you because, In just a few minutes, you will learn how to make your studio profitable, how much you can expect to make, and how to advertise your home studio. I will also offer my recommendations of websites to promote on and give you a few tips to make your studio really stand out.

By the end of this article, you will know how to make more money and take your home recording business to the next level.

The State of Home Recording

Let me assure you that there has never been a better time to make music. Some pundits want to declare the end of recording studios, but nothing could be further from the truth. The audio recording technology we have today is inexpensive and, in some cases, a lot better than some of the more expensive stuff we had 15 years ago.

This screenshot illustrates the popularity of the keyword home recording studio as of January 27, 2020. 

Google trends for the term "home recording studio" from 2015 to 2020.
Google trends for the term “home recording studio” from 2015 to 2020.

You will notice that the graph barely moves. The keyword has dropped in popularity over the last 14 years, but the last 5 have been very stable.

The Benefits of a Home Studio

A home studio offers many benefits. Here are just some of the reasons why home studios will never go the way of the dinosaur.

  • Reduced travel time for clients
  • A home studio can be less intimidating than a larger studio
  • Not having to pay studio rent allows for competitive pricing

A pro studio may look super fancy, but clients are going to be paying top dollar for that fancy equipment; equipment they are not likely going to use anyway. That’s where you come in and offer a more sensible studio solution.

But you already knew the benefits of a home Studio, right? What we really want to know is whether a home recording studio is profitable or not. Let’s take a look at how much we are expected to spend when creating a home studio or, in other words, our startup cost.

Startup Costs for a Home Recording Studios

As with any business, you need to think about your startup costs. You might end up spending anywhere from $400 to $50,000. It really depends on how pro you are willing to go. What brand name equipment you purchase, how soundproof you want your studio, what kind of acoustic treatment you will have done, the list goes on. 

Rent should not be a factor since you will be recording in and mixing at home. But if you are considering taking your setup elsewhere, you will need to consider rent as well.

If you are in a pinch and are looking to record on a budget, here is a list of the minimum gear you need to get started in order of priority.

  1. Purchase a computer (if you don’t already have one)
  2. Digital Audio Workstation (software)
  3. Audio Interface
  4. Microphones
  5. Studio headphones
  6. Microphone Cables
  7. Microphone stands
  8. Acoustic treatment like dampers and panels
  9. Pop filters for microphones

There are countless other things you can have in your recording studio, but these are the absolute essentials. You can’t have a studio without them. Fortunately, you can get just about everything on this list for under 400 bucks.

Take a look at this video from the recording revolution to learn how to make a studio for 350 dollars!

How much can you make with a home recording studio

You can make anywhere from $30 an hour to $300 an hour. It really depends on your gear, what you charge, and how you promote it. We are charging $50 an hour, and we are happy with that for now. Some of my friends are charging $100 an hour. The bottom line is you could make a killing with a home recording studio. 

If you want to take a look at what studios are charging in your local area, check out studiotiem.com. It’s like Airbnb for recording studios. Thesixfigurehomestudio.com is a website dedicated to taking your home studio and creating it into a 6 figure business so it can be done. 

How To Make Money from a Home Recording Studio

There are a few ways to make money from a home recording studio. The fastest way is to charge clients to record. People use studios to record anything that pertains to the voice or sound, not just music. Consider taking on any of the following clients.

  • Musicians
  • Voiceover actors
  • Podcasters

Musicians

Music artists make music and need somewhere to record it, right? Why not find the artist and offer to record and mix their tracks. 

Voiceover actors

Voiceover actors also need a place to record, so don’t overlook them. They could be your next client. 

Podcasters

Have you considered podcasters? Not everyone wants to buy gear to start a podcast. These people would be happy to use your room and equipment to record their content.

Rent out your space

If you have a large enough space, consider renting out your studio. Renting out your space for a few hours per week can help you make even more money. This would require you to be comfortable with people alone in your studio for hours, so if that’s a bit much, then this is probably not the round for you. To check how much other studios are charging for rent, check out Studiotime.com. Studiotime is like an Airbnb for recording studios.

Check out this post from MusicIndustryHowTo.com for a great article on 17 ways you can monetize your home recording studio!

If you are looking for even more ways to monetize your recording studio, check out this video from The Six Figure Home Studio on how you can make $300 an hour from your home recording studio.

How I make over $300 an hour from my home studio

How Much do You Charge Clients?

Home recording studios start at $30 per hour on the low end. On the very high end, you could be looking at $300. But how much should you charge? Charging can be tricky. There are a lot of factors involved. You must consider the following:

  • Education
  • Equipment
  • Distance
  • Reputation
  • Music style specialization 
  • Resources

Whatever you do, don’t underprice yourself. If you are underskilled but made a significant investment on gear, price according to the equipment to recoup your costs. Like Warren Buffett said

“Rule No. 1: Never lose money. Rule No. 2: Never forget rule No. 1.”

Warren Buffett

Then you have to consider how you will charge, hourly, or fixed. Fixed pricing is usually done if you are going to charge by track or song. This is an easy way to charge and can put you and your clients at ease. But careful, you might end up spending several hours on a track and end up losing more time.

If you want to learn how much to charge clients, you can read our blog post Recording Studios: How Much to Charge Your Clients (for Beginners)

Advertising Your Home Recording Studio

Now that you have this great studio, it’s time to start turning a profit. But trust me, if you build it, they will not come. You need to market your studio somehow. How else will people know you’re open for business. Here are some tips you can use to advertise your studio.

  • Set up a website for your studio. Otherwise, no one will find you.
  • Go to local concerts and network for your studio. You need to get your name out there.
  • Use Craigslist to advertise your studio and service.
  • Promote your studio on social media. Use word of mouth to help your business grow.
  • Meet with any local drama and acting clubs. They could need the space to record voiceovers.
  • Connect with local music programs like churches or schools. You never know when they or a member will need the space.

Looking for more tips? Check out this post from Home Studio Corner that lists 10 tips on how you can promote your home studio.

How To Make Your Studio Stand Out

Depending on where you live, studios may be quite common. You need to make yourself stand out from the competition. One of the biggest ways you can do that is to make sure you offer things in your studio that your competitors don’t have. Consider adding these services to your listings. 

  • Higher quality gear
  • Unique and obscure instruments 
  • superior customer service 
  • Snacks and drinks

Think of anything that your competitors might be lacking and fill that void. Don’t be afraid to get creative.

It should go without saying, but don’t promise something that you know you can’t provide. You can’t promise a drum kit or free drinks if you don’t have these things. Your word is one of the biggest keys to business success. You don’t want to get a reputation as a person who doesn’t fulfill their promises. That will ruin your reputation… quickly!

Conclusion

Hopefully, these tips and advice have helped you see that a home recording studio can be a profitable business venture. The startup costs are substantial for a studio, but the long-term reward can be a moneymaker. 

Key takeaways

  • It’s a great time to start a home recording studio
  • You don’t need to spend more than $400
  • You can make your investment back by charging the clients or renting your space
  • You need to advertise your studio

If you are interested in building your home recording studio, click here to check our post on How To Build A Home Recording Studio.

Do you believe home recordings are bad investments or a safe bet? Let us know in the comments below. If you enjoyed this post, you can find all our posts here. Thanks for reading, and never stop making music.

1 thought on “Can You Build a Profitable Home Recording Studio?”

  1. Can it be profitable? Absolutely, can anyone make it work? not necessarily. Theres so many factors to keep in mind when starting a business, especially in this industry. Thanks for the tips though.

    Reply

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