Modeling surfaces pass the idea of just getting signed in. Modeling is more of an investment.
Most aspiring models have the idea that their agencies will take charge of all the bills so all they have to do is walk the runway or take editorials and get paid without having to worry about the incurred expenses been paid. Unfortunately Nothing is actually free that is free.
What is a Modeling loan and how to get one?
Modeling loans are the debt incurred as a result of model expenses made while trying to get or carry out a Modeling job. These expenses are to be paid by the models but in the case where it is not, the modeling agency can pay on behalf of the model and tag it as a loan on the model’s path.
Basically, an agency will provide you with what you need to develop and book jobs. But every expense they make on your behave is deducted from your future earnings, usually with interest.
It goes from little things like paying for your makeup during your editorial test shoot with a photographer to paying for your travel expenses such as flight tickets, visa, hotel accommodation, and food. All of these expenses are paid by the agencies with the agreement that the models will pay back after a Successful gig (job).
But what if the job or ‘job casting’ wasn’t a successful one or the models were underpaid?
Benefits of Modeling loan
As an aspiring model. You might not have enough capital to kick start your Modeling career and this is one of the times where an agency comes to play.
All you have to do when you get a job that requires more expenses than you can afford is simply to fall back on your agency and allow them to take the bills. Nevertheless, after completing the job, on successful payment you agency will deduct their loan off as well as their commission and you get what’s left.
So you don’t have to refuse a job because it is not in your proximity especially if it is a high-paying one. Your agency can take the stress off you.
Dangers of Modeling loan
Having your modeling agency or sponsor pay for everything with the agreement of them deducting the loan from your pay (which usually comes with interest) can in some cases be a bad option.
One of the dangers is not being able to pay back the expenses because the job wasn’t successful due to unforeseen circumstances or the payment was less than the expenses (underpayment).
In an interview with mina (not her real name), a model from a country in West Africa. She reveals that her debt situation had started a few weeks after she landed her first gig (job).
” When I got the job to model in a fashion show, I was very excited and didn’t think much on the cost because my agency said they got me covered and I was only to repay after the job was successful. I had travelled to London for a fashion show along side some other models.
As at that time my agency paid for my travel expenses which included the ride within London . They also paid for my accommodation and food in the duration of my stay. Unfortunately, I didn’t get much work as a model to walk the runway during the fashion show and I was paid less than my total expenses. This left me in-debted to my agency. “
It is traditional for modelling agencies to pay for their models flights, accommodation, and expenses upfront, but it is a standard industry practice that they get the money back.
Another case was that of Tracy who fell ill on her arrival to Milan for a beauty commercial shot as a result of her illness she couldn’t partake in it. She got back to her home country with been indebted to her agency, a cost which took her many months to pay.
However, model debt is not debt in any ordinary sense of the term, says John Horner, director of the British Fashion Models Association, representing UK agencies.
If a young model fails to make it and leaves the Modeling industry, she isn’t pursued for the money she “owes” he says. Instead the agency writes off the investment.
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