Buying a Camera? Watch This First
"The worst thing you can do is purchase a camera on a credit card."
Before you make that big camera purchase, Sareesh Sudhakaran (AKA Wolfcrow) has some cautionary advice. His most salient point: You don't need a camera if you aren't planning to make a movie immediately.
Still really want that camera? Only buy it if you have a detailed plan for how it can make you money.
Sudhakaran argues that, contrary to popular opinion, cameras are not really an investment. That's because once you buy a camera, it loses value immediately.
"A camera has a certain time period after which it is no longer lucrative," Sudhakaran says. "A camera today is only good for about two years. After two years, the manufacturer will release an upgrade or new model. By the third year, the camera starts to feel and look old. Clients won't want it."
Due to this certain depreciation in value, Sudhakaran says the worst thing you can do is purchase it on a credit card that charges interest. You'll want to make your money back in two years; after two years, you can resell your camera at 40-50% of the original purchase price. And in the interim, you're going to have to charge clients a premium to make that camera purchase financially worthwhile.
Sudhakaran also points out that camera-hungry newcomers don't always understand hidden costs, such as maintenance, insurance, or travel permits.
So before you buy that shiny new gear, make sure you have a solid money-making plan and have done your due diligence about hidden costs.