In the previous article, An Escort’s Office, I gave some guidelines for decorating an escort’s home as a live/work space. Moving from this design-centric approach, we will now focus on a few of the practical nuts and bolts.
by Hannah Jay
Whereas decoration is location independent (you and your fabulous stuff can move and set up somewhere else with ease), the building in which you reside, the neighbourhood that surrounds it, and the type of space you occupy are all location specific. Where you live and escort is up to you, but before you think about moving, think about what real-estate agents love to call, location, location, location.
Where you live is an address, and that address may have certain connotations in the escort business that are familiar to those in the city, and sometimes even far beyond it. In New York, for example, Soho (artsy—at least initially), Greenwich Village (bohemian), Little Italy (ethnic charm), Gramercy Park (elite and coveted) are neighbourhoods which cater to people of a certain persuasion and have thus developed distinctive personalities. So when deciding where best to hang your hat, you should certainly consider features, amenities, cost, safety, and convenience—for you and your clients—but don’t forget to factor in location. By the way, if you happen to pick a spot before everyone else recognises its great potential (Oh, you are so ahead of trend, you brilliant girl), be forewarned that many under-appreciated areas which begin as havens for artists, intellectuals or some other nifty set, have altered over time, often becoming gentrified and no longer as affordable, nor quite as quaint
What is the prevailing atmosphere of this location? You know, the vibe. Will you fit right in to your new environment, or stick out like a sore thumb? Some places are easier to blend into than others. An escort with an Alt-Girl persona is not going to find much acceptance, or likely very much business success, in a prestigious and snobby enclave of the city. You and your location have to be compatible.
Look for what you need for your escort business. Is there a coffee shop where you might meet prospective clients without giving them your address? Are there a couple of date friendly restaurants in easy (in heels) walking distance. Is there discreet and secure parking nearby? Take a look around the neighbourhood during the day and again after dinner. The last thing which an escort wants or needs is a client getting lost or being late for an appointment because he had to park ten blocks away.
One thing to keep in mind when you are looking for your escort location is that it is an investment. Having a higher end location, convenient to downtown hotels, will increase your rate. While you personally might only feel you can afford $1,000 a month, your escorting business can’t afford less than $1,500-$2,000. More money means more security and better paying clients. If you think of it on a per escort appointment basis, if you are able to charge an extra $50 per appointment because of your location in 20 appointments you’ll have made the $1,000 difference.
As well, when you are blinking at the rent, remember that the working portion of your escort space will, almost certainly be deductible as a business expense for tax purposes. It doesn’t help pay the deposit, but when you file your income tax you’ll be delighted that the government is helping you pay your rent.
Remember to dress the part when you are looking for rental space. Managers and management companies want to see a successful young business woman/writer/designer wearing decent, conservative clothes. They do not want to see or even have a hint they might be renting to an escort. And remember that you will be doing this transaction in your own name with your own cheques and references.
One thing which you can ask for, as a single woman, is that your name not appear in the building directory. This will avoid issues with your escort working name.
If your escort space is also your abode, the ideal location is either where there is a great deal of privacy, or conversely, where there is the anonymity of a lot of coming and going. If you have neighbours in view your door, they are going to notice relatively quickly that different men are arriving at odd hours of the day and night. This rarely turns out well. So before signing a rental agreement, make sure it is a secluded locale or a large building with plenty of traffic to keep your business, and personal life, private.
Consider also the structure and nature of the building itself. Living above the shops downtown is an option that could be awesome and particularly easy for clients to find. Close to hotels for visitors and businessmen from out of town.
In apartments or condos an optimal size for an escort doing in-calls is a two-bedroom or a one-bedroom and den unit. This can get pricy for a single girl. Instead of trading off space for a lower cost, and a cooler alternative to the ordinary, are lofts. These spaces accommodate the live/work duality exceptionally well especially if they are in large industrial buildings or have been created from former warehouses. Transformed into open-concept residences, the allocation of living area is extremely flexible and adaptable. Frequently composed of only a limited number of homes on any given level, they meld the old and the new, and for those that love this aesthetic, offer the ultimate in modern living. Former industrial buildings have walls that are more often than not made of something virtually soundproof like concrete or brick rather than paper-thin drywall. A plus for escort activities. In addition, these types of conversion spaces typically have airy, expansive dimensions with high ceilings, huge metal windows, lots of natural light, and few walls which makes even a smaller square footage loft seem larger than a condo or apartment of equal size.
Commercial locations, either former or current, are unique places to live and work as an escort in. Very unlike the tree-lined suburbs. Trucks, delivery and courier vehicles, and workers arriving in the early morning hours give way to almost complete desertion after four o’clock. At night the neon glow of business signs join the street lights in illuminating the quiet. Not so in the residential areas, since early evening is when everyone arrives back home from work and school and all the lights go on. Although not for everyone, living in an atypical space and location can be a fun adventure and could be a perfect choice for the escort wishing to be inconspicuous rather than a source of curiosity and scrutiny by nosy busy-bodies.
Wherever your location, security is a critical component in choosing a suitable home for an escort. A steel front door with a peephole and key-code access are very desirable features. Even better is one additional level of security: a lobby door with a locked entry and video surveillance. While an escort always tries to screen her clients, access to a quick visual before they enter her space is reassuring, although not infallible. If your trendy, up-and-coming neighbourhood is still sketchy at nightfall, having an alarm system installed may be a necessary precaution for peace of mind.
Alright, you have weighed the pros and cons of various locations and layouts, nabbed fabulous new digs, packed/unpacked your boxes, breathed a huge sigh of relief, so now it’s time to get to work. Before you set up shop, devise a cover story to explain your mainly at-home existence. Are you a student? A freelance writer? An aspiring actress, perhaps? Whatever you choose, stick to it. Be absolutely consistent. It’s easier to remember (and feels less like a lie) if there is a grain of truth to it–and it’s more believable, as well. And, although this is a personal call, in my estimation it is wise to keep the true nature of your enterprise to yourself. Share confidences with a dear friend, by all means, just not this one.
Which means making a choice as to whether to keep your actual location to yourself. It is, of course, easier if it is just your secret but that means that you won’t be inviting a girlfriend over to have a glass of wine. For an escort, the double life is often better lived with strict separation. On the other hand, if you have a fabulous place, video door entry and a well set up schedule there is no reason not to entertain. Just remember to turn off your phone and scan the place for notes, your “business card”, stray sex toys and take your new escort ad off your computer.
In advertising your escort service, you will not be giving your actual address, of course, but you can give clues about where you live to appeal to, and attract, the type of client you want. Terms like executive loft, or downtown pied a terre as part of your pitch indicates not only where you live, but that you are a woman of a certain taste and means. You might now increase your rates slightly to reflect your new upscale milieu. A groovy new place to live; more money—positive change begets others. Your clients will pay attention to your location long before they have the delightful opportunity to be paid attention to by you.