Crazy Careers

Private Investigator

Private Investigator

Career Advice on How to Become A Private Investigator

Popular media has most definitely glamorized the private investigator.  Books, television shows and movies have all made the profession out to be an exciting and glamorous one.  Therefore, private investigator actually is a career that many people have on their career planning list. They may be expecting it all to look like something out of their favorite film noir movie.

However, in reality, these freelance snoops spend most of their days sitting around eating fast foods and waiting for middle-aged businessmen to leave the apartments of mistresses or exit bath houses.  It’s not as cool as the movies make it look, not at all. 

Career Facts:

Private investigators do much more than simply follow around cheating husbands, wives, boyfriends and girlfriends.  Many are experienced law enforcement officers that have went into business for themselves and work in a wide variety of capacities, ranging from insurance related cases, to process serving, and even intellectual property cases.  In some instances, private investigators specialize in computer forensics.  Thus, it is possible for the work of a private investigator to be fairly broad and interesting.

Career Opportunities and Job Outlook-Average:

So what would a potential job search look like?  The job growth for private investigators is expected to be about eighteen percent by 2016.  In 2006, there were 52,000 private investigators in the United States. This number is expected to rise to about 61,000 by 2016.

Job Outlook is OK

A Day in The Life:

Due to the fact that private investigators can be involved in such a wide array of investigations, their individual days can vary quite greatly.  An investigator who specializes in catching naughty husbands has a much different workday experience than the computer specialist investigator looking into a fraud case.

Average Salary:

Most private investigators are not becoming wealthy.  The average private investigator earns about $34,000 per year.


Career Training and Qualifications:

No specific degrees are required to be a private investigator, but the majority of investigators either have some college or a college degree.  It may surprise some people to learn that thirteen percent of private investigators hold a Master’s degree, and three percent hold a PhD.

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