How much do Private Investigators really earn?
According to the United States Department of Labor the average income of a private investigator or private detective was $28,000 in 2005. This figure may seem low, but it is actually quite accurate for a majority of private investigators. As mentioned earlier, many PI’s are retired law enforcement who usually receive some sort of pension in the $40-$60k range. When you add the reported average $28k income along with the pension income you can understand why the average income isn’t that high. However, we have found that the average income of non-law enforcement PI’s is much higher ranging from $40k – $120K. There are many private investigators that earn more than $200k per year, but those successful investigators represent less than 5% of all licensed investigators in the United States.