There are currently an estimated 41,400 private detectives in the United States. The private detective job market is expected to grow by 10.6% between 2016 and 2026.

How employable are private detectives?

CareerExplorer rates private detectives with a D employability rating, meaning this career should provide weak employment opportunities for the foreseeable future. Over the next 10 years, it is expected the US will need 8,700 private detectives. That number is based on 4,400 additional private detectives, and the retirement of 4,300 existing private detectives.

What’s the supply of private detectives?

The private detective industry is concentrated in California, Florida, Pennsylvania

Private Detective job market by state

State Name Employed Private Detectives
California 4,240
Florida 3,840
Pennsylvania 3,080
Texas 1,800
New York 1,750
Ohio 1,130
Illinois 990
Georgia 940
Massachusetts 780
New Jersey 710
North Carolina 520
Tennessee 470
Nevada 460
Oregon 420
Washington 380
Oklahoma 350
Michigan 340
Wisconsin 320
Louisiana 310
Colorado 300
Kentucky 290
Missouri 270
Arizona 270
Alabama 260
South Carolina 250
New Hampshire 220
Minnesota 190
Arkansas 190
Indiana 190
District of Columbia 170
New Mexico 160
Mississippi 160
Puerto Rico 150
Kansas 140
Montana 120
Utah 80
Delaware 70
Iowa 70
Alaska 50
West Virginia 40