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6 Best Nanny Cams to Give You Peace of Mind

There are a lot of nanny cams on the market. We found the best ones that let you keep an eye on baby and their caregiver no matter where you are.
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profile picture of Lynsey Eidell
Contributing Writer
Updated
December 5, 2022
6 Best Nanny Cams To Give You Peace Of Mind
Image: Amazon, Arlo, Target | The Bump
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Leaving your child in the care of someone else can be nerve-racking, especially if that someone is a new nanny or babysitter. One way to get peace of mind is by installing nanny cams in your home, allowing you to still have eyes (and sometimes ears) on the scene, even if you’re not physically present.

But the decision to use nanny cams can be complicated. For starters, there are lots of options on the market—from basic security cameras to the ultra high-tech—which can leave parents both confused and overwhelmed. Beyond the hunt for the best nanny cam, there are also legal and ethical questions at stake, such as whether you need to disclose the use of nanny cameras to your caregiver.

Here, we break down everything you need to know about nanny cams, from state laws to the best nanny cams across every category.

Are Nanny Cams Legal?

Before installing nanny cameras in your home, you may wonder whether what you’re doing is legal. The short answer is yes; nanny cameras are legal in all 50 states, even if you choose to videotape your nanny without their prior consent. However, there are nuances to this rule, especially on a state-by-state basis.

There are currently 13 states that prohibit the unauthorized use of cameras in any place where your nanny would have a reasonable expectation of privacy, like a bathroom or live-in nanny’s bedroom, according to the Reeves Law Group. Those states are Alabama, Arkansas, California, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Kansas, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, South Dakota and Utah.

The law also becomes tricky when it comes to recording audio without your nanny’s consent. There are 38 states that allow for audio to be recorded with just one-party consent, which would mean that you could record conversations that you are a part of without getting your nanny’s permission. However, in California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Washington, you must notify your nanny if you have a camera that records both audio and video. Another option would be to disable the audio function and only use the video function, to avoid any law violations.

Legalities aside, recording your nanny without consent can be an ethical concern as well. Though it’s ultimately up to parents’ discretion, there’s a strong case for being up front about the usage of nanny cameras. Providing full disclosure to your nanny or caregiver allows for an open dialogue between both parties, and can also be a powerful incentive in preventing any neglectful or potentially dangerous behavior. Using hidden or secret nanny cams allows parents to address any unsafe situations they witness via recording after the fact—but not stop them from happening in the first place.

What to Look for in a Nanny Cam

There are several factors to consider before selecting the best nanny cam for your home.

  • Power source: Think about where you’d be placing the nanny cam before determining the best power source. If it’ll consistently be close to an outlet, a wired option might be best; if you prefer to move it from room to room or put it in an obscure place, a battery-powered camera will be a better bet, but those will need to have their batteries replaced or recharged on occasion.

  • Size: If you want your nanny cam to remain discreet or out-of-sight, seek out an option with a small footprint.

  • Camera views and angles: Depending on the size of your room, you might need to look for nanny cams that offer either wide-angle lenses or a rotating camera head to capture all of the action.

  • Wifi connectivity: Many cameras are enabled by wifi, which allows parents to stream the camera footage directly to their phones. However, wifi connectivity does present some risks, as it can leave your cameras susceptible to hackers. If using a wifi-enabled nanny cam, always double-check the level of security encryption provided.

  • Extras: Nanny cams can be equipped with lots of extra features, from two-way communication to night vision and emergency services connections. You’ll need to decide what’s most beneficial to you and your needs before making a selection.

Best Nanny Cams

With this research in mind, here are our top picks for the best nanny cams on the market today.

Overall Best Nanny Cam

Amazon Blink Indoor

The Blink Indoor camera is a standout for several reasons: It’s wireless and battery-operated, allowing you to set it up practically anywhere throughout your home. The app lets you see HD live footage from your home on your phone, day or night (thanks to infrared night vision). And with two-way audio, you can speak to your nanny, children and pets through the camera—and they can respond back. Plus, it connects to Alexa for even more convenience, and it’s one of the most affordable choices on our list. What more could the best nanny cam need?

What We Love
  • Lithium-powered batteries will last up to two years
  • Can customize the motion detection and set specific privacy zones, so you only see the movement you care about
  • Setup is simple and requires no wiring or professional installation
Things To Consider

• Storing video footage to the cloud requires a separate Blink subscription plan

Best Nanny Cam With Audio

Arlo Ultra 2 Wireless Security Camera
6 Best Nanny Cams To Give You Peace Of Mind
Image: Arlo

This isn’t just a any old nanny cam with audio; the Arlo Ultra 2 comes with all the bells and whistles. From colored night vision to 4K HDR picture quality and noise-canceling two-way audio, this option will make you feel like you’re in the room with your nanny and children (even from miles away). Plus, the wireless install and rechargeable battery make this a nanny cam you can tuck away practically anywhere while still seeing everything, thanks to an ultra-wide 180-degree view.

What We Love
  • Works with Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant
  • One tap from your phone can get you emergency help from the police, fire department or medical responders
  • Video recordings can be stored in the cloud for up to 30 days
Things To Consider

• Pricey

Best Wifi Nanny Cam

Reolink E1 Pro Indoor Security Camera
6 Best Nanny Cams To Give You Peace Of Mind
Image: Amazon
Buying Options
Amazon | $54.99

Nothing is out of view with this wifi nanny camera, which provides 355 degrees of horizontal views, 50 degrees of vertical views and 3X optical zoom. The Reolink Indoor Security Camera also has impressive night vision capabilities, capturing up to 40 feet in complete darkness, and the camera is compatible with both Alexa and Google Assistant.

What We Love
  • Features three different recording modes: 24/7 continuous, motion-triggered or scheduled recordings
  • Real-time communication thanks to two-way audio
  • 2K 4MP resolution provides one of the clearest pictures available
Things To Consider
  • Camera is solely wifi-enabled, which means it won’t work if the internet goes down
  • Must be plugged into a power source

Best Nanny Cam Without Wifi

SpyGuy Smoke Detector Hidden Camera
Nanny cam
Image: SpyGuy
Buying Options
SpyGuy | $199.99

For a nanny cam without wifi, go for this functioning smoke detector with a tiny hidden camera built inside. This hidden nanny cam mounts to any ceiling with Velcro and starts recording when motion is detected. It’s powered by a long-lasting, rechargeable battery and has a memory card that can hold up to five days worth of recordings. Plus, it serves as a fully functioning smoke alarm, making this a device that does double-duty.

What We Love
  • Hidden nanny cam is virtually undetectable and doesn’t need to be plugged into a power source
  • Works without a wifi connection, removing the threat of hackers gaining access to your video footage
  • Camera is motion-activated and has night vision that can record up to 16 feet away in total darkness
Things To Consider
  • Footage can only be viewed by removing the memory card and inserting it into a computer

Best Wireless Nanny Cam

Google Nest Indoor/Outdoor Cam
Google Nest indoor and outdoor nanny cam
Image: Target

There’s no need to worry about placing your nanny cam within reach of a power outlet with the battery-powered Google Nest Cam. This is a wireless nanny camera that works truly anywhere—indoors or outdoors—thanks to its weather-resistant, rechargeable lithium battery. The camera also allows you to zoom in to take a closer look, save video clips to your phone and two-way talk to communicate with your nanny and child from afar.

What We Love
  • Automatically stores up to one hour of recordings to its local memory if wifi goes down or there’s a power outage
  • Sends alerts when people, animals or vehicles are detected, and the area and alerts can be customized
  • With a Nest Aware subscription, you can keep up to 10 days of 24/7 recordings and connect directly to emergency services if needed
Things To Consider
  • Nest Aware subscription is an additional purchase

Best Nanny Cam With Smartphone App

Nanit Pro Camera + Flex Stand
Nanit pro nanny camera
Image: Best Buy

The Nanit Pro Camera isn’t just a great baby monitor—it also functions as a top-notch nanny camera as well. With the flex stand, the camera can be set up in any room (and can even travel with you), and with the Nanit app, you can view what your child and caregiver are doing with crystal clear resolution, day or night.

What We Love
  • App has a split-screen feature that lets you view more than one camera on the same screen at the same time
  • Picture-in-picture feature for iOS users lets parents multitask on their phone or iPad while still keeping eyes on the nanny and little ones
  • Lets you save video clips, keep track of your child’s sleep, communicate with two-way audio and set alert zones (that will trigger an immediate notification to your phone)
Things To Consider
  • Camera and flex stand must be plugged into the wall
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