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It goes without saying that you would not have hired your childcare provider if you did not trust them. However, even proper vetting cannot catch all potential issues. The best way to ensure that your child is receiving the care he or she deserves is by monitoring your sitter. Particularly in the early days of your time with the sitter, you may consider using a nanny cam.
In order to get a true sense of your sitter’s behavior when you are not home, they cannot know about the camera. Finding places to store your nanny cam where it can both get good footage, but not be seen, can be tricky. Here are some tried and true suggestions:
Inside a stuffed animal
This one is a cliche for a reason – it works! Your children likely has plenty of toys, so an additional stuffed animal will not raise any red flags. Companies even make gag stuffed animals specifically for the purpose of hiding secret cameras. Place the stuffed animal in plain view of the room, but high enough that your child will not grab it. The less likely the sitter is to handle the stuffed animal, the better.
In open shelving
If you have open shelving with plenty of knick-knacks, a camera can be easily hidden in plain sight, depending on its design. Most new models are fairly sleek and can be placed amongst decorative objects that your sitter is unlikely to think twice about. Open shelving in the living room is a great option as it is likely a space that your child spends a fair amount of time in.
In the entertainment center
Your home entertainment center is likely full of many tech gadgets. If the design of your hidden nanny cam permits it, place it somewhere in the entertainment center, facing in the same direction as the TV. Your sitter will likely mistake it for a speaker or piece of gaming equipment. As a bonus, this will show you just how much time your sitter allows your children to watch TV.
Behind a glass cupboard
The kitchen is another highly trafficked area in the home. Glass cupboards, if you have them, provide an optimal place to hide the nanny cam. Simply stash it in a cupboard that the nanny is unlikely to open often, keeping it semi concealed behind formal glassware or the like, with the lens pointing out.
In potted plants
Plant leaves provide natural cover for hidden cameras. Place a houseplant on a counter or table, and nestle the camera into spaces between its leaves, rearranging them as needed. Just remember to remove it before watering your plants!
In a flower vase
If you’re feeling especially crafty, you can also place a camera in the bottom of an empty flower vase, and then arrange dried or fake flowers around the camera so that none of the stalks obscure the lens. By keeping a few different sets of fake flowers, you can easily move the camera as needed from room to room.
Buying specialty cameras
If you’re having trouble finding a good spot for a camera in your home, you might consider purchasing specialty nanny cams that are already disguised. You can now purchase cameras that look like coat hooks, piggy banks or other common household items that are sure to go unnoticed by your nanny.
Using the nanny cam
Once you have selected and placed your nanny cam, remember to turn the camera on before your sitter arrives so that you do not need to try to sneak off to do it once they are already in your home. Turn the camera off after he or she leaves in order to preserve battery life. Check the battery regularly to ensure it is charged.
To get the best sense of a new childcare provider’s behavior, move the nanny cam from room to room. Especially in the beginning, you should review the footage regularly in order to catch any issues.
A nanny cam is an easy investment to make in the service of peace of mind. With a little bit of creativity, you will be able to find multiple spots in your home that are suitable for storing a nanny cam so that you can monitor your sitter’s behavior.
Joanna is the Senior Editor for InformedMag and is passionate about security and tech. She has been working in the home safety and security field for 5 years. Joanna loves to travel and enjoys going to hot yoga and Barre classes. She is dedicated to creating articles that both educate and help people make an informed purchasing decision.