Where To Go Buy Your Gun

There are a number of options on where to purchase your firearm. The Well Armed Woman does not currently sell firearms or ammunition. In our products section, you will find wonderful options for everything you will need, but your gun.

We have reviewed the two different options, revolvers and semi-automatic pistols in the article What Kind of Gun?  which discussed what criteria you need to consider along with the advantages and disadvantages of each. This should have assisted you in determining which is the best choice for you. With this decision made, the next decision is which brand and model fits and feels the best in your hands and will do the best job for you. There are many fine brands with varying price points. Although cost is important and will be an important factor is selecting your firearm, your protection is more important when selecting your firearm. Safety, reliability and comfort should not be sacrificed. Buy a good gun. It might just save your life!

A word about husbands, boyfriends and well meaning family members: YOU need to select YOUR firearm. It is not recommended that you have someone else buy it for you or give you a "hand-me-down." Although their intentions are to help you to protect yourself, they are not you and just can't make the selection for you.

It is like buying a good pair of shoes.... No one can buy a pair of fine pumps for you.. Look, feel, comfort and wearability can only be determined by you. Enough said!!

The options of where to buy a gun are listed below. Do some research prior to shopping. Read reviews and find out what other women are saying. The Well Armed Woman is working on collecting this information and hopes to have it available soon.

‚ÄčWhen you visit a gun store or gun show - ask questions! I suggest you prepare a list of questions to bring with you. The more prepared you are, the less intimidating this experience can be. Be aware that male sales staff may not fully understand your needs and remember - THERE ARE NO BAD OR DUMB QUESTIONS. If you are not treated respectfully or taken seriously - tell them so and go to another store. Ask what you need to ask and handle the guns to see how they feel in your hands. Some gun stores are also shooting ranges. Many of them offer the ability to rent different types of guns and have the chance to fire a particular model prior to purchasing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BUYING YOUR GUN

Under federal law, new firearms may only be sold by businesses which possess a Federal Firearms License (FFL), and are known as FFL Dealers. There are multiple legal ways to purchase a gun.
 
Gun Store
 
Although FFL dealers are licensed by the federal government, they are also subject to many local laws and regulations. They must possess business licenses, fit within zoning requirements and may only offer guns for sale which are legal within the state, county, and city where they operate. They must also follow any federal, state, and local laws, regulations, and rules which may apply to the purchase. If a waiting period is required then it is the FFL dealer's responsibility to enforce it.

An FFL dealer must comply with the federal paperwork requirements. You will need to show photo ID and fill out a Form 4473. The dealer must keep this form on file and show it to the BATFE upon request. The FFL will call in your personal information to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) clearinghouse. The FFL dealer will receive one of three possible answers from NICS: an approval, a delay, or a deny. If the sale is approved, the FFL dealer is given an authorization code which he will note on your paperwork. Delays happen for a variety of reasons which may not be immediately obvious to the buyer. Delays do not always result in a denial. The dealer will tell you when you can come back to finish processing your paperwork. A denial means you are not legally permitted to purchase a firearm for some reason. You will want to find out the reason for it and, if justified, fight to appeal the denial.

Many states require waiting periods when purchasing a firearm. You will complete your paperwork, pay in full for the firearm and will be allowed to go back to the dealer and pick up your firearm once that period has passed. Visit the Legal Issues page and see what is required in your state.

Online Gun Store
 
In most states, it is legal to purchase a firearm online. These sales must also be through an FFL dealer as well as shipped to a FFL dealer in your state who will typically charge anywhere from $20 to $50 for this service. It is illegal to ship a firearm to a personal residence or any location which does not hold a valid FFL. All of the above verification and paperwork requirements applies online as they do in a local gun store.
 
Private Party Sales
 
All NEW firearms must be sold through a FFL dealer but in some states, private sales of USED guns is legal without an FFL. In some states, any citizen may lawfully sell a used gun to another citizen within the same state. There are many federal, state, and local regulations which apply to private party sales. It is your responsibility to fully understand the laws and how they apply in your state.

If you are purchasing your first firearm, it is strongly encouraged that you make this purchase through a FFL dealer.

Gun Shows
 
The vendors that sell firearms at gun shows are FFL dealers. Typically these are stores that utilize the gun show arena to reach new customers. FFL dealers at gun shows must comply all of the same federal, state, and local laws which apply to them when they operate out of their regular places of business. This includes background checks, waiting periods, and any other requirements required by your local politicians.

If private sales are legal in your state, and if the gun show's management allows, there may also be private sellers at the gun show. Private sellers at gun shows must comply with every single federal, state, and local law which applies to all other private sales within your jurisdiction. If private sales are not legal in your state, county, or city, there will be no private sellers at your local gun show.

BUYING A USED GUN

Here is a great article full of great tips on buying a used gun from Chuck Hawk.

Buying Your First Gun Part 1

Buying Your Gun Part 2