New vs. Used Guns

Driving off the lot in a brand new car is a great feeling. You know that you are the only person to really drive this vehicle; any scratch, knick, dent, or scuff will be your own. There aren’t any surprises waiting for you under the hood—no lines patched with duct-tape waiting for a long trip to fail on you. But if you pay attention as you drive out of the dealership, you can almost hear the immediate drop in the value of your investment. Little depreciates as quickly as a new car driving off the dealership lot.

The great thing about buying a used car is that you generally are able to buy it at market value. No premium paid for the status of it being “new,” even if that does mean that you may have some slight insecurity about how well it was maintained before you owned it. The same concept applies to buying firearms. Picking up a brand new gun, from a local gun shop or from an online dealer, does feel great. You know that the weapon you purchase is truly yours – yours to maintain perfectly, to keep clean and serviced according to your standards.

While you could be simply purchasing someone else’s problems when you buy a used gun, that does not have to be the case. A used gun, properly cleaned and examined, can provide a great opportunity to buy exactly the gun you want at a price that is more affordable. If you do not find yourself so attached to the guns in your inventory, it can also provide the opportunity to resell weapons you own to find another that is more fitting, or perhaps a gun that was out of your price range earlier.

If you are less familiar with firearms, but are interested in making a used gun purchase, recruit a knowledgeable friend or visit a local gun shop that you trust. Ask questions about the weapon, hold it, and feel for loose parts. If you are looking online, ask questions of the dealer. Find out about their reputation.

There are valid reasons to purchase new or used guns (or both!), and those reasons will vary by individual. A person may choose to purchase a new gun as a carry piece, but use it for target practice. Someone else might buy a new gun for hunting, but use it for skeet. While reasons vary for each particular purchase, a few things remain constant: purchasing a used gun will almost always be less expensive, and purchasing a new gun will almost always be a “safe bet.” Determining which choice is right for you is going to be a matter of examining priorities, and choosing the option that is best for you!

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