5 Tips for Buying a Gun at a Gun Auction


Auctions are a great and fun way to buy and sell all sorts of items, including valuable antiques, real estate, cars and vehicles, and even guns. In fact, gun auctions are one of the best places to purchase a firearm at a great price. Whether you are looking for a new hunting rifle or wanting to add to your gun collection, gun auctions are definitely worth checking out. However, before you participate in a gun auction, there are a few things you need to know.

Are You Legally Allowed to Buy a Gun

The first thing you need to know is whether or not you are allowed to purchase a firearm. In general, as long as you are over the age of 18 and NOT a convicted felon, you can purchase shotguns and rifles only. If you are over the age of 21 and NOT a convicted felon, you can buy both long guns and handguns. However, you need to remember that there may be additional rules specific to the state you live in. For example, some states may have prohibitions on certain classes of weapons rthat you can legally own. Therefore you should always research your particular state’s laws.

Know the Auction House Rules

Before attending an auction, you need to know the rules of the auction house or company. You should either call or look for the rules on the auction house or company’s website.

In order to sell guns at an auctions, the auction house or company is required to have a Federal Firearms License (FFL). This means that all of the usual rules associated with the sale of firearms elsewhere will apply here, too. However, many auction houses will also have additional and specific rules pertaining to the sale of firearms. Always find out what those rules are before attending the gun auction.

Do Your Research Before the Auction

Just as you would when buying anything else, you want to do your research on the guns you are interested in before the auction. Especially if you are planning to bid on collector firearms. Most auction companies will post a listing of the guns that will be in the upcoming auction. Download the list and mark the ones you might be interested in purchasing.

Once you have your list, do some research regarding the value of each firearm. Check prices at gun shops, and on several of the online gun auction sites to see what similar guns are bringing. You could also check the Blue Book of Gun Values for a good ballpark value on most common firearms, and at least an indication on how valuable certain collector firearms may be.

You then need to decide what you are willing to pay, and put that number on your downloaded copy of the sale list. This will help protect you from overpaying as well as help you stay within your budget.

Inspect the Gun Ahead of Time

You should always inspect any gun(s) you hope to buy ahead of an auction so that you have a full understanding of the condition. Most auctions will allow a preview period of the merchandise before the sales start. Show up during this time so you can do an in-depth inspection of the gun(s) you’re interested in, as well as any you might be tempted to buy if they go for bargain prices.

Also, don’t forget to bring any tools that you would use to inspect a gun at a gun show such as a strong penlight and a magnifying glass. Just remember to ask permission before any disassembly or manipulation of a firearm including dry-firing or working the mechanism.

When it Comes to Winning a Bid

Make sure you know ahead of time if there is any ‘fine print’ about winning a bid. For example, some auctions charge a buyer’s premium which means you’ll be required to pay a percentage of your high bid. There may also be sales tax added to the winning amount.

Always Bring Cash

While some auction companies will accept checks or debit/credit cards, many prefer to deal in cash. In addition, make sure you know the exact amount of money you brought. If you overbid and don’t have the cash in your pocket, not only will you risk embarrassment, you may be excluded from all future auctions.

Final Thoughts

Whether you are looking to buy your first gun or you’re an avid gun collector, gun auctions are often the best place to find the pieces you need. Just remember to only deal with reputable auction houses and companies, whether in person or online. Most of all, have fun! By visiting here, you can have more details!