A handgun purchase can be a valuable investment, whether you're using it for protection, competition, hunting, or target practice. As such, it shouldn't be a mindless purchase. Using your head and heeding these handgun tips can help.
Some handguns are used for hunting, but many are used for sport competition or self defense; different handguns are appropriate for all three. A .22LR caliber gun, for instance, is a lightweight piece perfect for competing, but you probably want something heavier for home protection.
Don't Buy Cheap
Everyone wants to avoid high costs, but hoping for cheap pistols could ruin your experience. Don't be duped into low-cost pieces that could chip and crack. Research prices first; if you see a handgun selling for substantially less, that's a piece to avoid.
Select Common Calibers
You may have seen a beautiful piece in an unfamiliar caliber and figure that's the one for you. However, being new to firearms, you should know that unusual caliber weapons can mean time and expense when it sticks or needs repairs. Ammunition could be costly too; even when you're getting practice load rounds, you could be spending more. Wait for unusual pieces until you've got a collection going.
Feel It First
Wherever you plan to find the handgun to purchase, remember one thing: feel it first. Even if you've chosen a fantastic handgun, you've got to ensure it will feel comfortable when held. The grip could be too thick or thin to feel "right", and different components may sit awkwardly and bump your knuckles. It should feel comfortable in your hand.
Do Function Checks
You'll need to do a function check. As a newbie you may not understand how to check for accuracy, magazine release, and other issues, but you should have either a trusted acquaintance or firearm sales person who will test it. In fact, you should also be asking whether the entire firearm has been dissembled, lubricated, and checked for problems.
Plan for Storage
Gun ownership includes responsibilities, and that first piece is a fine time to demonstrate how careful you can be with firearms in the home. Get a safe for your handgun; you may think that's unnecessary for only one handgun, but locks are vital, especially with children. You can plan for later purchases and select a bigger safe than currently needed.
Your first handgun should be researched and discussed with experts, family members, retailers, and others. Follow these steps and you'll be proud of the piece you get.