Published Jun 30, 2022 2:57 PM
A gun safe is a key component to gun safety, and while you don’t have to own one, it’s highly recommended that you own one. Not only will a gun safe keep your collection secured in case of attempted theft, but it can also protect against the heat of a house fire and help mitigate humidity and other environmental factors that can lead to rusty guns.
Much like the guns they store, the number of gun safes on the market are many, and the places that sell them are almost as numerous. Because of this, it can be hard to narrow down the right place to go to buy a gun safe.
Should you buy a gun safe online, maybe even from Amazon? After all, you can buy everything else online. Perhaps you’re thinking that your local gun shop would be the best bet. Then again, places like Tractor Supply or Home Depot sell gun safes, too.
The question of picking the right gun safe retailer isn’t necessarily something where there’s only one right answer. This list of the best places to buy a gun safe has a variety of different options and will give you the good–and the bad–about each one.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Gun Safe
A gun safe is a big purchase, often both physically and monetarily. As a result, it’s not advisable that you make buying a gun safe a sort of impulse buy. Doing so will almost certainly result in buyer’s remorse, and a gun safe isn’t exactly something that’s easy or convenient to return.
Obviously, the final decision is up to you, but if you decide that you’re going to buy a gun safe, then here are some of the things you should think about before parting with your hard-earned money:
Don’t buy a safe based on the number of guns and other items you’ll be storing in it right now. Gun collections tend to grow over time, and you’ll soon be out of room if you’re only planning for today. Instead, figure out what works for what you own right now and then go one or two sizes up.
Do you have a way to get the safe you just bought to your home? Some places that sell safes offer delivery services, either complimentary or paid, and that’s something you may need to factor in before selecting a place to buy your safe.
Both where you live and where you’ll be placing the safe in your home play a role in what safe you should buy. For example, a 1,000 pound safe is not a good fit if you live in a 3rd floor apartment.
Different model safes have different levels of safety ratings, both in terms of lock security and fire protection. Keep those ratings in mind as you figure out what you’ll need based on your neighborhood, fire department response time, etc.
Best Overall: Your Local Gun Shop
Why It Made the Cut
Your local gun shop that sells safes is a great place to explore different models and ask questions.
- Gun shops are filled with staff and customers that are ready to offer suggestions
- Staff are knowledgeable about gun safes and often use the products themselves
- Local shops often offer delivery services
- Other customers can offer insight on what they bought or avoided
- May be limited to just the makes and models that they stock
Many gun shops are also safe dealers, and that just makes good sense both in terms of customer service and business-savvy. Staff that work at gun shops are some of the best people to talk to when it comes to buying a gun safe because there’s a very good chance that they own one or more of the products offered for sale. They’re a great resource for bouncing real world ideas and questions off of when it comes to selecting the right make and model. Of course, other customers are often eager to offer up insight into what they chose and why. Last but certainly not least, because this is your local gun shop, they will often offer some kind of safe delivery service.
Best Budget Place to Buy a Gun Safe: Walmart
Why It Made the Cut
If you’re on a budget, Walmart offers a number of safes for people who are being cost-conscious.
- If you’re in a pinch and really need a gun safe, Walmart probably has something affordable that will fit the bill
- Walmart stores are all over the place
- Selection isn’t the best
- Staff aren’t trained in gun safes
If cost is a concern and you just need a simple safe to offer basic security, then Walmart just might have what you’re looking for. Sure, you won’t find top-of-the-line safes there, but if that’s what you’re expecting, you’re probably not familiar with Walmart. If, however, you’re looking for a budget-friendly gun safe, then you should take a look at what Walmart has to offer. Whether it’s a full-size gun safe or a smaller pistol safe, there’s probably a product to fit your needs at Walmart.
Why It Made the Cut
A safe company’s website will give you the absolute best information possible about a given brand of safe.
- A gun safe company’s website will have all of the information you need on every different make and model that they offer, plus you can even order online.
- Websites often have live chat features for any questions you have
- Info will be accurate and up to date
- Staff know the products inside and out
- May offer sales incentives not found elsewhere
- Options are limited to only one specific brand
Sure, you could order a gun safe online from Amazon, but you’d be much better off ordering a gun safe online from a website run by a specific safe company—places like Browning, Fort Knox, Vault Pro, AMSEC, etc. While you’ll be limited to just the products offered by that one company, you can jump from company website to company website to do any comparisons you need before committing to a purchase. FAQ sections on the site will be able to answer most questions that you may have, and there’s always the option to send an email or even do a live chat if you need more information. Best of all, there may even be some sale discounts, bundles, or incentives offered directly from the company that you wouldn’t find anywhere else.
Why It Made the Cut
Facebook Marketplace is most likely the easiest place to find a used gun safe near where you live.
- Find items in your specific area
- May be able to bargain with the seller to get a better price
- Set your own search radius to find specific results
- Create custom listing alerts
- Buyer beware since there can be some shady people on the internet
- Used safes offer no guarantees or warranties, so you get what you get
Facebook has rules against selling guns, but selling gun accessories on Marketplace or in dedicated groups is fair game. This makes Facebook Marketplace the best option for finding a used gun safe in your area. Essentially just an online combination of a yard sale and the classifieds section of the newspaper, Facebook Marketplace lets you search in a user-defined radius so that you’ll only be traveling as far as you’re willing to go to pick something up. Plus, you can create custom listing alerts that will make you aware of new items that fit your specific criteria, like location or price. The algorithm can be a bit tricky, certain items will rise to the top, while others with near similar names will linger on the site for months. I’d suggest new listings at the end of each day, so you can catch potential buys as soon as possible.
Q: How big of a gun safe do I need?
Figuring out how big of a gun safe you need is a problem that requires looking to the future. Don’t buy a safe based on the number of guns and other items (important documents, precious metals, etc) you’ll be storing in it right now. Gun collections tend to grow over time and you’ll soon be out of room if you’re only planning for what you’ll put in the safe today. Instead, figure out what size safe works for what you own right now and then go one or two sizes up, and that should cover any reasonable growth.
Q: What should I look for when buying a gun safe?
When buying a gun safe, you should look for something that is well-built, offers adequate security for theft and fire, has enough room for the guns you own today and ones you may own in the future, and meets all of your needs while still falling within your budget. What safe is that, exactly? Well, it’s going to vary from person to person. But those are some things to look for across the board.
Q: What is a good price for a gun safe?
Determining what is considered a good price for a gun safe is entirely subjective. When you compare sizes, features, and safety ratings, only you can determine if it’s a good price or not based on your own budget. Some people could never imagine spending $8,000-$10,000 on a gun safe while others might see it as a good price for what they’re getting. In the end, what constitutes a good price for a gun safe is entirely up to you.
Just like any other item you may be looking to buy, it’s a good idea to shop around, especially when it comes to spending money on what is most likely the largest physical gun purchase you’ll ever make.
Make sure you’ve figured out exactly what’s going to be placed in your safe before you go out and buy it. That includes guns, gun-related items, and any other valuables you want to store there. Then, think about what you anticipate adding within the next few years. You want to be certain that you didn’t buy a safe that’s too small.
Once you’ve got the size figured out, you’ll need to consider the different features and options that are available and what you’d like to have. From there, figure out a budget. At that point, you can start trying to nail down a specific place to buy a gun safe. After all, there’s no point in looking at a place that only sells behemoth safes that start at $5,000 if you only need to store a handful of guns and have a budget of $1,000.
There’s really no right or wrong place to buy a gun safe, so long as you are happy with the product you’re getting and the place from which you get it. Who cares if you bought it online or used? Everyone’s gun safe needs are different, and so one certain retailer is highly unlikely to work for everyone. Thankfully, there are both a lot of different makes and models of safes from which to choose and an equally large number of places where you can buy a safe.