Step-by-Step Guide: How to Buy a Gun in Texas

In Texas, owning a firearm is not just a legal right but also a significant part of the state's culture. However, with this privilege comes the responsibility of understanding and abiding by the local gun laws.

In this article, we aim to guide you through the process of buying a gun in Texas. We'll arm you with the essential knowledge needed to navigate this process legally and without hitches. So, let's get started and explore the ins and outs of purchasing a firearm in the Lone Star State!

Who Can & Cannot Own a Gun in Texas

Before you set off on your journey to gun ownership, it's vital to understand whether or not you're eligible. Texas has specific criteria that potential gun owners must meet. Here's what you need to know:

Age Requirements

The age at which you can legally purchase a firearm in Texas depends on the type of gun you wish to buy. For handguns, including pistols and revolvers, you must be at least 21 years old. However, for long guns such as rifles and shotguns, the minimum age is 18.

Criminal Record Restrictions

Texas law prohibits certain individuals with criminal records from owning firearms. If you have been convicted of a felony, you are not allowed to possess a firearm until five years after your release from confinement, parole, or probation, whichever is later. Furthermore, if you are under indictment for a felony, you are also ineligible to purchase a gun.

Mental Health Considerations

Mental health is another significant consideration in Texas gun laws. Individuals who have been adjudicated as mentally ill or committed to a mental institution are forbidden from owning a firearm. The same applies if you are deemed by a court to be a risk to yourself or others due to mental illness.

It's important to note that these are general guidelines, and additional restrictions may apply depending on specific circumstances. Always consult with a legal professional or local law enforcement agency if you have any doubts about your eligibility to own a firearm in Texas.

Buying a Gun at GRITR Sports Retail

Purchasing a firearm from a trusted retailer like GRITR Sports is straightforward, provided you meet the eligibility criteria outlined above. Here's a step-by-step guide:

Step 1: Bring Your ID

While Texas doesn't require a waiting period or register firearms, you will need to present a government-issued identification, like a driver’s license, to confirm your eligibility to purchase a gun. If you hold a License to Carry (LTC), including a concealed carry license, make sure to bring it along. With an LTC, GRITR Sports can bypass the background check process, and you'll just need to complete the necessary paperwork.

Step 2: Complete the Paperwork

Then, you'll need to complete a Form 4473 - Firearms Transaction Record, aka ATF Form. This form includes questions about your identity and eligibility to own a gun. Be honest and thorough when filling out this form; providing false information is a felony.

Step 3: Undergo a Background Check

After submitting Form 4473, GRITR Sports will initiate a background check through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). This process verifies your eligibility to purchase and own a firearm. The duration of this check can vary, but it usually takes a few minutes.

Step 4: Complete the Purchase

If your background check comes back clear, you can complete your purchase. GRITR Sports staff will guide you through the payment process. Remember to ask about any warranties or return policies for your new firearm.

Step 5: Safe Transportation & Storage

Before leaving the store with your new firearm, ensure you know how to transport and store it safely. Texas gun law generally prohibits individuals from intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carrying handguns in plain view of others in motor vehicles and watercraft they own or control unless they are at least 21 years old or licensed to carry a handgun. When carrying a handgun openly in a vehicle, it must be holstered.

Buying a Gun at GRITR Sports Online

Purchasing a firearm online from GRITR Sports combines the convenience of digital shopping with the security and legality of a traditional in-store purchase. However, before you proceed with your online purchase, consider our Try Before You Buy program.

At GRITR Sports, we understand that buying a firearm is a significant decision. That's why we offer you to rent a gun to try it out on our GRITR shooting range. You can rent and test different guns, from Glock 19 and SIG P365 to Daniel Defense MK18 and CZ Scorpion, to find one that suits your comfort, needs, and preferences best.

Step 1: Locate Your Desired Firearm

Visit our website and browse through our selection of guns for sale. Don't be shy to explore our used guns as well. Once you've found the one you want, add it to your shopping cart.

Step 2: Checkout Process

Proceed to our Secure Checkout. At this point, your credit card will be pre-authorized but not charged until your order is ready to ship.

Step 3: Find an FFL Dealer

Locate an FFL dealer in your area who can accept your firearm transfer.

Step 4: FFL Dealer Communication

Ask the FFL dealer you've selected to send a scanned copy of their valid and signed FFL license. They can do this by emailing it to [email protected] or faxing it to 817-796-1009. Make sure they include your name and your order number. If your order is being shipped to California, the dealer should also provide a CFLC number.

Step 5: Order Preparation

Once we receive all the necessary paperwork, your order will be prepared for shipment. Your credit card will be charged at this point.

Step 6: Shipment

Your order will be given to a freight forwarder, typically UPS or FedEx. You will receive a tracking number to monitor the progress of your shipment.

Step 7: Delivery & Collection

Some FFL dealers will notify you when your shipment arrives, while others might require you to call them once you see that UPS/FedEx has delivered your firearm. Visit the FFL dealer's physical location to fill out the ATF paperwork and complete the transfer.

Follow the link to learn more about Buying a Gun Online at GRITR Sports.

Buying a Gun at a Gun Show

Attending a gun show can be an exhilarating experience, especially for firearms enthusiasts. These events are akin to treasure hunts, offering a wide range of new and used firearms, including some rare models. To make the most of your visit, here's a step-by-step guide:

Step 1: Research

Before attending a gun show, do some research on the type of firearm you're interested in. This will help you make an informed decision and negotiate effectively with sellers.

Step 2: Arrive Early

Plan to arrive early at the gun show. This allows you to browse through the available inventory before the crowds arrive, increasing your chances of finding the firearm you desire.

Step 3: Engage with Sellers

Don't hesitate to converse with sellers. They possess valuable insights about specific models and might even recommend lesser-known brands with similar specs and features.

Step 4: Inspect the Firearm

Once you've found a firearm that interests you, carefully inspect it for signs of wear, damage, or potential issues. If it's a used gun, ask the seller about its history and previous ownership.

Step 5: Be Prepared for Background Checks

While Texas doesn't require background checks for private sales at gun shows, the venue hosting the event might enforce stricter rules, necessitating these checks for all transactions.Always be prepared for the possibility of undergoing a background check when attending a gun show. Respect the seller's decision if they choose to enforce this measure because background checks do help keep guns out of the hands of prohibited purchasers, including violent offenders.

Buying a Gun from a Private Seller

Private sellers can be a good source for buying firearms, especially if you're searching for specific or hard-to-find models. However, this method comes with its own set of precautions.

Step 1: Find a Private Seller

Start by browsing online classifieds or forums dedicated to firearms. Texas does not require a license to own, purchase, or sell a firearm privately.

Step 2: Understand the Laws

Familiarize yourself with your state and local laws regarding private firearm sales. Ensure that both you and the seller adhere to the necessary legal procedures.

Step 3: Prioritize Personal Safety

When arranging a meeting with the seller, choose a well-lit, public location with other people present, such as a busy store's parking lot. Avoid meeting at someone's home or secluded areas, and consider bringing a friend along.

Step 4: Verify the Seller's Identity

Ask for the seller's full name, contact information, and, if possible, a photo ID. This not only helps establish trust but also provides a reference point should any issues arise after the transaction.

Step 5: Inspect the Firearm

Ask the seller to unload the gun and hand it over with the action open. Thoroughly examine it for signs of wear, damage, or potential problems.

Step 6: Inquire About the Gun's History

Don't forget to ask about the gun's history, including previous ownership, maintenance, and modifications. A responsible seller should be transparent about this information.

Step 7: Be Prepared to Complete a Bill of Sale

Although not required under Texas law, it's wise to complete a bill of sale for your purchase. This document provides proof of the legal sale and purchase of the firearm. A comprehensive bill of sale should include:

  • The name and address of both the seller and buyer.
  • A description of the gun.
  • The sale price

Step 8: Trust Your Instincts

Lastly, trust your instincts. If something feels off about the transaction or the seller seems untrustworthy, don't hesitate to walk away. It's better to miss a deal than to compromise your safety or end up with a problematic firearm.


Do I need a license to buy a gun in Texas?

No, Texas law does not require you to have a license to purchase a firearm.

Are there any restrictions on who can own a gun in Texas?

Yes, certain individuals such as minors, convicted felons, and psychiatric patients are prohibited from owning a firearm in Texas.

What do you need to buy a gun in Texas?

To buy a gun in Texas, you must have a government-issued identification - this helps to ensure your eligibility to purchase a gun.

How old do you have to be to buy a gun in Texas?

In Texas, you must be at least 18 years old to buy a rifle or shotgun, and at least 21 years old to buy a handgun.

How long does a background check take for a gun?

The duration of a background check can vary depending on where you buy a gun, but it is typically completed within a few minutes. However, in some cases, it may take up to three days.

How to get a gun license in Texas?

To get a License to Carry (LTC) in Texas, you must apply through the Texas Department of Public Safety. The process involves passing a background check, completing a training course, and passing a written exam and shooting test.

Can you buy a gun in Texas with a non-Texas state ID?

You need a valid state-issued ID to buy a firearm in Texas. Many FFLs will not sell guns to out-of-state residents.

Do you have to register a gun in Texas?

No, there is no requirement to register a firearm in Texas.

Sep 18th 2023 GRITR Sports

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