What is the best way to buy a handgun privately as a 20 year old in Virginia?

I am trying to find private sellers who are willing to sell me a ruger LCP or LCR. I am going to a gun show this weekend and was wondering if gun shows are a good place to find private sellers. Those firearm classified websites seem really sketchy and i'm a little scared to meet face to face with someone who owns a gun and can possibly shoot me in front of wal mart haha. All i have to defend myself is a 10/22! Any feedback is good from gun experts or experienced buyers and sellers of firearms. Thank you.


At twenty you're in a tough spot. While you can legally acquire a hand gun, your sources are limited to private owners. And when you narrow it down to a specific model, that cuts it down even further. Yes, you should definitely hit the gun shows. While you probably won't find your gun, you WILL learn things. Keep looking at the classifieds. You might get lucky. In the meantime you're still progressing toward twenty-one when you can walk into a store and buy what you want, brand new, warrantied, without any nasty surprises in its history.


Most of the regulars have been 20 years old and remember the misery it brings not being a teen and not a legal adult but most of us would go back there if possible. I couldn`t visualize retirement when I was thirty or even 40, however, it is 10 years past retirement and the time has flown by faster than the years after 20. Just hang on and do not color outside the lines concerning handguns and you will glad you did. As far as gun shows, I have well over 40 years with them and met some of the finest people I have ever known both strolling the isles and behind the tables covered with all types of firearms. There are plenty of private sellers as well as FFL dealers and both have been very trustworthy and follow the law. I honestly can`t say if a few rouge sellers are present but I can safely say...very,very few. The private sellers will often have a sign on their table so not hard to find and the FFL`s will have a clip board with a stack of 4473 forms and a chair within their area plus the phone service to run a background check. There has to be a safe place for an elderly or disabled person to sell his/her guns and a gun show is #1 IMHO. Classified ads in the local paper or Thrifty Nickel will bring the buyers but a person`s home or remote meeting place is very risky for both seller and buyer. Selling to a FFL is my advise because if there is a problem with the firearm`s history the FFL takes the heat if the firearm ends up or has been in the wrong hands. Again, hang on...21 will come sooner than you think.


" Those firearm classified websites seem really sketchy and i'm a little scared to meet face to face with someone who owns a gun and can possibly shoot me in front of wal mart ..." That certainly is a consideration.


Federal law state that a 20 year old may purchase a handgun from a private party, providing that he passes the requirements to own a gun. State and local laws vary; always check those. You could meet a perspective gun seller at a gun range. This would allow you to test the gun, and the chance of foul play is reduced by the presence of cameras, and armed security. Check the rules of the gun range first. There are private sellers at gun shows, but prices are generally high.


Handguns are not dangerous and will never be banned. I don't know if a 20-year-old can purchase a handgun in Virginia. If not, there is no legal way to do so. If you can, find someone selling a gun and buy it....that's how capitalism works you know. Barring those two options, buy a shotgun and wait a year. This all seems pretty simple to me...I'm not sure what about this issue prompted you to turn on your computer, open a browser, log into YA, type out the question, and wait for answers.


Wait until you're 21. That 10/22 will work fine while you're marking time.

Russ in NOVA

The gun shows I have been to are not good great places to buy guns privately as most sellers there are dealers. Have you tried vaguntrader.com? I have bought and sold through there a few times. Follow the site's advice and you will be fine.

six shooter

im going to get rated down constantly for this. but hear me out please. is it legal? possibly. but possibly not. none of us are lawyers. assume it IS legal, if a police officer thinks its illegal, your gun will get confiscated and youll be greatly inconvenienced. and you might be fighting to get your gun back even after the case was thrown away. worse things HAVE happened. my opinion? get a black powder revolver if you absolutely must have a handgun for defense. i recommend a shotgun but handgun id say get an 1858 with spare cylinders. just wait a year. it seems like a long time, but its right around the corner.. you can always just save your money, save more and more until your 21 and then you buy a badass handgun


scared and nervous causes accidental shooting, maybe you should man up a little before you find a seller


Well.. the new hunting rules will be announced on February 1st, which is in 4 hours and 15 minutes (EST). The new rules will be really strict, possibly even banning some types of hunting.

Steel Rain

You must be 21 years old to own a handgun according to the law.