How to Store Your Gun Safely for Home Defense
Home defense can get tricky, here’s a detailed guide with 8 considerations for storing your gun safely and smartly for fast access in critical situations.
- Gun storage boils down to your household dynamics and comfort level
- Consider your floor plan, family size, neighborhood, and home security system before devising a storage plan
- Go through your state laws around safe and legal storage of home defense firearms
- Take a balanced approach to create a storage plan after factoring in every household variable
Storing guns at home may seem relatively easy on the surface level, but it isn't as simple as throwing them in a box or hiding it in your cellar. It's nothing like storing a knife. Proper gun storage requires you to consider every detail of the place you need to defend, such as floor plan, jurisdiction, level of comfort with firearms, family size, state laws, safe placement, and much more.
Securing your family has a lot to do with intelligent gun storage. After you sense a threat and your adrenaline is sky-high, you don't want to take forever to defend yourself. Even a one-second delay due to your inability to retrieve the gun can endanger your family. In this write-up, we'll review the factors you need to consider before locking your firearm away.
The crux of storing guns for home defense
Gun storage can be a bit of a dilemma for homeowners. After all, there are numerous ways to store your firearms. While some may want to use a gun safe in their bedroom, others may want to have the gun safe in another area. Few even go as far as using a trigger lock or cable lock on their gun as an extra precaution.
The risk of theft, misuse by kids, suicides, homicides, and many such incidents have tightened state-level laws around firearm storage. Some state laws make it more challenging to figure out the best gun storage system. Some state regulations, in a way, restrict homeowners from storing the guns however they want.
Thus, storing these home defense guns becomes even more complex when you factor in all the laws. However, we'd like to assure you that there is no right or wrong storage configuration. The one that works for you may seem illogical for someone else. Assess your household setup to determine your firearm storage needs. It'd be unwise to overlook the very area you are trying to protect.
Home defense through a security system
Often, a hardened security system in your home can influence your storage practices. Homeowners get alerted as soon as the intruder breaches the security perimeter. Knowing this, they're more likely to store the firearm locked and unloaded in a safe, knowing they’ll have a little more time to retrieve it.
When that is not the case, homeowners like to be ever-ready. The absence of an early warning system means they can't take the risk of leaving their firearms far away, locked, and unloaded. Their tactical availability in these tense situations can save many lives. The ability to respond instantly can save the day.
7 home defense gun storage considerations
Keep these parameters in mind when deciding how to store your home defense weapon.
- Discretion: Kids shouldn't get access to guns, no matter what. Plus, you don't want intruders to spot the hiding place quickly. Thus, leaving a gun in plain sight may not be the best approach unless it's a tense neighborhood and quick retrieval is paramount. But, if danger isn't lurking around, we'd suggest hiding your gun.
- Access: You want to have the firearm at a reachable distance. The problem is, you don't know where you'll be when danger comes knocking. A gun in your bedroom is indispensable, seeing as that's where you'll likely find yourself at night when most home invasions happen. However, multiple guns stored in different touchpoints in your home can solve this problem.
- Hiding spots: A gun safe that doesn't stand out may save the day for you and your family. Thus, homeowners often get creative with their hiding spots. You can hide your gun in a fake book, closet, air vent, hidden floor spaces, fake outlets, under the bed, or use other DIY hacks to conceal the gun. Just try to make it look less obvious and more inconspicuous.
- Retrieval: Let's say you do get to your storage case but forget the key. Now, running back to retrieve it is not an option. That’s why some gun owners go as far as hiding the key near the box. Similarly, recollecting and fumbling safe codes when your intruder is closing in is not the most brilliant tactic. Easy retrieval is just as crucial in these tense moments.
- Loaded or unloaded: Some people like to leave their guns loaded, whereas others prefer to lock the magazine and not chamber a round. It all comes down to your unique preferences. If you're in a dangerous, or even hostile, neighborhood, feel free to keep the gun loaded. Since you're going to lock it up anyways, it's best to leave it loaded and ready to fire.
- State laws: Check your state laws on gun storage. In states like Massachusetts and Oregon, you can't store firearms without a locking device. New York, Connecticut, Colorado, and California only need you to do so if you reside with someone ineligible to possess firearms. You can be guilty of a misdemeanor or felony if your firearm storage doesn't comply with the state laws.
- Riots: A Heightened risk atmosphere means homeowners must take proper measures to keep their firearms in an ever-ready state. The likelihood of finding yourself in a vulnerable situation makes people store their guns for easy availability and access — riots or any other disturbance favors a more tactically convenient storage plan.
Create a personalized firearm storage plan
Having a gun won't cut it. You need to develop ways to hide it in plain sight, far away from anyone's reach yet accessible in dangerous situations. Furthermore, you must take proper care of your firearms so they're ready to function when you need them.
Create a storage plan after factoring in everything that exists in their household. A gun safe may seem practical, but it may not be the best storage configuration for your needs. The most effective storage plan is the one that gets personalized to your household dynamics. To learn more about firearm storage, check out our blogs.