How To Sell a Gun in Texas

Map of Texas

Texas shines as a beacon for gun ownership rights, with a community of over a million concealed handgun licensees. If you're in the market to sell firearms, grasping the state and federal regulations is critical. This comprehensive guide walks you through the essentials of selling your firearm legally and safely, including buyer eligibility, private sales, and ensuring transactions comply with all legal requirements. It also introduces reliable selling platforms like CashForArms, making your sale process smooth and secure. Whether your aim is to sell a single piece or a collection, for any type of firearm, we provide the insights to ensure your transaction is not only successful but also adheres to the letter of the law.

Map of Texas
Published On:
May 26, 2023
Updated On:
March 12, 2024
minutes read

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Understanding Texas State Laws for Private Gun Sales

In Texas, you can sell guns privately without a license, provided these sales are occasional and not for ongoing profit. Always check that your buyer is legally permitted to own a gun—this means they must be over 18 years old and a Texas resident. While not required by Texas law, conducting background checks and keeping records of the gun sale are good practices for safety and record-keeping. Also, be mindful of Texas's public firearm carry laws, which apply when selling a gun.

Texas state government building

In Texas, it's important to adhere to specific sales restrictions when transferring firearms. Firstly, selling firearms to individuals under 18 is prohibited aldow there are exceptions when gifting a gun to a minor parental or guardian written consent is required. Additionally, prohibited persons, such as those with felony convictions, are not allowed to own or purchase firearms. For those holding a Texas License to Carry (LTC), the process eases slightly; LTC holders can bypass the background check requirement when buying from licensed dealers and enjoy enhanced legal protections while carrying firearms in public spaces.

Gaining a Texas LTC is both straightforward and cost-effective. The application can be started online, but completion of a training course is mandatory. This course, led by a certified instructor, covers essential knowledge and skills through both classroom learning and range instruction.

Gun Ownership and Purchase Requirements in Texas

Texas, known for its commitment to gun rights and home to over a million concealed handgun permit holders, strongly upholds the constitutional right to bear arms for defense. To buy firearms in Texas, the law requires individuals to be at least 18 years old for rifles, shotguns, and their ammunition, and 21 years old for handguns. Importantly, owning a firearm in Texas does not necessitate any permits or registration, simplifying the process for residents.

Guidelines for Private Party Gun Sales

In Texas, while adhering to private gun sales regulations and ensuring transactions are secure and responsible, sellers might also consider the convenience and additional security offered by online gun buyers. These platforms often facilitate safer transactions by providing standardized bill of sale documents, secure payment methods, and sometimes even offer services for conducting background checks through Federal Firearms License (FFL) dealers. Utilizing reputable online platforms not only aligns with best practices for selling firearms within state and federal regulations but also expands the seller’s reach to qualified buyers, making the process more efficient while ensuring compliance with legal requirements. This approach streamlines selling firearms, offering a practical solution for individuals looking to sell safely and legally.

Options for Private Gun Sales in Texas

For individuals in Texas looking to sell firearms privately, there are several viable avenues outside of personal networks. Online platforms provide a structured and secure environment for transactions, connecting sellers with a wide audience of potential buyers. Sites like CashForArms specialize in firearm sales, offering features designed to ensure compliance with state and federal regulations while prioritizing safety and legality. Beyond digital marketplaces, considering gun shows and firearm dealers who offer consignment options can be effective. Gun shows attract enthusiasts and collectors, providing a venue with high potential for finding interested buyers. Meanwhile, consignment through a local firearm dealer allows you to leverage their network and expertise, though it may involve a fee or commission. These alternatives to traditional private sales channels can enhance your ability to sell safely and legally, maximizing your reach to responsible buyers within Texas.

Required Paperwork for Selling a Gun

When selling a gun in Texas, while not legally mandated, it's highly recommended to prepare a Bill of Sale for the transaction. This document serves as a formal record of the sale, detailing the firearm's make, model, serial number, price, and the parties involved, reinforcing the transparency and legitimacy of the process. Additionally, maintaining a record of the transaction, including the buyer's information and the sale date, is a prudent practice. These records can be invaluable for personal documentation, proving compliance with state and federal regulations, and offering protection in the event of future inquiries. Though the process might seem formal, it's a straightforward step that significantly contributes to the safety and security of private gun sales.

Eligibility to Sell Guns in Texas

In Texas, residents aged 18 and older are eligible to sell guns, reflecting the state's straightforward approach to private firearms transactions. There's no requirement under state law for sellers to conduct universal background checks on potential buyers, a policy that distinguishes Texas from states with more restrictive regulations. This rule applies to private sales, allowing individuals considerable freedom in transferring ownership of firearms. However, sellers are encouraged to exercise due diligence to ensure that buyers are legally permitted to own firearms, adhering to both state and federal guidelines to maintain the integrity and safety of the transaction.

Permit Requirements for Selling Guns

In Texas, individuals engaging in private gun sales are not required to obtain a specific permit for these transactions. This simplification aligns with Texas's broader approach to gun ownership and sales, emphasizing ease of access within the framework of state and federal regulations. While the process is made more straightforward without the need for a sales permit, sellers are still advised to familiarize themselves with legal requirements around buyer eligibility and firearm transfer laws to ensure that their sales are conducted responsibly and legally.

Benefits of a Texas License to Carry (LTC)

Owning a Texas License to Carry (LTC) offers notable advantages, such as the ability for holders to bypass background checks when buying long guns from licensed dealers, streamlining the purchasing process. This license also affords extra legal protections for carrying guns in public, although it's worth noting that a NICS check remains necessary for handgun purchases by LTC holders, a measure in place since 2021. Despite this, securing an LTC in Texas is both accessible and cost-effective, designed to support residents in exercising their rights responsibly. This approach emphasizes the state's commitment to facilitating lawful firearm ownership and carrying, underscoring the LTC's value in enhancing the legal and practical aspects of gun use and ownership in Texas.


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Federal Firearms Laws Overview

Federal firearms laws lay the groundwork for gun regulation in the United States, setting essential standards for background checks, firearm sales, possession, and transportation. These overarching rules also delineate restrictions for particular groups, ensuring a unified approach to firearm safety and legality across all states. Understanding and adhering to these federal directives is imperative for gun owners aiming for lawful and responsible firearm handling. Compliance with these laws not only upholds safety but also guarantees that firearm ownership and usage align with the legal expectations established at the national level, emphasizing the importance of being well-informed about and observant of these regulations to maintain the integrity of firearm practices nationwide.

Federal Disqualification Categories

When selling firearms, it's crucial to be aware of federal disqualification categories that can prevent an individual from legally purchasing or owning a gun. These include past convictions, active warrants, and various other legal restrictions. Sellers should diligently ensure that potential buyers are not barred under these regulations, as selling to disqualified individuals could lead to serious legal consequences. This diligence helps maintain the integrity of the transaction and upholds public safety by preventing firearms from reaching those who are legally prohibited from owning them. Understanding and respecting these disqualification criteria are fundamental responsibilities for anyone involved in the sale of firearms.

Restrictions for Private Sellers

For private sellers of firearms, it's essential to follow specific restrictions to ensure lawful transactions. This includes not selling firearms to anyone the seller knows or suspects to be ineligible for firearm ownership. Adhering to Section 46.06 of the Texas Penal Code is mandatory, which details additional constraints on firearm transfers. Interstate sales are not allowed, emphasizing the importance of transactions occurring within state boundaries. Furthermore, selling firearms to individuals under 18 years old requires written consent from a parent or legal guardian, safeguarding against unlawful possession by minors. These guidelines help maintain legal compliance and promote safe firearm sales.

Background Check and Record-Keeping

For firearm sale through dealers, background checks are performed via the NICS system, though holders of a Texas License to Carry (LTC) may bypass this step. While not legally required by federal or Texas law for private sellers to conduct background checks or keep records of sales, it's a prudent practice to consider. Private sellers have the option to facilitate checks through a Federal Firearms License (FFL) dealer. Moreover, it's wise for sellers to maintain a record of the sale for their own records. This approach enhances transaction safety and ensures a traceable history of firearm ownership, offering peace of mind and legal protection.

The Process of Selling a Gun in Texas

Selling a gun to another person in Texas does not require universal background checks for private sales or transactions at gun shows. However, penalties may apply if involved in illegal transactions, such as selling to ineligible individuals or handling defaced or restricted firearms. To ensure a compliant sale, private sellers have the option to enlist a Federal Firearms License (FFL) dealer to conduct background checks and maintain records for a fee. Background checks and maintaining records, with the dealer charging a fee for their services.

Gun Ownership in Texas

In Texas, gun ownership is subject to certain restrictions, especially concerning individuals with criminal backgrounds or mental health issues. Federal disqualification categories impact the ability to purchase firearms, including convictions, warrants, pre-trial releases, domestic violence misdemeanors, controlled substance abuse, dishonorable discharge from the military, renounced U.S. citizenship, and illegal alien status. Despite these restrictions, Texas does not impose a limit on the number of firearms an individual can own, provided they meet the legal criteria for gun possession under both state and federal laws. This policy underscores the importance of understanding and complying with legal requirements to ensure responsible gun ownership.

Hunting rifle on a gun case

Ensuring Safe and Legal Gun Transactions

In Texas revolves around adhering to essential principles and best practices. Whether you're buying, selling, or simply transferring ownership, it's crucial to follow guidelines that guarantee compliance with both state and federal laws. This includes verifying the eligibility of gun buyers, adhering to background check requirements when applicable, and understanding the specific legalities related to firearm sales in the Lone Star State. Additionally, maintaining clear records of transactions and using reputable platforms or intermediaries for sales can further safeguard the legality of the process. By committing to these standards, participants in gun transactions can uphold the highest levels of safety and legal integrity, ensuring that firearms are transferred responsibly within Texas.

Meeting the Buyer in Person

Texas offers a practical approach to selling firearms privately, yet it comes with certain responsibilities. Texas laws do not mandate private sellers to perform background checks on potential buyers, provided they aren't known to be prohibited from firearm possession. Nonetheless, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) suggests utilizing the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) as a precautionary measure to confirm a buyer's legal eligibility for firearm ownership.

Furthermore, Texas imposes restrictions on firearm possession for specific individuals, such as those with certain criminal convictions, subjects of protective orders, or individuals adjudicated as mentally ill. The Texas Department of Public Safety is informed by court clerks about individuals ordered to receive inpatient mental health services or deemed incompetent to stand trial, affecting their firearm possession rights. Sellers should be cognizant of these legal stipulations to ensure their transactions do not inadvertently facilitate unlawful firearm ownership, reinforcing the importance of diligence and legal compliance in private gun sales.

It's important for anyone considering selling a gun collection or single firearm in Texas to be aware of these laws and regulations and to follow the guidance of the ATF to avoid any potential criminal charges.

Documenting Your Gun Sale

Is a crucial step for ensuring transparency and legal compliance, even in private transactions. While neither federal law nor Texas law mandates private sellers to maintain a record of the sale, it's highly advisable to prepare a bill of sale. This document acts as proof that the seller took due diligence to verify the gun buyer wasn't prohibited from owning a firearm. Keeping this record benefits both parties, providing a clear transaction history and safeguarding the seller by demonstrating their commitment to responsible firearm sales. It's a simple yet effective way to contribute to the overall safety and legality of gun ownership and sales.

Senior man signing paperwork

Selling Different Types of Firearms in Texas

Selling firearms in Texas requires a solid understanding of the state's specific regulations for various types of guns. Whether you're looking to sell handguns, rifles, shotguns, NFA Class III firearms, entire gun collections, or antique firearms, it's crucial to comply with Texas's legal framework. Each category has its own set of rules, from necessary licenses to conducting required background checks for certain types of transactions. This guide will navigate you through the essential steps for each firearm type, ensuring your sale is lawful, secure, and successful in the Texas market.

How to Sell a Shotgun in Texas

Beginning with an understanding of Texas's legal landscape is crucial when planning to sell a shotgun. Although the state doesn't require background checks for private transactions, confirming that the prospective buyer is legally permitted to own a firearm, specifically that they're at least 18 years old, is a prudent step. While not legally required, drafting a bill of sale to detail the transaction can serve as evidence of your diligence. For sellers looking for additional assurance, opting for a voluntary background check through a Federal Firearms License (FFL) dealer can provide peace of mind. This measure not only ensures the sale adheres to Texas's legal standards but also promotes a secure and straightforward selling experience.

How to Sell a Handgun in Texas

Selling a handgun in Texas involves a few important steps to ensure compliance with state regulations. Although Texas law doesn't mandate background checks for private firearm sales, confirming that the buyer is legally eligible and over 21 years of age is crucial. While not a legal requirement, creating a bill of sale can serve as valuable documentation of the transaction, underscoring your commitment to conducting the sale responsibly. For added assurance, you might consider a voluntary background check through a Federal Firearms License (FFL) dealer. This proactive approach helps ensure your handgun sale is fully compliant with Texas laws, offering peace of mind and a secure transaction process.

How to Sell a Rifle in Texas

To ensure a legal and secure sale of a rifle in Texas, it's important to align with state guidelines. While background checks aren't mandatory for private sales in Texas, confirming that the buyer is at least 18 years old is crucial for compliance. Although not a legal necessity, preparing a bill of sale is advised to document the sale and reflect your diligence. If you're aiming for additional reassurance, a voluntary background check conducted through a Federal Firearms License (FFL) dealer can verify the buyer's eligibility. By taking these steps, you enhance the integrity of the transaction, facilitating a responsible and compliant process to sell a rifle in Texas.

How to Sell an NFA Class III Gun in Texas

Selling an NFA Class III gun in Texas involves a more complex set of regulations due to the stringent controls on these types of firearms. To navigate this process correctly, ensure that both you and the buyer comply with all federal regulations, including those specific to NFA items. It's crucial to transfer the firearm through a Federal Firearms License (FFL) dealer who is authorized to handle NFA transactions. This includes conducting a thorough background check and ensuring the buyer has the necessary tax stamp. Although Texas laws may not add additional requirements beyond federal mandates, maintaining a detailed bill of sale is still recommended for your records. This level of diligence is essential when selling NFA Class III items, ensuring the transaction adheres to all legal standards and is conducted securely within Texas.

How to Sell a Gun Collection in Texas

To sell a gun collection in Texas, consider working with a Federal Firearms License (FFL) dealer to ensure all transactions comply with legal requirements. This approach is particularly useful for verifying the legality of each firearm in the collection, including any NFA Class III items. While Texas doesn't mandate background checks for private sales, using an FFL dealer can streamline the process, ensuring each piece is sold responsibly. Always create a bill of sale for record-keeping, underscoring your commitment to a lawful transaction. This method not only simplifies selling your gun collection in Texas but also aligns with best practices, ensuring a smooth and compliant sale.

How to Sell Antique Firearms in Texas

Selling antique firearms in Texas requires understanding specific nuances in the law, as these items are often exempt from standard firearm regulations due to their age and historical value. It's important to ascertain that the firearm qualifies as an antique under both state and federal guidelines, generally meaning it was manufactured before 1899. While Texas does not mandate background checks for private sales of antique firearms, maintaining a bill of sale is advised to document the transaction's details. For an added measure of due diligence, you may still choose to verify the gun buyer's eligibility to own a firearm. This careful approach ensures that your sale of antique firearms in Texas is conducted legally and with respect for the item's historical significance.

Age and classification requirements, as well as selling guidelines, should be followed when dealing with antique firearms.

Staying Updated on Gun Laws

Staying informed about the latest gun laws and regulations is essential for gun owners and enthusiasts in Texas. Since firearm laws can change and vary significantly from one state to another, staying current helps ensure that you're not inadvertently breaking the law. Regularly consulting reliable sources, such as state government websites, legal advisories, or gun rights organizations, can provide you with up-to-date information on any changes or new legislation. This proactive approach is key to responsible gun ownership and can help you navigate the complexities of firearm regulations, ensuring your transactions and ownership remain within the bounds of the law.


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Texas Penal Code

Under Texas Penal Code, unlawfully transferring certain weapons constitutes a Class A misdemeanor. However, if the offense involves transferring a handgun to a person who's ineligible to own one, it escalates to a state jail felony. It's crucial to understand these distinctions to avoid severe legal consequences when selling or transferring firearms in Texas.

Importance of Compliance and Safety in Transactions

Ensuring compliance with legal standards and prioritizing safety in firearm transactions is key for private sellers in Texas. This diligence safeguards sellers against legal repercussions and underscores the significance of responsible gun ownership. Moreover, it plays a vital role in preventing the transfer of firearms to unqualified individuals, contributing to overall community safety.

Tips to Sell Safely and Get the Best Price

For a successful and safe firearm sale in Texas, ensure the gun is well-maintained and operational. Clearly detail the firearm's make, model, caliber, and any included accessories in your description. A thorough bill of sale, complemented by any receipts and warranty details, is essential for record-keeping. Concluding the sale with a focus on legal compliance, in alignment with federal, state, and local regulations, not only secures a fair price but also reinforces responsible ownership and transfer practices.

Cleaning and Maintenance

For a successful firearm sale on platforms like CashForArms, it's crucial to present your firearm in the best possible condition. Ensuring the gun is in optimal working order and thoroughly cleaned not only boosts its value but also appeals to potential buyers. Proper cleaning and maintenance signal to buyers that the firearm has been well cared for, enhancing its attractiveness and potentially commanding a better price.

Accurate Description

When listing your firearm for sale with an gun buyer, it's essential to provide a detailed and accurate description. This should cover the make, model, caliber, and any included accessories. A precise and transparent description ensures potential buyers are well-informed, facilitating a straightforward transaction and increasing the chances of a successful sale, adhering to best practices for engaging with gun buyers.


For a secure transaction with an gun buyer, it's critical to prepare comprehensive documentation. Create a detailed bill of sale that includes the sale date, details of both the buyer and seller, and specific information about the firearm, like it's make, model, and serial number. This document serves as a protective measure for both parties in the event of any disputes. Also, include all pertinent paperwork, such as purchase receipts and warranty information, to provide a thorough record of the firearm's history and the terms of the sale, ensuring clarity and accountability in the transaction.

Completing the Sale and Transferring Firearm Ownership

Once you've secured a gun buyer, finalizing the sale and transferring firearm ownership must be done legally and in accordance with all relevant regulations. Ensure you adhere to federal, state, and local laws, which may include conducting background checks and obtaining the necessary permits or licenses. This adherence not only guarantees the legality of the transaction but also reinforces the responsible transfer of firearm ownership, maintaining compliance and safety throughout the process.


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Using Online Platforms for Selling Guns in Texas

Using an online platform like CashForArms for selling guns in Texas offers a comprehensive service that simplifies the process for sellers. CashForArms handles the complexities of legal compliance, including background checks and adherence to federal, state, and local regulations, facilitating a hassle-free transaction. When you list your firearm on, the platform manages the sale details, ensuring the transfer of ownership is conducted legally and securely. This service not only expands your reach to potential buyers but also provides peace of mind that all aspects of the sale comply with the necessary legal requirements, making it a convenient choice for selling firearms in Texas.

Veteran disassembling a firearm

Selling a Deceased Person's Gun

Selling a firearm from a deceased person's estate requires careful adherence to legal procedures. In Texas, the executor or administrator of the estate is typically responsible for managing the deceased's assets, including firearms. It's crucial to ensure that the sale complies with all federal, state, and local regulations. The process involves verifying that the buyer is legally allowed to own a firearm, which may include conducting a background check and ensuring the firearm is not classified under special categories like NFA items unless the appropriate transfer procedures are followed. Documentation is key; a bill of sale should be prepared to record the transaction details, providing a clear trail of ownership transfer. This careful approach ensures the sale respects legal requirements and the intentions of the estate.

Using Cash for Arms to Sell Your Guns

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Using Cash for Arms is a safe and secure option for selling your firearm. By choosing a reputable buyer, you can ensure a smooth and legal transaction while getting the best market value for your firearm.

General Questions & Answers

How can I sell a gun in Texas?

To sell a gun in Texas, you need to verify eligibility, find a buyer, negotiate the sale terms, exercise caution during the transaction, and comply with all applicable laws.

How can I legally sell a gun in Texas?

To legally sell a gun in Texas, ensure compliance with federal and state laws. While Texas doesn't require private sellers to conduct background checks, it's a federal crime to sell a firearm to someone prohibited from owning one. Verify the buyer's residency in Texas. If uncertain about a buyer's eligibility, consider using a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL) for a background check.

How can I sell a used gun in Texas?

Ensure the buyer is eligible: over 18 (or 21 for handguns), a Texas resident, with no disqualifying history.

What do I need to sell a gun in Texas?

Verify the buyer's age and residency with their ID and consider a Bill of Sale to document the transaction. Selling to ineligible persons is a federal crime.

How can I sell a gun online legally in Texas?

Use a reputable Licensed Firearms Dealer (FFL) or an online platform that complies with laws.

Can I sell a deceased person's gun in Texas?

Yes, if you're the legal heir or executor. Follow any additional legal requirements for special category firearms.

Where can I sell a gun privately in Texas?

Consider online gun buyer's or local firearm forums for private sales.

What paperwork is needed to sell a gun in Texas?

No specific paperwork is mandated, but a Bill of Sale is recommended for record-keeping.

Who is able to sell a gun in Texas?

Residents can sell guns privately without universal background checks, adhering to age and residency requirements.

Do I need a permit to sell guns in Texas?

No specific permit is needed for private gun sale in Texas.



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By choosing a reputable buyer like Cash for Arms, you can ensure a safe and secure sale of your firearm, protecting yourself from potential legal complications.

By following the guidelines and recommendations in this article, you can successfully navigate the process of selling a gun in Texas. Remember to always adhere to federal and state regulations, as well as local laws, to ensure a legal, safe, and profitable transaction.


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