Choosing the Right Handgun for Home Defense: A Beginner’s Guide

handgun for home defense

Were you aware that there are between 1 million and 3.7 million home burglaries every year in the United States? Making the decision to purchase a handgun for home defense can be a daunting and intimidating process, especially for first-time buyers.

Take a deep breath and imagine you are at the shooting range. You have in your hands a gun that feels solid and secure.

You take aim and pull the trigger – the sound of the gunshot echoes in your ears, and you hit your target with ease. That feeling of accomplishment is the result of choosing the right handgun for home defense, and in this blog post, we will be your guide.

Below we have a beginner’s guide to choosing the right handgun for home defense.

Understanding Your Needs

Purchasing a handgun is not an impulse buy. It requires thorough consideration to ensure your needs match the type of handgun that would be best suited for you. Understanding your requirements is a critical step in selecting a handgun.

Home protection is the primary reason most people choose to own a handgun, but it comes down to what method of defense (if threatened in your home) would suit the person most appropriately.

Factors like the quantity and layout of your house, small children, or if you have nosy pets, for example, are essential when choosing the kind of gun you’ll utilize in self-defense. Different types of handguns come with their pros and cons from safety features to pragmatic factors like size, accuracy, and methods to carry the firearm.

As with most things, it’s essential to prioritize the most critical safety factors over things like price since price or fashion-forward handgun styles fail in any emergency self-defense situations, making them unfit for their intended purpose.

Firearm Safety

Firearm safety is crucial to every gun owner. While owning a handgun for self-defense, make sure you have appropriate training or knowledge about firearm safety. Before purchasing a gun, ensure that you have undergone training on proper gunning and usage practices.

Chesapeake Gunslingers advises every customer that before handling firearms, you need to have in-depth knowledge of the potential risk and relevant precautions, from gun handling to safe target positioning.

With proper training, you build muscle memory to perform the proper and safe handling methods when the situation demands it. Keeping the trigger off and having gun owners store their firearms in safe spaces (such as a gun safe or cabinet) reduces the possibility of unauthorized access, further emphasizing safe practices in owning a gun.

Ammunition Selection

When choosing a handgun, it’s best not to compromise on ammunition since it determines maximizing effectiveness in stopping an attacker. Ammunition penetrates physical barriers, hence compatibility between the gun and the bullets is critical.

Chesapeake Gunslingers provides tips on how to choose the right ammunition: consider caliber, penetration, pullback, and ricochet, among other relevant factors. Lead bullets, hollow points, steel-capped rounds, or each unique caliber level are designed to work perfectly with the particular gun to minimize misfire chances, especially in high-tension and threatening situations.

It’s vital to educate oneself on the kind of ammunition suitable for your handgun, alongside testing the said ammunition on the gun, before assuming complete compatibility and working under pressure circumstances.

Firing Action

Firing actions refer to how a gun propels a bullet out of its chamber. So, what kind of action do you undertake?

Does your preference guide you towards revolvers, a SA/DA handgun, a Double/Single-action handgun, with each of them having distinct firing modes?

A single action requires the operator to pull the hammer back to full cock before firing, while a double requires two-stage trigger pulls. SA/DA handguns have pistols built with the same double/single-action features in their firing system, offering a wider range of versatile applications.

Single-action pistols offer a precise shot when accuracy is crucial. The standard and double-action handy in most situations due to their wider range of coverage and robust shock absorption properties.


Ergonomics primarily focuses on comfort and simplicity with an emphasis on shooting ability efficiency. Almost every handgun comes with design improvements towards users’ usability since un-innovative designs cause unwarranted hand fatigue, weak stability, discomfort on desired trigger squeezing, lower accuracy, and precision when shooting.

Choosing a handgun with a proper grip (angle and texture), forward weighting with perfect balancing properties for ease of steady handling, and the robustness to reduce noise and recoil control is necessary for more comfortable shooting regimes. Evaluating grip types indoors or through range recreation is critical in finding a well-suited handgun.

Sight Systems

Fixed or open sighting systems are common within small-sized, concealable handguns. Fixed systems are often essential for fighting in close quarters. Proximity aiming slightly appropriate for sight misalignment in high-stress events. Expertly made, factory-quality acquisition has inherent recoil resistance properties which guarantee calibration when you need it most.

Handguns come with different sighting options meager highly functional systems, larger quality sights to gain maximum accuracy, or additional self-luminous or lighting setups for taking better-aimed shots in poorly lit areas. With that in mind, users have to evaluate individual needs and assure acquisition precision and shot aiming or suppressing stray shot risk probability.

Time to Shop for a Handgun for Home Defense

Choosing the right handgun for home defense is an important decision. Be sure to consult a qualified expert and handle multiple firearms before selecting a handgun for home defense. To get started, use this beginner’s guide as a foundation for researching and learning more about handguns and home defense. Start protecting your home today!

When you’re ready to make a purchase, we’ll be here to help you with quality firearm options. Please contact us if you have any questions.

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