How Do I Choose the Right Weapon for Home Defense?

A question many people ask is, “How do I know which home defense weapon is right for me?”. Well unfortunately the answer for you is, it depends. First and foremost, when recommending a weapon for home defense I will ask my clients a few questions:

  1. What are the legalities of owning firearms in your country, state, county, city etc. This alone can narrow your choices quite a bit due to draconian and unconstitutional gun laws in some parts of the world, and even our country.
  2. After you’ve figured out what is legal in your neck of the woods you must ask yourself, what is my budget? Now you don’t need a $4000-dollar rifle to defend your home, but a general rule of thumb is purchasing the most quality firearm you can comfortable afford. After all, if you can’t pay the bills and end up on the street you won’t have a house to protect anyway.
  3. Now that you’ve identified the legalities of your area and set a limit on your purchase. You should take a real hard look at yourself and ask, how skilled am I with a firearm? This question will help you decide on a type of firearm for protecting the homestead. Generally, I advise on choosing a Shotgun, Semi-automatic pistol, or a semi-automatic rifle such as an ar-15 or ak-47/74 style firearm. Shotguns used to have a limited capacity but now with the introduction of innovations like Keltic’s KSG that is an issue of the past. You can hold 14+1 shells and if you need more than that for a home defense situation, I hope you have backup. A good compact or full-size semi auto pistol like the modular P320 or the venerable Glock safe action pistol will allow you to keep the firearm in close and not knock on the corners as your turning them if needing to move about the house. last but certainly not least is old reliable, the semi auto rifle, if properly trained this can be an amazing home defense tool that will allow you to neutralize a threat with quickness and return your home to a safe environment. This type of firearm in its standard configuration can be a bit unwieldy in tight spaces, I recommend going with a pistol or short barrel set up.
  4. Occupants in the house play a huge role in proper choice of home defense tools, over penetration is a serious consideration and ammo selection is a way to mitigate the injury or death of a loved whether 2 legged or 4. Knowing your target and what lay behind it, as well as the other weapon safety rules is very important. Hollow points in pistols, birdshot and sometimes buck shot in shotguns, and a round designed to prevent overpenetration like the 300 Blackout will allow you to take a well-aimed shot without the fear of the round going through the target and wounding someone behind.

At the end of the day you need to choose something that you will be able to practice with often at your local range. Measure the longest distance in your house and become a master at that range and closer. Choose something with a caliber that will be affordable for you to buy lots of and one that also doesn’t have to much recoil to manage.