|The Unknown |
As a weekend warrior at a shop that does several per week, I’ll answer for myself and our store: It all depends on the transfer. Guy A wants gun B, store C ships it to us with all paperwork correct - absolutely worth the $25 we charge.
However, when you get guns that show up with no name or number, and we’re tracking down the phone sales girls to find out who ordered a Heritage 22 from Wyoming or whatever, it quickly becomes a losing transaction.
In my opinion, yes, it’s a benefit. The model is too fluid to take a stand one way or the other. In most markets you need to work a lot of angles to make it go. Online, retail, auctions, accessories, etc. Transfers are a logical step on that path.
A few near me act like it's a burden. One of them wants like $75 or if it's a gun they have in stock they want some percentage. Obviously I don't bother doing transfers with them. A few others charge $25 and don't mind doing them.
The way I see it as just a business owner. Is If someone is doing a transfer to your shop, they're going to visit your shop at least twice regarding the transfer. Once to alert you, once to do paperwork or pick it up, and to pick it up. If you have a decently stocked store, the chances of them buying something from you that is on your shelves is pretty good. Any traffic in a store, Is good for business.
"Traditional gun stores" here were $40 to $75 for years locally, and seemed to do transfers begrudgingly. Competition from "new business model" gun stores or transfer only guys have driven the prices down.
Stores are realizing $25-$35 profit with no work other than the acquisition/disposition, is just as good as making 10% on a new gun they have to order, pay for, stock and hope someone buys.
Sliced bread, the greatest thing since the 1911.
|Not really from Vienna|
The one I use doesn’t have much enthusiasm for accepting transfers of new guns. They’ve talked about raising the fee from $20 up to $50 for guns coming in from Buds and Palmetto.
|3° that never cooled|
It varies, a LOT. For years I did business with a well stocked LGS. I made I don't know how many purchases directly from him. He was also happy to do transfers. He told me he considered transfers($30.00),"free money". But some shops display an arrogant, almost hostile, attitude when asked about, or while actually doing, a transfer. A very nice new shop in a smaller town displayed this arrogance about transfers, and toward customers in general. Shame, always believed they could have done very well, but that "we don't really need your business" attitude finally did them in. Another new FFL in town started business, advertising he would do transfers, just as I was considering an online purchase from a private party. So I contacted the new FFL about it. He got upset, implying I was attempting to involve him in something illegal. He indicated all transfers must be FFL to FFL. He was soon out of the FFL business. Of course I understand if an FFL chooses not to receive anything from a private party, but it's certainly not illegal. So I contacted another FFL, and had the gun legally transferred without incident. As I said, varies a LOT.
COTEP #640, NRA Life
|On the DL|
Local Pawn Shop Guy takes good care of us, $25 per item, plus $5 per 4473. Can have multiple items on one form. The $5 is the fee that the state charges, this is a pass-through, Pawn Shop Guy does not get any portion of that.
He also has a very small selection of firearms for sale at reasonable (but not great) prices.
A mind is a terrible thing.
|Step by step walk the thousand mile road|
There are a bunch of cost and operational issues people overlook.
First, figure out what it costs for the shop to be open for you to come into to do a transfer. Rent, utilities, insurance, storage (yes, the 4473s are held for 20 years, so there is a cost associated with storage), salary, the lot. Then divide that by the number of minutes the shop is open. That gives a per minute operational cost. Figure handling a transfer takes about 30 minutes, if you are efficient (10 minutes before, 10 minutes while you are there, and 10 minutes after you leave). Include the costs for BATFE audits of the records too. That gives you an idea of what the shop should be charging.
If you think it is easier or takes less time, by all means, enlighten us on what is involved and how shops can speed things up and save money on transfers.
If you want a means to measure the actual cost for a gun in stock at a local shop, takes Bud's price, add 5%, plus $20 S&H, then add another 20% to cover the operational costs of having it there for you to fondle. While you can get it from Bud's for cost plus 5%, plus $20 plus the transfer fee, the dealer has to cover the cost of having it in stock (they shelled out money to have it to sell) and the staff time to show it to potential buyers (most of whom fondle but don't buy).
Then there is another cost issue: sales tax. Most people erroneously believe there is no sales tax on goods bought out of state. In Virginia, you are still liable for the sales tax on all goods bought outside the Commonwealth. Most don't pay it. The local gun shop, however, has no choice but to include that 6% on your invoice.
Then if the shop comes in at less than the actual cost for a transfer, decide if you will help defray that loss by purchasing something from their retail stock.
If they charge considerably more, or won't do them at all, ask yourself why. Might it be they had some awful experience like an incoming handgun transfer from a non-licensee who decided to ship a $2K collectible Luger via the USPS and the box and gun were damaged en route and thus discovered by the Postal Inspection Service. It only takes a few bad experiences like that to make a shop stop accepting transfers at all or from non-licensees.
People often think the gun business is lucrative. If you came to me and asked me to open a gun shop for you, I'd first do everything in my power to steer you to a better means of making money, like the craps table.
I'd write more on this topic, but I am confident that I'll be lambasted by people that are not licensees. Since I have other things to do, like wash the cats and express their anal glands, I go do that instead of responding to my critics.
Nice is overrated
"It's every freedom-loving individual's duty to lie to the government."
Airsoftguy, June 29, 2018
Excellent post Sig2340.
One of the shops I use will transfer guns for me as long as the gun isn't one they have in stock or they can order, they'll work with me on price. This policy is very sensible to me. I didn't ask the other shop because I don't need them to do transfers for me.
Almost every gun I have purchased in the past 8 years has been a direct individual officer program gun from SIG. Shops charge me between 25-35 for the transfer and the phone call, several shops in my area do transfers.
CMSGT USAF (Retired)
Chief of Police (Retired)
Florida Class K Licensed Instructor
NRA Certified LE Handgun/Shotgun/Rifle Instructor
SIG and Glock and Springfield 1911 Armorer
|Muzzle flash |
My last 3 guns have been purchased from Gallery of Guns through GunGenie, and I've chosen for transfer and pickup at a little shop in Wylie, Texas. That shop doesn't seem to have much of a stock, but I've had excellent service on my transfers. He charges $14.99 "additional fee", which I assume is his transfer fee--it's been the same on every gun. I admit that it's about a half-hour trip to his shop, but I like him and will continue to do business there.
I don't know what the transfer fee is at my local LGS--it's been so long since I did that with them, I'm sure it has probably changed. I have bought guns from the LGS, and ammo, too--and used to shoot at the attached range regularly. As I've aged I've done less shooting.
Texan by choice, not accident of birth
When they ask me, "Paper or plastic?" I just say, "Doesn't matter to me. I am bi-sacksual."
Lewisville Pawn in Lewisville, TX. $10 transfer fee and it's been that way forever.
|Hop head |
some places like Bud's will sell online and have the items ship directly from a distributor,
that lowers the cost to then significantly, and makes it hard for FFL's , esp small ones, to get those deals,
as far as transfers,
I charge $25, and NFA is $50,
I generally don't mind, but I am not always there when the UPS/Fedup guys arrive,
So if I have to play tag with the driver,, that can be a pita
the biggest PITA is some of the buyers, they get a tracking number, call me the moment they get a hit on it, and want to get it now,,
then get pissy when I ask them what they are talking about, I,m not at the shop at the moment (we have limited hours, and folks know that) ,,
|Invest Early, Invest Often|
I kind have the same question about Davidson's Gallery Of Guns purchases.
I was looking at P365's, the local guy is $549 and Davidson's is $499. To me it is not the $50, but the better warranty that Davidson's offers.
But the local guy is part of the program, so it must have some benefits for him.
"Elections have consequences, and at the end of the day, I won. So I think on that one I trump you.” - President Barack Obama
|If you see me running |
try to keep up
Yep, IF you could have a steady stream of customers and IF you could get them in and out in 15 minutes it might be easy money. It never works out like that though.
Some FFLs think if they raise prices on transfers or they refuse to receive transfers for what they sell they will resolve the problems with customers buying online. They are the ones that will go out of business. The gun business has changed and FFLs need to change with it or be left behind. Many firearms are cheaper online and until every state forces online businesses to charge sales tax it will not change.
To answer the OP, I’m home based and take the money any way I can get it. I’ll actually tell customers to buy online if it’s cheaper. Profit margins for firearms are so low I’ll make the same doing a transfer plus most customers appreciate me telling them and will be repeat customers.
|Get Off My Lawn|
In TX, all of my gun purchases were from a LGS, my preferred way of buying. But in my prior state, the majority of my purchases were transfers and some PPTs (face to face private party). I had used the same FLL for 10 years, he operated a kitchen table business. Towards the end of my CA years, many shops weren't crazy about transfers and absolutely hated PPTs. The former because of lack of safe storage (10 day waiting period), and the latter because there was no money in it, they made just 10 bucks on top of the $25 that went to the state. I've seen transfer pricing from 25-60 bucks on top of the states $25 DROS fee.
"I’m not going to read Time Magazine, I’m not going to read Newsweek, I’m not going to read any of these magazines; I mean, because they have too much to lose by printing the truth"- Bob Dylan, 1965
|Ugly Bag of|
My local FFL is a manufacturer (no retail store). He charges $20 for a transfer, but no charge for CCW holders.
Endowment Life Member, NRA • Member, Arizona Citizens Defense League
|Tinker Sailor Soldier Pie|
Why would a ccw holder be exempt from paying a transfer fee to the shop? That doesn't make much sense. Is he simply doing the transfer out of the goodness of his heart?
Acta Non Verba
NRA Life Member (Patron)
God, Family, Guns, Country
"My guns are always loaded."
What whiskey will not cure, there is no cure.
My FFL does - He charges $25.00 per transfer and I usually buy a few boxes of ammo, one of his companies shirts, or something else he is selling when I go by to pick up my transfer.....Mark
|A teetotaling |
There was a guy near me (he moved 50 miles away) that does transfers as his main source of income. Works out of his house. $10 with LTC, and $15 without. When he's not home his wife handles them. He told me he averages 20 a day. Not too bad when you figure there's no inventory and little overhead. Pretty much pure profit.
Men fight for liberty and win it with hard knocks. Their children, brought up easy, let it slip away again, poor fools. And their grandchildren are once more slaves.
My favorite LGS owner actually encouraged me to order from Davidson's, because of the warranty, if I wanted something he didn't have in stock. He didn't mind doing a transfer for me, ever, though I did make several purchases straight from his stock or have him order things in for me over the years. I say these things in the past tense because he has recently closed his shop, due to family health concerns and sagging business. There's another good shop near me, but they'll have to work way hard to become my "new favorite."
God bless America.
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