Should Real Estate Professionals Carry Firearms?


Ok, let me take a stab at this.  Guns are a huge topic right now.  Today, here in Prince William County Virginia, the school board accommodated a student walk out to, essentially, protest guns.  Everybody is talking about guns these days.  There’s a lot of ringing of hand and gnashing of teeth over this subject, on both sides.

There are also a lot of real estate pro’s that walk into vacant homes alone or with total strangers and some of them are honestly wondering if it would be prudent for them to get concealed weapons carry permits.

Here’s a video where I recently walked into a long vacant home by myself, as I often do.



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Imagine if someone would have been in the house.  There could be squatters, vandals, or outright robbers in any given vacant home.  I don’t think it unreasonable for a real estate pro to think about his or her personal safety.

Now, in full disclosure, I love firearms.  I was born and raised in the great state of Utah.  Hunting and shooting is a way of life.  The state half shuts down when the regular deer hunting season starts.  Though, I’m not a huge hunter, I do love the outdoors and I love visiting the range for some recreational shooting.

I also spent 8 years on active duty in the United States Marine Corps.  I was a Military Police officer for four years and they certified me as a Primary Marksmanship Instructor.  I know how to handle firearms.

However, I just recently watched a video where a couple of women defended themselves during a robbery.  They were successful but it was painful to watch.  It was a very ugly exchange.  The defenders were clearly not trained and prepared to use the firearm in their own defense.  It could have gone very badly for them.

Real estate professionals are in a particularly vulnerable situation when they enter an unknown property.  It is reasonable for them to want to try to employ methods and tactics to defend themselves.

But, I have to say that you should never take firearms lightly.  You should not carry a firearm if you are not fully trained and mentally prepared to use it.  If you’re not fully prepared to use a firearm then you probably just brought a weapon for your attacker to use against you.

I’m a huge supporter of the right to defend yourself.  I don’t think we should ever take that right lightly.  There was a time in our country’s history where there were very few police officers.  Citizens defended themselves and participated in protecting their communities.  Now we are protected and sheltered by army’s of police officers.  We rarely come face to face with the bad guys these days.  But, I challenge you to go to your local news network and sign up for their news alerts.  You will likely be overwhelmed with how much violent crime there is in your area on a daily basis.  You probably had no idea.  It’s a big eye opener on how sheltered we are as a society.

But, regardless of that fact, if you are not willing to put in the time to get trained with a firearm then you should not carry one.  And, it’s not just about knowing the physics of how to charge and discharge the weapon, it’s also about being mentally prepared to utilize a weapon against another human being.  It’s about fully mentally preparing yourself to pull a trigger and when not to.

As a Marine Corps Military Police Officer we regularly covered hypothetical shoot, don’t-shoot scenarios and they hammered into our brains escalation of force rules and firing orders.  We knew that when a weapon was fired there was a good chance someone would loose their life.  When a bullet leaves a muzzle it can never be recalled.  We knew that was something we would not hesitate to do if the circumstances required.  But, you have to be mentally prepared to potentially take a life.  Many people are not so prepared, even if it is defense of their own life.  After all, you never really know if someone intends to take your life until it’s too late.

If you are considering carrying a firearm for personally safety, I implore you to seek and complete proper training on the weapon.  Then you need to mentally prepare yourself for the real prospect of using the weapon.  You need to imagine yourself using the weapon and mentally run through scenarios where you would use the weapon and how you would go about bringing the weapon to bear.

You also have to maintain the weapon.  You have to carry the weapon so that it is safe, yet accessible when needed.  Just throwing a pistol in your purse and forgetting about it is not very safe or useful.  You should also visit the firing range at least twice a year and you should, if possible, bring the weapon as you carry it on a daily basis.

When I was in law enforcement we op checked and charged our weapons prior to every shift.  We placed the weapon in our holsters ready for use in a second’s notice.  You need to take that same kind of care if you’re going to carry.  If you’re not willing to put in that kind of effort and care then let me recommend that you carry a good canister of pepper spray.

If you are going to carry for safety and you are relatively new to firearms I would recommend a stub nosed .357 revolver such as the Rugar SP101. The picture here is of this very weapon, which I own.  The beauty of a .357 is that you can load it with 38 specials for a lighter load for those less comfortable with the bigger recoil.  It will also takes the larger .357 Magnum round for more stopping power for those who want a bigger bang.

Also, a revolver will never jam on you.  It will always fire when the trigger is pulled, unless there is a problem with the round itself.  You don’t have to worry about jacking the slid back to chamber a round.  It’s always ready.

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