Are Guns a Good Investment?

By Craig Donofrio

NEW YORK (MoneyTalksNews)—Like many things, guns can be both collectible and profitable. But before you pull the trigger, understand the risks as well as the rewards.

Would you want to own a gun not just as a weapon, but an investment? Gun sales have been rising for several years, and prices for assault rifles and ammunition have gone up.

In the video below, Money Talks News founder Stacy Johnson takes a look at whether guns are worth approaching as investment. Check it out, then read on for more.

Pros of investing in guns

There's plenty of demand. In the beginning of 2013, background checks for prospective firearms buyers through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System increased 44 percent from the prior year, according to NBC News.There were 9.5 million more NCIS checks in 2012 than in 2006, says the FBI.

Also, says The Street, more wealthy investors are taking an interest in the market of high-end collectible guns.

It's an investment you can use. While it's not recommended to regularly take unique, antique or collectible guns to the firing range, a gun likely won't lose its value if it's well-maintained.

Some weapons are a solid bet.Time says British shotguns by makers like Holland & Holland increase in value by 3 percent to 5 percent a year. The value can get a big boost depending on who previously owned the gun. Time added:

At Holt's December sale, a 12-gauge Purdey once owned by champion U.S. shooter Russell B. Atkins had an estimated value of $24,000 to $32,000 — and sold for $52,800. Then again, the Boss gun that Gardiner sold for $134,400 in December achieved its record price because of the quality of the firearm, not because the seller was legendary guitarist Eric Clapton.

A small pistol that John Dillinger carried in his sock auctioned for $95,600, more than twice the original estimate, according to The Street.