Charlotte, NC • Since 1959


Hyatt Guns provides firearm appraisal services both at the shop and at off-site locations depending on individual circumstances.  It is more advantageous to conduct the appraisal at the shop location.  Many firearms require an in-depth inspection requiring specialized tools, proper lighting, gunsmith skills, and other resources that are not available at an off-site location.  While our appraisers have considerable experience in all types of firearms, specialized firearms may require specialized expertise and more than one inspection for you to obtain the most accurate result.  We have additional expert appraisers at the shop with this specialized knowledge for not just firearms but an assortment of other items (knives, swords, militaria, and coins) that maybe needed to fully appraise your collection.   Transporting your firearms is easy and legal.  We will be happy to advise you on the best methods to fit your needs.

Hyatt Guns can conduct appraisals for a variety of reasons.  Insurance requirements, sale or transfer of firearms, inheritance and estate disposition are some of the more frequent services requested.

The original collector may have had extensive knowledge of the firearms, however, surviving partners, executers, estate lawyers, and bank officials may not.  Care must be taken to ensure that you receive a fair and accurate appraisal to assist in your decisions.  Realistic values by trained professionals as well as knowledge of the various laws and regulations involving firearms will be extremely valuable information as you make decisions on the disposition of your firearms.   Many friends and family, as well as Law Enforcement personnel, may not know the complicated laws and regulations involved in the sale of firearms.  Consulting with a Federal Firearm Licensed dealer can save complications resulting in severe criminal and civil penalties.  Various tools, such as background checks, are available only to Federal Firearm Licensed dealers and are essential for your protection.

 Setting up an Appraisal

  • Call Hyatt Guns at 704-394-0387 to speak to an appraiser.  Please know the number of firearms to be appraised and the reason for the appraisal. 
  • Please limit the number of persons attending the appraisal to the owner/primary decision maker and one other. This applies to both off-site and at the shop appraisals.  More persons in the room increases distractions and interruptions resulting in mistakes and a much lengthier process.  At the conclusion of the appraisal, questions from additional persons will be answered as time permits.
  • If an off-site appraisal please have the correct address available. Have the firearms in a location accessible to the appraiser.  Make sure there is sufficient lighting and room to work.  Phone service is also essential for internet access. Internet access is needed for our vast library of resources and other research purposes during the appraisal. 
  • The owner or primary decision maker must be on site to provide information if needed.

Frequently asked questions FAQ

Why do I need a Firearm Appraisal?

There are many reasons to have your firearm(s) appraised.  Insurance companies may require both an itemized list and a value of your firearms to issue a policy.  An executer of an estate may be required by the court system to provide actual values before gifting or selling the firearms.  Having an actual value assists you in determining the disposition of your firearms with the knowledge that you are receiving a fair price if you do decide to sell.

How long are the appraisals valid?

Like most things, the value of firearms can be affected by a lot of factors.  Inflation, politics, changing laws, and current events all can affect the value of your firearms.  There is no standard length of time which covers all these factors. As far as Insurance Agencies go, each brand and company will have their own guidelines and policies to determine how frequent appraisals need to be updated, if any.

What determines the value of a firearm?

In short, condition and availability are the largest considerations.  A rare firearm in perfect unaltered condition is worth more than any other category of firearm.  Modifications and refinishing are two of the most common reasons why a rare firearm may be valued at a lower number than expected.  Overall, condition in both appearance and functionality are the major considerations in modern production firearms.  Accessories such as the original box and paperwork with the firearm can make a huge difference in the value in both present day and collectible firearms.  Having a professional who is familiar with these details evaluate your firearm can be a huge advantage if selling is consideration. 

Can I sell my firearm to a friend?

This is more complicated than a short answer can cover. To start there are numerous laws on the local, state, and federal level that must be considered.  In North Carolina, any handgun sale, gift, or transfer must involve either a Carry Concealed Handgun permit or a Handgun Purchase permit being presented to the seller by the buyer.   Records keeping of the transaction is essential to both parties.  Hyatt Guns can conduct a person-to-person transfer which will satisfy all the legal requirements.   Sales or gifts across state lines are illegal under federal law and must be conducted by a Federal Firearms Dealer.  While Rifle and Shotgun sales do not require a permit in North Carolina, the seller still has a responsibility to make sure the buyer can legally possess a firearm.  The most effective way to do this is to transfer the firearm through a dealer with the resources to conduct a background check.   This will protect the seller from severe Criminal and Civil actions involving the transfer.  Sales, gifts or transfers to a person across state lines should be conducted by Federally Licensed Dealers to ensure compliance with all laws and regulations.

How can I sell my inherited/estate firearms?

The first step is determining the value.  You can conduct your own research and come up with a price that appears to be fair.  This can take hours of time and without the training and the up-to-date knowledge of a professional, you may still undervalue or overvalue by a significant margin.  There are many factors in determining value (see “What determines the value of a firearm”).   

 Then you need to determine who you can sell to.  There are thousands of laws regulating the sale of a firearm.  There are as many rules and regulations   This is quite probably the most regulated industry in the country. Conducting background checks and keeping your firearms from falling into the wrong hands are a major concern.  Consulting with a reliable dealer can protect you from the many pitfalls involving firearms.

 The next issue is where are you going to sell them?  Generally, your residence or a convenient parking lot, is not the best idea for security reasons. 

Hyatt Guns can relieve a lot of the stress and provide peace of mind in these circumstances by providing knowledgeable assistance backed by decades of experience.

How do I get my firearms to your shop for appraisal or sale?

The most economical way is to simply load them into your vehicle and drive them to our shop.  If the firearms are in boxes, then place them in the trunk or back of your SUV and bring them to the shop.  If you don’t have boxes then lay a blanket down and place the firearms on it.  If you have more than one layer, just add a blanket and stack on top until that row is complete.  Obviously overnight trips require a bit more security, but driving firearms here is fairly easy and it is legal.  Unload all firearms and if stopped by Law Enforcement, just explain what you are doing.  If transporting the firearms from another state, check with your local authorities to verify local laws and ordinances.    

Can I have my Estate Lawyer or Financial Institution contact you on my behalf?

Yes.  We work with the banks, attorneys and financial institutions on a regular basis.  Many have regulations that do not allow the transportation of firearms and we can coordinate the transport and storage with them. 

We have several Estate Attorneys that use our services and welcome the opportunity to work with more.

Can I bring my friends and relatives?  They want to be involved.

We understand that many people have a vested interest in the disposition of the firearms.  They may want some for themselves or just want to help out.  We have found from experience that the more persons directly involved, the longer the process takes and the results are less accurate.  Generally, space is limited both at the shop and at off-site locations.   In addition, it seems that everyone has questions or suggestions which cause enormous distractions leading to more possibilities of mistake by the appraisers.  We ask that the primary decision maker and one support person be the only persons actually involved with the appraisal.  If others have questions, then after the appraisal is complete and if time allows, we will try to accommodate interested parties.   Obviously, the information received by the owner may be shared with whoever the owner wants to share it with.

How much does a firearm appraisal cost?

It depends on what service is requested.  An insurance appraisal requires a specific write up and is usually priced per firearm.  An appraisal for sale may be requested by pricing individual firearms or the collection may be priced as a whole.  The type of firearm or collection is also a factor.  Antique firearms or rare military firearms which require more research may be at a higher rate than modern production firearms which require less research.  Off-site requests will be determined by the travel distance, number of personnel and vehicles required, and type of service requested.  It is usually best to call and talk to an appraiser to determine the best service for you and a pricing quote.

How long will an appraisal take? Do I need an appointment?

This depends on the type firearm and the number of firearms.  Modern firearms can usually be a fairly quick process, especially if unmodified and in relatively good condition.  Antique, rare, and collectable firearms take longer.  Collections appraised at the shop are a quicker process than off site due to the availability of resources.  Hyatt Guns does not keep firearms after business hours for appraisal (no overnight) due to federal regulations.  Under 10 firearms can be appraised without an appointment, please come in at least an hour before we close.  Anything over 10 firearms might be a wait unless you have called in advance.

How do you determine how much you will pay for my firearm?

When the firearms are appraised for sale, two figures are given to the customer.  One figure is the used retail value.  This is what you would expect to pay for the firearm if you purchased it from a brick-and-mortar retail store.  The other figure is the wholesale value.  This is what a Federally Licensed Dealer would pay for the firearm for resale and after all the expenses incurred, sell for a fair profit.  If the seller is selling to friends, relatives, or a personal sale, this would be the minimum offer that should be accepted.

Everyone is understandably concerned that they are getting a fair price for their firearm(s) and this formula, coupled with the reputation of the dealer, helps the seller to rest easier about the transaction and make pricing firearms for family and friends much easier.

Why should I sell to Hyatt Guns?

1.Convenience – Hyatt Gun Store will purchase the entire collection. We never “cherry pick” and will make a bulk offer for the entirety of the collection. This means that as a seller you don’t end up trying to sell the less desirable firearms after the more desirable are gone, but you are able to sell everything at once.     
2. Peace of Mind – Hyatt Gun Store is the oldest, most trusted name in Charlotte when it comes to firearms and collections.   All required paperwork is completed by our staff which transfers the responsibility from you to Hyatt Guns.  Records are kept by Hyatt Guns to relieve you of liability from the moment we take possession of the firearms.

3. Ease of sale – Hyatt Gun Store has over 60 years’ worth of experience working with customers and individuals. Being in the business that long we have come up with an easy-to-follow process while also taking care of all legal necessary paperwork.  From the time you arrive at the shop, we take care of everything.  We will unload your vehicle (and load the firearms back up if you decide to keep them), complete the appraisal, make an offer for trade or a cash sale, complete all paperwork including placing all firearms in our name. We will give you a bill of sale and payment for the firearms.  All in one easy stop.

What happens if my gun comes back stolen?

Hyatt Guns has the serial numbers on all purchased firearms checked to see if it has been reported stolen.  The reporting Law Enforcement Agency is notified if such a report is found.  What happens after that is determined by the investigating agency.  As the firearm is usually seized by Law Enforcement, Hyatt Guns will expect a return of our payment as soon as possible.

I was willed a firearm by my granddad.  What paperwork do I need to transfer it to me?

If in the state of North Carolina, the executor of the estate has control over the firearm.  When the determination has been made that the firearm may be gifted or sold, a transfer should be completed by a Federally Licensed Dealer.  If both the firearm estate and the receiver of the firearm are located/reside in North Carolina, then the transfer may be completed with the presentation of a Carry Concealed Handgun permit or a Handgun Purchase permit.   If the firearm is a rifle or shotgun, a background check will be performed by the dealer prior to the transfer being completed. If the receiver of the firearm resides out of state, the firearm should be brought to a North Carolina dealer, then shipped to a Federally Licensed Dealer in the state where the receiver resides.  The dealer in that state will then transfer the firearm complying with the laws of that state.

I don’t want to keep the guns in my house while I wait for all the estate paperwork.  What can I do to get them out?

Hyatt Guns has a storage program for these situations.  Whether you need storage for a month or for a longer period of time, we can provide secure storage for the firearms.

Are you a Class 3 / NFA dealer?

Yes.  We are a Class 3 dealer.  These are highly regulated items and will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.  Please have all related paperwork with you when you come by the store.

Can I get a used firearm appraisal or quote over the phone?

We generally will not do this over the phone or by email.  There are many factors involving condition, and in the case of collectables, markings on the firearms which greatly affect the value.  The appraiser needs to see the firearms in person in order to complete an accurate and fair appraisal.

What other things does Hyatt’s appraise?

Hyatt Guns can appraise swords, military items, knives, precious metals, collectables and coins.  We also purchase many of these items so stop by and bring them with you.