Ways to spend the least amount of money on books

Last updated: 12/04/13 7:11pm


Expensive textbooks are a college student’s worst enemy, but if you’re a smart textbook shopper, you will stretch your dollar until it pops. With the winter 2014 semester approaching, it’s a must for college students to spend the least amount of money on textbooks.

When buying textbooks you have three options: buy new, buy used or rent. Renting textbooks tends to be the cheapest. When renting a textbook you can still highlight and write in the textbook just like if you bought it, and buying used is another inexpensive option. Most of the time, buying new is the priciest option students try to avoid at all costs, literally.

The key to spending the least amount of money is to shop around. The best time to start is at least three weeks before the semester starts. This way you can choose the standard shipping option which maybe free depending on the place. Searching a few weeks before the semester starts also allows time to find the best price and the place to search around is online.

On the my.emich.edu site there is an option to look up textbooks by class, which will have the International Standard Book Number (ISBN), a necessity in order to ensure the right textbook is purchased. Using the ISBNs, search the textbooks on sites like Chegg, Neebo, Half, Amazon and Campus Book Rentals.

Search each textbook on all of the sites so you can compare which site offers the lower price. Besides CampusBookRentals.com, which is exclusively for renting textbooks only, the sites shows prices for buying used or new and renting textbooks. Shipping is free when returning rental textbooks at the end of the semester.

In the meantime, its time to get rid of this semester’s textbooks. Locally, Ned’s Bookstore and EMU Bookstore buys back textbooks online and in store. From Dec. 16-18, the EMU Bookstore will be buying back textbooks as well as checking in rentals at the Eateries from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Rentals are due by Dec. 21.

Additional sites such as BuyBackTextbooks.com and BookScouter.com have made selling textbooks very easy. The only thing you have to do is input the textbook’s ISBN and the sites will search for all the buyback quotes from around the Internet.

On ECampus.com, there’s an option to take site credit and get 20 percent more than the cash option, students can then use the site credit to buy more textbooks for the next semester.

Keep the textbooks in the best condition possible. Limit the amount of writing and highlighting by coping pages and using sticky notes. The better the condition, the more money can be received.

Published Dec 4, 2013 in Life

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