Being a student means that you have to live on a tight budget, unless your parents are extremely rich. Many students have to work part-time jobs to cover their living expenses. College students do not only have tuition costs to cover, but living costs, transportation costs, and book expenses as well. Buying college textbooks could be a burden for many students with a tight budget. In fact, you do not need to have to buy textbooks to be a good student, you have many options available.
Many students choose to buy used textbooks as a means to lower their costs. However, there is even another better way to save money on your textbooks: rent them. Renting textbooks have become increasingly popular over the years. Now, students could rent textbooks in a store or even online.
With the development of smartphones and eBook readers, many students have chosen to store their college books on their mobile devices instead of having to carry several pounds worth of books on their back.
Books that are only needed for one semester are ideal for renting, since you only need them for a set amount of time, and you won't need to keep them for reference later on. If you know exactly how long you will need the book, you could save yourself a lot of money. Amazon has an amazing book renting service for people who just need the book for a short period of time.
If you, however, prefer to rent a physical book instead, you have to make sure you are good at keeping the book in its best condition. If the appearance of the book gets worse during the course of the rental term, you may be required to pay additional fees or even buy the entire book. You should not write or make bookmarks on any pages of a rented book unless you want to pay extra fees.
Many students simply prefer buying textbooks at the beginning of the school year and then sell them back at end of the year. In fact, they could make great savings doing it this way also. Choosing whether to buy or rent textbooks really depends on the person's preference. If you are considering textbook rental, remember the following advantages:
Online Rental Saves Time and Money
Today, you could easily rent a book online and wait for the rental company to deliver the book to your doorstep. It is extremely convenient and time-saving.When you need to return the book, you can even rely on the collection service of some college book rental services as well. They will send someone to collect the book from you, so you don't even need to go to a post office to return your book.
Online Shopping Comparison
When you shop for textbooks offline, you usually don't have the time and effort to go through store to store to make comparison. Shopping online is a whole different thing. With just a few clicks, you could compare prices from different book rental services and make your wisest choice. You can buy college textbooks online through a variety of websites and at the same time be able to compare prices. How nice is that!? Have you ever rented a college textbook?
I recommend using a textbook price comparison tool to quickly see who carries the book, the format and price.
That’s a great idea! Always best to compare prices when shopping.
I rent textbooks all the time. They save me a ton from buying them. And lets face it, renting can be so easy in the long run.
I totally agree. It’s a great option!
I only graduated a couple years ago, but literally the last semester in school was when I first heard of renting books. But it wasn’t easily done and more work than it was worth. Now there are locations everywhere to do so, internet sites, and even digital versions! I wish it came out sooner! I still have dozens of textbooks I was never able to sell back because they were ‘retired’ after my class!
I wish it had come out sooner too. I haven’t been in school for a while though. They did have some ebooks when I went though but I always liked having a hard copy.
Just One Boomer (Suzanne)
Renting textbooks wasn’t an option when I was in college—and law school. In fact, there wasn’t even much of a secondary market for old textbooks. When I was in college (which is getting to be a seriously long time ago), I used to pretty much use all my summer job earnings to pay for my books. I was a double major in history and Spanish. This meant I didn’t have too many big hard-back text books, but I had to by 8 or 9 paperback books for each course. Many of these were worth keeping for a while—until our third move when my husband refused to lug them around anymore.
I’m mostly a travel blogger. My e-reader has seriously saved my back on our travels.
Oh yes, e-readers are a life saver for book lovers. My back used to kill me in school because of all the books.
We couldn’t rent; had the same model you did – buy used for 2/3 of cover price and sell back for 1/3. Renting sounds cheaper, but similar.
It does sound similar except you don’t get money back at the end you get a cheaper price in the beginning. I kind of liked getting money back for the books.
I had no idea that you could rent textbooks! What fantastic information for perspective students to have so that they can ease some of the financial strain that purchasing textbooks can cause. 🙂
Yes, it’s a great and least expensive option. Yay!
This was a very useful post! Glad to know I have many options this fall.
Yes as the years pass more and more options seem to come available to students which is nice.
I love this idea. I wish it had been possible when I was in school, but as the mother of two teenagers, I’m pleased to know the option exits. Thanks for sharing.
Yes, def good to know these days 🙂
I agree that renting textbooks is a great way to save money in college. Plus it’s nice because you know you are not going to get stuck with the book if they don’t buy it back. This is even nicer when you are a writing or English major and have to buy novels each semester although I like to keep mine. The only thing I will warn against is renting books if you are not a very responsible person or accident prone. Ruining the book, having to pay for it it is about the only con to renting books. It is definitely not something I had thought about though until my boyfriend left his history textbook in his jeep with the top off and it rained. Oops! I needed the same book the following semester and ended up just buying it off of Amazon.
Uh oh. Sorry about that book! I have never ruined a book where they wouldn’t take it back. I do still have some of the books they wouldn’t buy back. They help fill in my book case 🙂
Renting textbooks for college is a no-brainer. It is SO much cheaper than buying books for hundreds of dollars that are only then bought back for a small fraction of what you paid because theres a new edition coming out almost every year. Chegg.com is the website I used.
I haven’t heard of chegg.com but good to know. I know ecampus rents books too.
I don’t think renting was an option when I was taking classes, or maybe I just wasn’t aware that it was. I kept many of the books related to my major and viewed them as a worthwhile investment. However, I do wish eReaders would have been more popular back then. Once, when it came to a VERY expensive book, myself and three others chipped in and ended up sharing the book.
Chipping in for a book is a great idea! I wish I would have thought of that.
Boy I so wish they had had this when I was in college. It would have made life a whole lot easier. Books were always (still are) so expensive. Used books worked ok but sometimes they were so marked up that it made it a bit problematic to use. 🙂
I know, textbooks are crazy expensive. Nearly $200 for one book is just insane.
I have never heard of renting text books. Mind you, e readers weren’t a big thing when I was finishing up my business degree about 4 years ago.
I hadn’t either till a few years ago. We have a local company that rents textbooks all over the US. It’s called ecampus. I worked for them at one point but that was after I had already graduated and didn’t need textbooks anymore.
This is awesome! I wish this was around when I was in college. I spent so much money on used books. The worst was when there was no used option because they “updated” the textbook series. Then I was forced to buy new and I never made money selling the books back. So happy this is around now for students!
I used to hate when I hate to buy new too. Books can be crazy expensive.