Saving money in college – Renting vs. Buying Text books

college books

Some image rights reserved by Robert S. Donovan

College can be expensive. it doesn’t matter if you are attending an online college or go to a traditional college, it still costs money. One thing, besides tuition, that makes getting an education so expensive is buying text books. Just about every class that you take in college will require some sort of reading material whether it’s a text book, reading book, or journal articles, and no matter what kind it is, it will cost some money. However, you do have options when it comes to getting your books. You have the option to either rent your books, or buy your books, but which one is the best option?

Let’s start with buying your books. Just about any college has a campus book store or a local book store that carries text books for that college. These stores normally give you the option to buy new or used books, depending on the class and what book they used last year. Buying used books can save you some money, but you might have to deal with someone else’s highlighting or notes written in the book. Yes, people can do that and still sell the book back. A new book will of course be new, shiny, free of any notes or markings and will probably cost a little extra. For most schools, you should be able to buy used books for most of your classes unless they adopted a new book rule. Some instructors will either have one of their own books published or have a book with one of their journals in it. In this case, those instructors will probably make that one of the required books since they would also make some money off of it.

The great thing about buying your books, new or used, is that at the end of the semester, you can sell your books back, hopefully. I say hopefully because selling your books can actually do more damage than help. You will probably run into the book store telling you that they have adopted a new edition of that book and won’t buy back the old ones. They may also tell you that even though they will be using the same edition, they have already bought back all the copies that will be needed and won’t buy yours back. You do always have the option to sell your books online; surely someone will want or need your textbook.

Renting your books can help get rid of the sell back situation. Campus Book Rentals allows you to rent your books for a set period of time, normally for the semester. The book that you rent may come used, and like when buying, your used book will probably have highlights and notes all through it. However, no matter if it is a new or used book that you rent, Campus Book Rentals will allow you to write and highlight in the book as well. So, if you thought that you could only do that in a book you bought, think again.

When it comes to saving money while in college, it may seem difficult to do, but there are ways to do so. Now, whether or not renting will save you money over buying your books and selling them back may just depend. Just remember that when you buy your books, you may not be able to sell them back, but when you rent, at the end of the semester, you just ship them back and it’s a done deal.

Willow Stevens

Willow is a mother of six who begins to feel the empty nest, with faer oldest child living with his long-time girlfriend in another state, and the next three begin their talks about jobs and the excitement of college and living alone. Willow started couponing in 2007 to save their family some money on the grocery budget. That's how Freetail Therapy was born, so that fae could share their knowledge of saving money with others. Though the site has become so much more since then, and now includes homeschooling and homesteading info, Willow still does it all on a budget and shares how. Willow enjoys snagging freebies, snuggling with their dog, Xander, drinking decaf coffee, gardening, cannabis and of course, their large frugal family.

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