Updated 1:47 PM PST, Thur June 5, 2014
Rising college tuition is just one of the many costs of furthering your education. In addition to housing, food, entertainment there’s the giant cost of supplies. Because each professor can select as many books to be required, you can wind up spending up to $2,000 just in books.
There are, of course, benefits to buying your books. You can keep them as long as you want, use them after your class, have them if they are required for another course and eventually, sell them for some sort of return on your investment.
Having your own books means you can make notes in them, you aren’t responsible for damages but it’s likely that the $350 textbook you bought will only be worth $40 when you try to sell it back, forcing most students to look into alternatives.
Renting textbooks is becoming extremely popular, with university bookstores starting their own rental programs. Even large online retailers, such as Amazon, and even the publishers themselves are starting to allow for downloadable rentals, saving on shipping, printing and minimizing the amount of damages that can be made. This alternative nullifies the entire need for purchasing the book.
Here are a few more tips to help you save when it comes to textbooks:
- Try websites like half.com if you must buy a book. They sell used textbooks that are searchable by IBSN number (the ISBN will ensure that you have the right edition).
- Check your school’s bookstore. They often do usedbook sales and sponsor book rentals as well.
- Cover your books! Protecting your books from scratches, bent corners and spills is one way to ensure that you’re not charged for any damages.