On top of rising tuition costs, fees, accommodation and food—paying $200 for a book feels like the nail in the coffin of your student budget. Even if it’s not much, selling your textbooks back can be a good way to score a little extra cash.
College News has a few tips on how to make sure you’re getting the most money out of your used textbooks.
Generally speaking, your university bookstore is the worst place to sell your textbooks. Owing to quotas, revenue and incentives from publishers and professors, you’re likely to get the least amount of money from the campus store, even if you bought your books from there brand new.
When it comes to being thrifty, research is always on your side. Look up online textbook retailers, such as Amazon and Chegg, to see what their rates are—you can even use textbook buyback comparison websites to see where the best deal is.
This one requires planning ahead—when you buy your books, try to keep them in the best condition possible to get the most amount of money back.
It can be tempting to highlight or fold the pages, but this is a don’t if you want to sell your books at the end of the semester.
Use sticky notes and tabs to mark things instead.
Time is of the essence with textbook buybacks. Most of the time, retailers are looking to buy books back the week of finals. And while it’s okay to hold off on selling yours at that moment, the sooner you can get rid of your books the better. Before the semester ends, look around for the best buyback deal and make a plan for when you’re going to mail your books back.
Sell to students
Finally, the best and easiest way to get rid of your textbooks for cash is to sell them to underclassmen at your school. Put up signs in your department’s building or advertise on your university’s social media forums. At the end of the year, most students know what they’ll be taking in the fall, so they’ll be on the lookout for next year’s books, as well as trying to get rid of their old ones.
This article was originally published in the Spring 2019 edition of College News.