Buying brand new textbooks every semester is a familiar experience for most college students. Almost every class requires students to buy at least one textbook, and sometimes multiple new textbooks for multiple classes. New textbooks have also long been a point of frustration for students because they can be very expensive. Many books cost more than $100, which, on a student budget, is a pricey book indeed. Throughout the years, various entrepreneurs (as well as students themselves) have tried a number of different ideas to help alleviate some of this pricing pain, but no single idea has caught hold. Students have setup their own exchange programs, and a few boutique bookstores have offered to purchase books from students, but for decades, the best option for students has been simply selling the textbooks back to the college bookstore where they bought them. Selling your textbooks back to the bookstore is better than giving them away, but students are genuinely surprised to learn that most bookstores pay a fraction of the original purchase price, which can be a frustrating experience. Especially if the book is still in great condition. Students wonder how a book can depreciate by over 70% in only 3-4 months, and why there isn’t a better option for selling their textbooks at the semester’s end.
In recent years, a new idea has sprung up whose time has come. Rather than buying textbooks, a few companies have begun offering textbooks for rent. It’s a very compelling offer for students because they can save a tremendous amount of money on their books. And renting is usually much more efficient for students because most students have little use for textbooks after the semester is over. By purchasing and owning a textbook, students not only spend more money, but they’re also saddled with the additional responsibility of getting rid of the textbooks at the semester’s end. If a student can simply rent their textbooks, they end up saving as much as 80% on their books for the semester (which can quickly add up to a few hundred dollars), and as an added benefit, they don’t end up owning the books, and therefore don’t have to worry about taking the time to sell them after finals are over. They can simply send them back to the company they rented them from when finished. All things considered, it’s much more efficient for students because it saves them money and removes the responsibility of figuring out what to do with their books when they no longer need them.
Renting textbooks is also a great option for parents paying for their child’s college education. As any parent can tell you, tuition costs are higher than they’ve ever been. Putting a child through college is a very expensive endeavor, and saving hundreds of dollars on their textbooks every semester is a very simple way to bring down some of the cost associated with their child’s education.