What to Look for When Buying Your Textbooks

Textbook can be a key to gain knowledge and experience for your dream job. It can also be a source of nightmare for your pocketbooks if you are on a tight budget. There is a lot you can do between now and purchasing your next textbook to better position yourself financially. Below are some tips to have a control on what to buy, where to buy and how much you pay for your textbooks.

1. Internet Search Engines

When it comes to textbooks, it is always best start your search on the internet, because this is the place where you will find a wide range of choices. There are many comparison websites that create a list of various sellers and corresponding prices including shipping for the textbook you are trying to purchase. You can also find multiple options to save money and time on shipping and handling, such as free shipping, expedite and overnight. Some sellers clearly state the details and conditions of the textbook. Others are vague about descriptions. What to buy – the choice is yours. Just make sure that you are buying according to your need and budget.

2. Used Textbook Resellers

There are many retailers who are into selling used textbooks for a very price that will certainly not break your bank. You can find great deals here, and books that are in good or reasonable shape. Certain online websites deliver used books to your door for free with minimum purchase. One such website is Half.com where you can place a bid or buy it on spot.

3. Renting For Short Or Long Term

Another option to save money is to rent just like other things. The good part – you will be paying only a fraction of the original price of that textbook. The not so good part – You will have to return the book after a specified period, so reselling it or keeping it beyond that period is out of question.

4. E-books

If you are not the old-fashioned reader type or don’t want to recoup some of the cost, then e-book is your best bet. Many websites offer e-book option for the textbook you want to buy. Simply sign up with an upfront cost and you will be given access to each and every page of that textbook until the expiration date. The date of expiry is normally a year or two. Again, this can save you a lot of money as well.

5. Your Local Library

When it comes to textbooks, you will never know how useful your public library can be. If you are lucky, this is a place where you will find many versions and copies of the same textbook. Even if the library doesn’t carry the textbook you are looking for, there are other options as well. For example, many times, the libraries around counties connect with one another and make sure that your ordered textbook is delivered to your place of request. Other times, you can always request the librarian to place a special order citing the reason that the textbook is in great demand. The best part is, you don’t have to spend a dime. You can always checkout the textbook multiple times if needed. This is the best available option when you need that textbook only for a semester or two.

6. School That You Are Attending

There is no better way to get a textbook than to utilize the features offered by the school that you are attending. Sometimes for free and other times for a fee, you can always find textbooks at your school, either new or handed down by other students. Schools also offer many options to reduce the cost of the textbook, such as rentals, used books, eBooks and so on. So why not check what options are available to you at the front desk?

7. Sharing Textbooks

Considering the exorbitant cost of tuition and soaring textbook prices, this option makes sense in all levels. Sharing textbook cost with another student or a group can save you a lot of money when you are on a budget. Besides, this is the quickest and easiest way to cut your college cost apart from scholarships.

8. Checkout Course Smart Like Sites

Certain publishers have come together to offer the best they can by partnering with websites like CourseSmart. Here, you will find best deals for many textbooks across various subject areas. You are also more likely to find the original version of the book. You will find the best price for each of these textbooks from various independent sellers as well. These websites have been adding new titles and books to their inventory on a regular basis. Again, they are available in many forms – hardcover, paperback, eBooks and much else for the price of your choice.

That being said, there are certain things that you need to look for when buying your textbooks from the above sources. First, ensure that the textbook has the same title, author and ISBN as indicated. Second, make sure that you are getting the best deal for the condition the book is in. This way, when you are done reading and no longer need it, you can easily resell it online or at a retail bookstore for the best price. Last but not least, choose the best shipping option that suits your requirement and budget.