If available do you prefer to rent or buy textbooks?

Renting vs Buying college textbooks is an option most college students have to consider. Many students simply pick the cheapest option but there are other considerations.

Renting textbooks

  • Cheaper up front cost
  • No risk of a new version coming out and devaluing a purchased textbook

Buying textbooks

  • Buying used and reselling may be the cheapest method
  • A better choice if the textbook will be used in another or advanced course

Deciding Which is Right for You  

Now that we have listed the options and the pros of each, it’s up to you to decide! Just to recap, many students rent their college textbooks because it’s cheaper up front and they usually don’t use them after the class. The exception is textbooks that I’ll be using for multiple semesters. There’s really no right or wrong when it comes to buying or renting your textbooks, it just depends on you, your financial status, and your style of studying. Once you determine how you study and what you need in order to succeed, your textbook selection process will be a breeze.

What do other student recommend?

Textbook comparison website Cheap-Textbooks.com recently ran a Twitter poll for college students to vote on buying vs renting. The results were really right down the middle with 50% responding that they prefer to rent and 50% that prefer to buy.

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