Textbook rentals online is an area that can save students considerable amounts of money and time. Renting holds many advantages over buying, most notably cheaper prices and the ease of receiving and returning textbooks. However, one still must consider not only the benefits of renting, but also the potential drawbacks. The following will help you form a clear comparison of renting versus buying textbooks online .
1. Consider Initial Cost
From an initial and immediate standpoint, renting textbooks online is usually cheaper than buying textbooks. In some circumstances, this immediate cheapness is apparent and effective. For example, if you only need a book for half of a semester, it is worth it to simply rent for a small fee and return it at the end of the term. There is no need to invest more money into a book that will only be used for a month or two.
In some cases where textbooks must be used for an entire school year or more, it still pays to rent. Many large textbooks (e.g. science textbooks) cost hundreds of dollars; renting one of those for a year as opposed to flat-out buying it will save you money in the long run.
2. Evaluate Future Needs
One inherent problem with renting textbooks is that if you ever need the book again in the future, you'll have to re-rent/purchase the book. Some material learned in the classroom sticks in a person's mind forever, while other material may require consistent reviews to stay fresh. The need to have a textbook in the future will vary from person to person, class to class and profession to profession. Wise students must consider their specific situation and determine if saving money with renting really makes sense (and cents!) for the future
3. Is Extra Hassle Worth The Money?
Sometimes, the difference in price between renting and buying can be negligible if one takes the time to sell his or her books once they are no longer of use. Additionally, bargain hunters look for the lowest prices to close the cost gap even more. However, bargain hunting, listing and completing used textbook sales takes a good amount of time and effort. Not everybody has the time and energy to obtain the best prices for both buying and selling. So students must weigh hassles versus money in their own eyes.
If you are the type of person who wants to pay a cheap price for a textbook and have everything laid out for you (such as prepaid rental shipping labels, etc.), then consider renting. If you have some extra time on your hands and/or don't mind searching for bargains and making sales, the buy/sell method may work best for you.
Initial cost, future needs and worthiness of extra hassle must each be considered when deciding whether to rent or buy your textbooks for next semester. Textbook rentals online surely has many advantages, but in some cases it may be more future-proof to buy. Know your situation and you'll make the best choices. Consider Amazon for buying and selling or Chegg for renting.