If you live in an apartment in Blacksburg, VA and are looking for ways to cut college costs, try renting your textbooks this semester.
Numerous companies, including Barnes & Noble, Amazon.com and Chegg, offer this service.
Renting textbooks typically will save you 60% to 70% per book. You’ll also save time: You won’t have to wait in line to buy books or, at the end of the semester, sell them for pennies on the dollar. Textbook rentals last through the semester, although you can usually extend the rental or buy the book.
There are a few considerations: You generally have to pay for shipping, you have to ship back the books by a designated time, and you can’t write in the book margins or highlight significant passages.
Some services also allow you to purchase or rent e-books. This way, you can search, highlight and take notes. Chegg, for example, offers e-books through its eTextbook Reader, which is available for PC, Mac and smartphones.
A recent check showed that a popular biology textbook, the ninth edition of “Campbell Biology,” can be rented for $55.49 at Chegg. You can also rent the textbook as an e-book for $92.68.
At Amazon.com, the same textbook sells for $164.49 and rents for $68.25.