It’s not your imagination, the cost of getting a degree from a traditional college or online college is really out of control. And with every year the costs increase.
Average tuition fees for full-time students rose 3.1% over the past school year, according to the College Board’s annual report.
However, it does not mean that you have to give up your dream of graduating from college. Regardless of your current financial situation, there are things you can do to save money on tuition and other expenses. It just takes a little creativity and some budgeting apps tailored for college students to achieve this.
The cost of textbooks is often overlooked when it comes to saving money for college, but it’s an expense that can really add up. Today, according to the Huffington Post, it’s not uncommon for many to spend more than $ 1,000 a year on textbooks. That’s a pretty big part of the change.
Here are a few simple ways you can drastically reduce the cost of textbooks:
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1. Avoid the school bookstore
The school bookstore is not your friend when you want to save on textbooks.
There are campus bookstores to make a profit for the school. They are not for your convenience or to do you a favor. It’s all about the money. Surprised? You shouldn’t be.
School bookstores always charge the highest price for textbooks. And if you sell your used textbooks back to them at the end of the semester, they give you very little money. It’s bad business no matter how you look at it.
If not your school bookstore, what then? How do you get books for your class? Continue reading…
2. Buy your used books online
Thanks to the internet, school bookstores are no longer the only way to get textbooks. You can now buy them online from many different websites. This will allow you to compare prices and choose the option that gives you the best deal.
When you shop online, you also have the flexibility to buy used books instead of new ones. If your school bookstore is out of used books for a particular course, you may have no choice but to purchase an expensive new book. You can save a lot by buying all of your used books.
Used college textbooks are very easy to find online. A simple Internet search for “used textbooks for universities” offers many possibilities. When shopping online, make sure you get information about each book, including the title, author (s), edition, ISBN number, and other relevant information. You will most likely need to contact your class teacher for the information.
Pro tip: Consider buying used books online from sites like Chegg and Amazon.
3. Consider renting instead of buying
Why buy when you can rent? This is especially true if you only need to keep your books for one semester at a time. Renting textbooks is a great way to save money, and it also solves the problem of how to get rid of your books when your class is over. You just give them back to the landlord.
There are a number of online book rental companies to choose from so you can find the best deal. Just do an internet search for “textbook rental” to find some great options. Like Textbooks.com and CampusBooks.com, you can borrow your books instead of buying them.
4. Buying or renting e-textbooks
Another way to save money on college textbooks is to buy or rent the e-book versions instead of the dead-tree versions. E-readers such as the Kindle are widely used and several companies make these convenient devices. Instead of lugging around a few heavy books, all you need is a small electronic device.
How Much Can You Save With E-Textbooks? It depends on whether you can save up to 80 percent on some books, and the savings on others may be minimal. That depends a lot on the publisher.
With e-textbooks, you need to assess the potential savings on a case-by-case basis. If you already own an e-reader this is a good place to check. You can visit websites like Barnes & Noble to read e-textbooks.
4. Buy an older edition
Every few years schoolbook publishers come out with new editions. Always. And publishers strongly encourage professors to take on the latest and greatest editions – which they normally do.
Why do publishers do this? It’s about the Benjamin, the Moolah. It’s about making more money. Think about it – does a history book really need a new edition every few years? Or how about an algebra book? Are the subjects really changing so much to warrant new editions? Barely.
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When a publisher brings out a new edition of a textbook, they usually only make a few changes to the book here and there – just enough to qualify as a new edition. All of the content is largely the same as in the previous edition – including all of the homework.
Whenever a new edition of a textbook comes out, the cost of the previous edition falls like a rock. You may even be able to get the previous edition of a textbook for just pennies on the dollar of the new edition.
If you decide to buy a slightly older edition of a textbook, anytime you want to check that you have the right assignment questions to work on, visit your school library. Most school libraries keep updated editions of all textbooks the school uses. Usually, you can’t check them out, but you can still stop by the library after class to check that you have the right assignments to work on.
5. Buy an international edition
What is different about an international edition? Usually not much. The cover may be different or the chapters may be in a different order. That’s all.
International editions are usually much, much cheaper than the regular editions. You can use this to get a lot. And just like buying an older copy, you can always check your school library to review content and assignments.
6. Share books with friends
Do you have friends who are taking the same classes as you? Then why not share books? You can use a book long enough between classes to read a chapter and complete assignments, and then give it to your friend when you’re done.
7. Sell your textbooks online at the end of the semester
What do you do with your textbooks at the end of the semester? You sell to the school bookstore? Yes exactly. You won’t get a lot of money doing this.
The best way to get rid of your textbooks at the end of the semester is to sell them online. The best (and easiest) way to do this is to list them on Amazon.com. Amazon makes it very easy for anyone to sell used books. Just do a quick search for your book, check the current prices and the price of your sale.
Having your textbooks on sale as soon as your class ends, you may be able to move them very quickly as this is the time to look for used books for the upcoming semester.
Simple savings on textbook strategies – big savings
Who says you have to spend a lot of money on school books? You won’t if you implement one of these simple strategies to save textbooks and financially survive college.
Here’s a great tip I last saved: if you buy your textbooks used online and resell them online at the end of the semester, you can get most of your money back. With this strategy, you can essentially get textbooks for next to nothing.
How about that
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