You can likely rent these books and thousands more at your local college bookstore or online. (Photo by wohnai)

There are a number of advantages to renting the textbooks that you need for your college courses. First and foremost, renting is becoming more prevalent, and textbook rentals are much more accessible than ever before. Saving money is perhaps the most appealing reason to rent. Finally, renting allows you to get the books off your hands when you are done with them so that you can make room for your next stock of books.

There are basically two different ways to rent a textbook. You can rent books at an actual campus bookstore or at many off-campus bookstores that deal with textbooks. Many books can be directly rented from the inventory at a store, or the store may also deal with an online textbook rental service if certain books are not in stock at the store. Students will pay for the rental upfront, use the book for the semester, and then return it to the store before a specified deadline. The other option is to rent books online. Websites like and offer thousands of textbooks for rent. You can check their prices all in one search here at The company will mail you the textbook, you will keep it for as long as you need it, and then you will send it back to the company. In some cases, shipping is free, and these companies will typically cover the shipping costs when it comes time to return the book.

According to The Student PIRGs website, college students who use the current rental services in existence only pay between $130 and $240 each year for their textbooks, in addition to a few extra supplemental course materials. College students who do not rent their textbooks spend an average of between $800 and $900 on their course books and materials each year. This means by renting textbooks, students can save close to 80% on their textbooks. This huge savings in cost makes it incredibly appealing for students to rent rather than buy their books.

Another advantage of renting textbooks is that you have a reason to get rid of them when the semester is over. In most cases, bookstores have a certain deadline that you must meet on when to return your rentals. Not only does this force you to return the books, but it also means you don’t have to worry about finding space to store the books or taking the time to sell them back to either a bookstore or to another student. In essence, renting is an extremely convenient way of getting your books and then making room for new ones in your closet or dorm room.