Buy Textbooks At The Cheapest Price

4 Aug

WHEN is that, you ask? Well, it’s complicated.

I used Cheapbooks.com to track prices for Fundamentals of Phonetics by Larry H. Small over a year.  Here’s the link:

http://cheapbooks.com/search_director.cgi?catalog=162&query=9780132582100+&submit=Search

 

I found that the best RENTAL prices are in June (under $16).  Which may or not be helpful since a rental time-line is involved.  But that makes renting cool too, because you could have the book for 3 months, 6 months, or a semester–whatever is most useful for YOU.  But, that cheap summer rental period may not extend through your entire semester.  But for summer sessions, maybe the quarter system (I’m largely unfamiliar with it), and if you don’t mind returning books before finals, that might work out.  July is next cheapest with prices of $23-$24.  So rent, pretty much right before fall semester starts to get the best deal.  Renting is not such a sure bet for winter/spring semester.  The prices climb (to a high of $104 in December and January), and from January through April, my particular book wasn’t available for rental at ALL.  But I really think renting, in the fall apparently, is the best investment.  As long as you remember to return the books–to the proper company.  Do NOT do what I did and forget altogether OR what I did in a different semester, turn it in to the wrong company!  What ended up helping me was to use the rental receipt with dates, company, and numbers as my bookmark for the duration of the time I used the book.

I did not bother around with NEW textbook prices at all, because my target audience here is not the spoiled princesses of the world.  Let’s be real here, we’re the USED book-buying types, yes?  The difference in quality between used and new books is minimal, so the value for brand new, isn’t very good.  The book companies are pretty picky about what returns they will accept and I’ve rarely received used books with any markings in them.  There might be one or two highlights, but usually after chapter one, writing-IN-books people peter out on the reading.  And on that note, don’t write/highlight IN your books.  RENTAL (especially), USED, or NEW.  You might end up having to purchase the rental, you’ll get a lower price when you try to return a marked-in used book, and writing in a book you plan to keep means when you go back and try to use it–you’ve answered all the questions already.  So read with a computer or notebook, so you can write important things down OUTSIDE of the book.

USED prices were lowest September through November ($23.16) and then very briefly June 9th ($22.70) with large differences between the best and 2nd best prices.  Prices were highest in December ($93.49) when everyone had sold their books back and companies were flush with stock.

The moral?  IF you can stand to wait until after the semester has started (and take the chance your particular book won’t be sold out everywhere) that’s when prices were lowest for my book.  And if you can buy ahead for winter/sping–that’s best, because prices never really fell back to their June-November rates.

Here are the numbers:

9780132582100
for phonetics

https://www.bookrenter.com/return/new
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7/1 = rent for $17; used for $71
7/8: rent $17; used $81.98
7/13 = rent $24
7/28 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/11 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/17 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/18 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/19 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/20 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
8/26 = rent: $22.98; used: $63.28
9/2 = rent: $22.98; used: $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
9/3 = rent: $22.98; used: $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
9/5 = rent: $22.98; used: $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
9/10 = rent: $22.98; used: $23.15, $24.20
9/14 = rent: $22.98; used: $23.16, $24.20
9/24 = rent: $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
10/4 = rent: $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
10/18 = rent: $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
11/8 = rent $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
11/11 = rent $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
11/15 = rent $22.98; used $23.16, $24.20 (2nd)
–>DRAMATIC PRICE CHANGE<–
11/19 = rent $101.83; used $81.38, $83.98 (2nd)
11/22 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $83.98 (2nd)
11/25 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $83.98 (2nd)
11/27 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
11/29 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
12/1 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $90.00 (2nd)
12/3 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
12/5 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
12/7 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
12/11 = rent $103.83; used $81.38, $93.49 (2nd)
12/15 = rent $60.57; used $93.49, $132.00 (2nd)
12/16 = rent $60.57; used $93.49, $132.00 (2nd)
12/19 = rent $60.57; used $93.49, $132.00 (2nd)
12/20 = rent $60.57; used $93.49, $132.00 (2nd)
12/23 = rent $86.00; used $86, $93.49 (2nd)
12/25 = rent $60.57; used $86, $93.49 (2nd)
12/29 = rent $60.57; used $86.00, $93.49 (2nd)
1/2 = rent $51.14; used $93.49, $97.72 (2nd)
1/5 = rent $51.14; used $93.49, $97.72 (2nd)
1/8 = rent $51.14; used $93.49, $97.72 (2nd)
1/13 = rent $51.26; used $82.53, $108.46 (2nd)
1/15 = rent $51.26; used $82.53, $108.46 (2nd)
1/17 = rent $51.26; used $82.53, $108.46 (2nd)
1/20 = rent $55.07; used $76.71, $80.84 (2nd)
1/22 = rent $55.07; used $76.71, $80.84 (2nd)
1/23 = rent $55.07; used $76.71, $80.84 (2nd)
1/27 = rent none left; used $73.48, $109.78 (2nd)
1/29 = rent none left; used $73.48, $109.78 (2nd)
1/31 = rent N/A; used $73.48, $109.78 (2nd)
2/4 = rent none left; used $81.45, $82.17 (2nd)
2/9 = rent none; used $81.45, $82.17 (2nd)
2/13 = rent none; used $81.45, $82.17 (2nd)
2/17 = rent none; used $72.48,$81.45 (2nd)
2/20 = rent $39.09; used $65.10, $78.49 (2nd)
2/23 = rent none; used $70.27, $95.54 (2nd)
3/2 = rent none; used $45.09, $95.54 (2nd)
3/4 = rent none; used $45.09, $95.54 (2nd)
3/9 = rent none; used $45.09, $95.54 (2nd)
3/16 = rent none; used $55.49, $95.54 (2nd)
3/18 = rent none; used $55.49, $95.54 (2nd)
3/22 = rent none; used $55.49, $95.54 (2nd)
3/26 = rent none; used $39.49, $95.54 (2nd)
3/29 = rent none; used $39.49, $95.54 (2nd)
4/2 = rent none; used $39.49, $95.54 (2nd)
4/5 = rent none; used $55.92, $95.54 (2nd)
4/7 = rent none; used $55.92, $95.54 (2nd)
4/10 = rent none; used $55.92, $95.54 (2nd)
4/12 = rent $30.64; used $52.91, $55.95 (2nd)
4/14 = rent $30.64; used $52.91, $55.95 (2nd)
4/16 = rent $30.64; used $52.91, $55.95 (2nd)
4/18 = rent $32.58; used $52.52, $55.95 (2nd)
4/21 = rent $32.18; used $52.52, $55.95 (2nd)
4/24 = rent $32.18; used $52.52, $55.95 (2nd)
4/25 = rent $32.18; used $52.52, $55.95 (2nd)
4/29 = rent $37.88; used $61.17, $74.25 (2nd)
4/30 = rent $37.88; used $61.17, $74.25 (2nd)
5/2 = rent $37.88; used $47.00, $53.21 (2nd)
5/5 = rent $33.88; used $38.55, $47.00 (2nd)
5/7 = rent $33.88; used $38.55, $47.00 (2nd)
5/9 = rent $33.88; used $38.55, $47.00 (2nd)
5/12 = rent $33.88; used $52.27, $55.40 (2nd)
5/14 = rent $35.61; used $51.86, $57.94 (2nd)
5/16 = rent $35.61; used $54.22, $75.41 (2nd)
5/18 = rent $35.61; used $54.23, $75.41 (2nd)
5/20 = rent $35.61; used $54.23, $75.41 (2nd)
5/23 = rent $35.48; used $73.49, $75.41 (2nd)
5/25 = rent $35.48; used $73.49, $75.41 (2nd)
5/27 = rent $35.48; used $73.49, $75.41 (2nd)
5/30 = rent $35.48; used $73.49, $75.41 (2nd)
6/2 = rent $15.27; used $28.56, $29.20 (2nd)
6/4 = rent $15.27; used $28.56, $29.20 (2nd)
6/5 = rent $15.27; used $28.56, $29.20 (2nd)
6/9 = rent $15.27; used $22.77, $26.31 (2nd)
6/10 = rent $15.27; used $29.45, $33.49 (2nd)
6/15 = rent $22.98; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
6/17 = rent $22.98; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
6/25 = rent $44.61; used $29.78, $33.27 (2nd)
6/29 = rent $44.61; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
7/2 = rent $44.61; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
7/8 = rent $23.74; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
7/13 = rent $23.70; used $38.00, $48.24 (2nd)
7/26/15 = rent $23.74; used $32.39, $65.24 (2nd)
8/3/15 = rent $36.15; used $47.00, $55.19 (2nd)

 

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