Students save money by renting textbooks
University of Louisville students saved more than $90,000 on textbooks in fall 2010 by renting their books from the UofL bookstore rather than buying them.
The bookstore and Barnes & Noble College Booksellers piloted the program last spring and offered rental for the summer and fall terms.
"Feedback has been very positive from students," said Scott Schuknecht UofL bookstore manager.
Online orders for spring already show "a lot of students selecting rental as an option," he said on Jan. 4, noting that the number could increase as "A lot of the rentals that are going to happen will take place when students return to campus."
Student interest is only one component needed for the program's success.
"The success of the program is dependent on faculty placing their book orders early so that additional books can be added to the program," said Sally Molsberger, chair of the Bookstore Advisory Committee.
"If faculty commit to the same book for two academic years, the availability of the rental books would greatly increase," she said.
Along with delivering savings of more than 50 percent over the cost of purchasing a new, printed textbook, the Uof L rental program offers students such pluses as:
- The convenience of renting books either in the campus bookstore or through the bookstore's website, eliminating the need to pay shipping costs or wait for books to arrive in the mail
- The choice to return rental textbooks to the campus bookstore or via mail using free return shipping
- The flexibility to use a wide variety of rental fee payment options, including financial aid, campus debit cards, cash and credit cards
- The ability to highlight text and take notes in the rented books
- The freedom to keep books for up to 10 days after the last day of final exams
- The reassurance of getting automated, reminder e-mail notification that the rental period is ending and to return the books to the bookstore
Students who fail to return their books to the bookstore or whose books are returned in unusable condition are subject to replacement and processing fees.
The UofL bookstore has two locations: first floor of the Student Activities Center on Belknap Campus and in the K Building on Floyd Street at the Health Sciences Center.