Did you know you can also buy books through BookScouter? Learn More

8 Proven Tips to Ace College Move-In Day

College, General By August 12, 2020 No Comments

8 Proven Tips to Ace College Move-In Day

After waiting all summer, your college move-in day is finally arriving! There is a lot of work that goes into moving to a school across the country, across the state, or even across town. Don’t panic, we’ve assembled time-proven recommendations to ensure your dorm move-in goes as smoothly as possible with 8 tips to ace your first day on campus.

1. Be smart

  • Look up floor plans, email RA for rules, and organize at home as much as possible
  • Beat the rush and get there early. You might get first pick on a side of the room and avoid the lines for elevators
  • Dress comfy and be sure you don’t lock yourself out of your room or building

2. Bring this

Ready-made Packing Lists are a great short cut. Here are two we thought covered a lot of essentials:

  • Off to College Checklist 
  • The Ultimate College Packing Checklist
  • Wardrobe–don’t get carried away with too many t-shirts and shoes, but pack enough socks and underwear in case laundry doesn’t get done as frequently as you’d like. Limit yourself to one formal outfit and winter coat–climate-appropriate of course!
  • And don’t forget to look for ways to save money and time such as these great tips

3. Don’t bring this

  • Check your school’s specific guidelines but as a general rule do not bring: appliances like a hotplate, toaster, candles, incense, firearms, window a/c units, or pets
  • See if your dorm provides: trash can, mini-fridge, microwave, mirror, or lockbox
  • And finally, your Dorm’s RA (Resident Assistant) might have access to infrequently used items like a vacuum or iron

4. Space-saving tips

  • Find hidden spaces-under beds (loft or use risers), behind doors, bedside pockets or a mattress caddy
  • Use hooks with command strips for backpacks, towels, laundry bags, etc. and keep less clutter on the ground
  • Add an additional hanging rod underneath your closet rod to double your closet space

5. The Roommate factor

  • You might want to hold off until you talk to your roommate about a fridge, microwave, coffee maker, electric kettle, blackout curtains, and a rug
  • If you have a shared bathroom, talk with your roommate about: hand towels, soap, bath mat, curtain and rod, plunger/scrubber, toilet paper, and cleaning supplies
  • And last not least don’t forget and duplicate your Entertainment setup: TV, streaming device, and game systems

6. Books

  • The earlier you purchase books the better chance you have of getting the best selection of used books
  • Check your professor’s syllabi –do you need those books’ access codes?
  • The best way to compare prices for books is with BookScouter.com. We answer the question, “Should I buy or rent?” and “Should I get physical books or digital books?” Our pricing tools make it easy and can even show you the potential buyback prices to sell your books back at the end of the semester

7. Safety

  • Tell a friend about your plans when you go out
  • Park your car or bike safe locations, under lights, if possible
  • Use Campus Security options for a ride to your car or dorm
  • If you run alone outdoors don’t use headphones or earbuds and vary your route

8. COVID adaptations

  • See if your school requires any of the following items: masks, hand sanitizer, cleaning wipes, disposable gloves, and a thermometer
  • Check for any changes to how meals are served on campus, building access and protocols for things like accessing the workout facilities
  • Be sure to do things to help your mental health–get outdoors, workout, and talk with friends and family
  • Be open to change and willing to adapt during these times

Pros & Cons of eTextbooks

College By July 23, 2020 No Comments

Pros & Cons of eTextbooks

Points to Consider

Students have many considerations to make when selecting textbooks: new or used, rent or buy, and print or digital eBooks. Quite often the decision comes down to a student’s learning style and their understanding of the limitations of each option. In this blog, we are breaking down the pros and cons of eTextbooks, as well as discussing how students learn from each format (Spoiler Alert! You retain more reading the paper version).

Pros of eTextbooks

  • May have cheaper upfront costs (know for sure by checking prices on BookScouter.com)
  • Can buy or rent
  • Can have multiple books on one device
  • Less to carry and store
  • Can’t lose or damage a digital version
  • Most up-to-date version
  • Full-text searches and highlight capabilities
  • May have interactive features like flashcards, videos, and quizzes
  • Purchase instantly with quick downloads
  • Can access without internet after you download
  • Don’t have to bother with returns or reselling; access to rentals just expires automatically

Cons of eTextbooks

  • Can’t resell and get some money back
  • Can’t be read on some mobile devices due to screen size
  • Strict return policies based on number of days, percentage of book viewed, using any access codes, etc. (here is one return policy for example)
  • Limited by battery life for reading device
  • Screen fatigue and eyesight strain
  • Easier to get distracted with additional notifications on a device
  • Limited device downloads
  • May have to download multiple eReader apps for different books
  • Depending on the publisher, may not be able to print or cut and paste from an eBook
  • Page numbers might not match supporting materials

Final Thought: Which format is better for studying?

Finally, there are differences of opinion on which format is better for student learning. Proponents state that eBooks are designed to keep students engaged with highlights and annotations while allowing them to easily share notes with peers or teachers. Furthermore, embedded hyperlinks let students quickly reference additional information. However, research has also shown that students learn better from printed books. When tested, students were able to recall more key points and details from the printed material than when reading from a digital copy. Some of the differences can be attributed to time, with students scrolling at a faster pace through the digital material.

Ultimately, no matter which format you choose, there is a place for both variations in your studies if you understand the pros and cons of eTextbooks.


Buy or Rent Textbooks…or try Digital!

College By July 9, 2020 No Comments

Solving the Textbook Dilemma:
Buy, Rent, or go Digital?

Let’s face it – getting your textbooks for college can get complicated. Should you buy or rent textbooks? Physical or digital books? We’ve done the research to present you with the pros and cons of each solution.

Solving the Textbook Dilemma: Buy, Rent, or go Digital?

Don’t buy new when you can buy used textbooks.

BUY Textbooks


  • You can decide whether to keep it or sell it at the end of the semester
  • No deadline to return it
  • Sell it at the end of the semester and get some spending cash!


  • Pay the higher price upfront (we suggest buying used – it’s always cheaper)
  • If a new edition comes out, you will get a lower price when you sell

RENT Textbooks


  • Lower cost upfront
  • Guaranteed to be able to return it


  • Penalties if you don’t return it on time – could be costly
  • If you decide you want to keep the book, you will need to check with the company about the process



  • No heavy textbook to carry around
  • Access your book anytime you have a device handy
  • Rental price for an eBook is comparable to the rental price for a physical book


  • May or may not be cheaper than the physical textbook options
  • You have to keep track of where your books are, i.e. how to access the different books. Did you download them, do you have to access different sites for different books?
  • In most cases, you cannot resell an eBook

If you’re still on the fence with whether to buy or rent your textbooks, you’ll need to do the math. BookScouter.com makes it simple to check your price options for textbooks. You need to compare the difference between the buy and sell price to the rental price. BookScouter lists the estimated buyback price on the Buy results page, so when you search the ISBN, you can easily see how much we think you’ll be able to sell it for at the end of the semester. You can also easily toggle from Buy to Rent on the same results page as well.

In addition, be sure to check the rental cost for the period of time you want to keep the book. Renting may appear cheaper upfront, but companies will usually display multiple rental periods. Be certain to look at the price to keep it for an entire semester and use that as your comparison price.

Solving the Textbook Dilemma: Buy, Rent, or go Digital?

The question of whether to buy or rent textbooks now has another dimension…the digital option.


Here are a couple of pricing comparisons using current textbooks:

Example 1)

ISBN 9780135056080
Rent $53.26 for a Semester
Buy New $146.78
Buy Used for $110.17
Estimated buyback value $64.94 includes FREE shipping
Recommendation: The cheapest option is to buy it used and sell it back. The total cost to you is $45.23.

 Example 2)   

ISBN 9781305957404
Rent for a Semester $29.14
Buy New $86.18
Buy Used – $84.12
Estimated buyback $34.12 includes FREE shipping
Recommendation: The cheapest option in this case is to rent for $29.14.


And lastly, eBooks introduces a whole new factor to the equation. Going digital has some definite advantages, the biggest of which is not having to carry around that rucksack of books. You can access your books anytime you have a device and Internet access and if you download them you just need the device. Is it cheaper to go digital? Not necessarily. Here’s a comparison:

Example 3)

ISBN 9780134523804
Buy eBook – $49.99
Rent eBook – $29.99
Rent Textbook for a Semester- $25.98
Buy New Textbook – $73.93
Buy Used Textbook- $51.69
Estimated Textbook buyback – $32.55

In this case, buying used and selling back or renting the physical book are both less expensive options than the eBook. However, renting the eBook for the semester comes in close behind. So, if you prefer to access your books on your device, this example comes out close to even on price.

Solving the Textbook Dilemma: Buy, Rent, or go Digital?

Going digital has its advantages.


Get the best price on a textbook buyback by taking care of your book and using the FREE shipping labels all the BookScouter vendors offer. Here are a few more tips to get the most value on your return.

Remember, there are no guarantees on the sell-back price. If a new edition comes out, it will certainly lower your sell-back value, or at times, eliminate it. If you are concerned that this might happen, rental is the better option. When you rent, you are guaranteed to be able to return the book. However, there is a caveat with renting.

Be sure to read the fine print when it comes to rentals! Most rental companies will allow a reasonable amount of highlighting, but they may have fees based on the returned condition. In addition, penalties for not returning your rental on time can be heavy. In most cases, they will charge you an extension fee first, and if you miss the extended deadline, charge you the full price of the book. So we can’t stress enough that you have to return the book on time. Write it in your planner, set reminders on your phone, tell Alexa to remind you…just don’t forget!

And a final note – be aware of Access Codes. If you need an access code, you may get stuck buying a new book. Used books and rentals don’t guarantee that supplemental materials will be included. Wondering if you really need access codes? Here’s some advice.

COMING SOON: Our next blog will take a deeper dive into all things eBooks.


Find Your Next Summer Read

General By June 25, 2020 No Comments

Find Your Next Summer Read

Summer is officially here and though it might look different in 2020, that only emphasizes why you deserve an escape into a great book. Are you ready to dive into an engaging read, but need some direction? Look no further!  We have compiled six ideas to help you find your next summer read. 

Find Your Next Summer Read

The beach is an iconic summer reading spot, but be open to other options this year.

Summertime =  beach read. So maybe you can’t get to the beach this year. Recreate the feeling at home. Lean back on that chaise lounge, sip a cold drink and peruse these books that will take you away from it all:

Sink your teeth into a meatier work. If beach reading fare is not for you perhaps you should elevate your search. There are plenty of award-winning options to select for fiction or nonfiction amongst lists for major book awards some found on these lists: 

Find Your Next Summer Read

No beach? Try a nearby lake or stream to read outdoors.

Get with the times. Perhaps you’ve seen trending topics in the news and want to dig deeper into one that interests you. Topics might include politics, medicine, current events, or history to keep you informed. You can some ideas here:

Cross the Finish Line! Are there any book series you haven’t completed yet? Don’t leave your favorite characters hanging! Or if you’ve finished a series, find another to binge-read through with inspiration from these lists:

Find Your Next Summer Read

Find some shade to stretch out and read.

On the silver screen. Hollywood has long sought inspiration for movies from books. See if any of your favorites are also a book and judge how well the movie portrayed characters, locations and stayed true to the author’s work. Here is a list of the best books turned movies:

Best foot forward. Getting ahead for school or work may not seem fun during your summer, but reading now to prepare yourself for a busy fall semester or to advance yourself at work is never a wrong idea. Doing it ahead of time lets you take your time to ponder the themes and be better prepared for a discussion or test. Tip: take some good annotated notes to refresh yourself on the key points months later. Learn how here:

And as a final recommendation, no matter which book you choose, know that you bought it for the BEST PRICE using the BookScouter.com/buy comparison tool. Simply scan the ISBN with the app or type in the title, author, or keyword to search our large selection of vendors and check out your purchase options. 

No matter the type of book you select, we are confident that when you begin to read it will feel like summer has finally arrived!



Tips for Transitioning to College During COVID-19

College, General By June 11, 2020 No Comments

Tips for Transitioning to College During COVID-19

College will look very different this fall whether that be in person or online. Schools are hopeful to have students on campus but are also making alternate plans, such as a hybrid of online and in-class, an early or late start, and other creative options.
But regardless of how college will look, here are some tips for making transitioning this fall as smooth as possible:

Introduce yourself

Don’t be shy! Introduce yourself to your professors, classmates, and advisors. For school online, try and follow the same advice and find virtual office hours for your professors, peer study groups, and work that campus directory to contact the folks you need. Need extra help introducing yourself? Here are some additional ideas to get you started on our first college transition tip.

Tips for Transitioning to College During COVID-19

Try to find a comfortable place to study consistently and get rid of distractions like your phone.

Set up for Success

No matter where you are this fall, have a dedicated study space to focus on your studies, especially if you are taking classes online. Read through your syllabus and plan your to-do schedule for weekly studying as well as longer preparations for exams, papers, or projects. Try to eliminate distractions (like your phone) and if necessary use headphones. Learn about the services your school offers like tutor centers in math and writing, whether online or on campus. You don’t have to do it alone! There are resources available to help you succeed! And lastly, if your school is online, or in a mixed format, then create peer study groups via a conferencing app as an alternative.

Find savings success: Saving money now is just as important as ever for college students. Whether school is online, in-person, or a hybrid format, we’re here to help. Know you’ve found the best prices for your textbooks by visiting BookScouter.com or using the BookScouter app (for IOS and Android).

Tips for Transitioning to College During COVID-19

Save money by getting the best price buying and selling your textbooks with BookScouter.com and the BookScouter app.

Get involved

This is advice you hear over and over, but it will make a difference. For our third transition tip, we recommend you make connections through clubs, activities, events, student government, or consider joining a sorority or fraternity. Consider intramural sports, or meet new people while volunteering for a worthwhile cause on campus, or in the community. If being online is your only option, find like-minded peers in an online club just as you would on campus. Don’t see one that fits you? Start your own club and recruit members!

Come together

Getting along with roommates (whatever that may resemble this fall) will be a key to your transition. Sit down together and set expectations for your shared space. Determine how to respect each other’s property and need for quiet time. Agree on what times are acceptable for visitors and consider making a cleaning schedule to make sure everyone is pulling their weight. If you’re doing school online you might need to give your family members heads up for times when you need it quiet for an exam or the Wi-Fi bandwidth for an online class discussion.

Tips for Transitioning to College During COVID-19

Make time every day to refuel yourself.


No matter where you are be sure to exercise, eat healthily, and get regular sleep as much as you can. Consider meditation or practice finding mindfulness throughout the day. Find a balance in your life by not neglecting either academics or your personal life. Consider using a time management method like the Pomodoro Technique, which breaks down your work into intervals with short breaks.

Good luck students, with your transition to this exciting new chapter, and remember…there are resources to help you!


How to Make Money Flipping Books

General By May 12, 2020 No Comments

We talk a lot about how easy it is to make money flipping books. Today we’re going to show you how to do just that. 

Here are the 9 steps to Making Money Flipping Books 

1. Begin with an inventory.

You can begin with just one book. Maybe it’s a book you used for school or one you found at a thrift store. Don’t feel intimidated by the future of your bookselling business when you begin. We all began with one book. If you have more than one book, that’s great too! We recommend starting small before investing too much money in purchasing new inventory to flip. (We’ll get to purchasing new books to flip a little later in this article). 

make money flipping stacks of books

Begin making money by flipping books you already have in your own home.

2. Research the going rate for your book based on its condition and edition.

By typing in the book’s ISBN into the search tool at BookScouter.com you’ll see the going rates for either “buying” or “selling” that book within seconds. The BookScouter app acts as a scanner that can speed up your research. Simply scan the code and see the prices offered by all of our online vendors. If you have hundreds or thousands of books you want to research, tap into our Pro User subscription to access the Bulk Lookup tool! 

make money flipping books using the bookscouter app

The BookScouter mobile app makes it easy to find the going price for a book fast. Selling books is easy on the app too!

3. Search for the best platform to post your book to sell.

BookScouter.com is the fastest way to flip your books. If you sell to one of our vendors, you ship the books immediately and get paid as soon as the book(s) is processed There are several other places our users have mentioned posting their books in the past like eBay and Amazon. If you think you may get a higher price by selling on another marketplace platform, create an account and list your book there. You’ll need to be more patient with this option, as you have to wait for your books to sell. If you use a marketplace, you will need to account for shipping costs (while shipping is free for books sold on BookScouter). You may also want to check out Amazon FBA. With this option, you ship your inventory to Amazon and set your pricing, and then Amazon ships your books directly to the customer when they sell (like consignment). Of course, there are fees associated with this service, but it is a popular option with book flippers. 

4. Sell your book.

On BookScouter this involves: typing in the ISBN, viewing the best prices, choosing a vendor, clicking “sell”, following the steps on the vendor’s website. With other marketplaces, such as eBay and Amazon, once you post your book for resale you’ll wait a little bit of time before a sale takes place. 

5. Ship your book.

make money flipping books by shipping books in exchange for cash

Shipping books is a big part of the flipping business. Factor shipping costs and materials into your profit margin.

Once your book has been purchased, package your book(s) ASAP! When packaging your books include the packing slip inside and add the shipping label on the outside of the box. Be sure to package the book in a safe way that minimizes any damage. You want your customer to receive the book in the same condition you described. Here’s another pro-tip: notify your customer of the tracking number or at least keep the tracking information until the package is received by your customer. 

6. Send the invoice.

While each platform is different as to when you receive your funds, it’s most common that your payment will arrive once the book has been processed and the customer confirms the condition is as described. Many marketplace platforms require payment for the book upfront, so you should receive your money fast. However, other places like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace depend on what you and the customer have agreed upon (typically pay in person or PayPal once the item is received). 

you can make lots of money by flipping books

When cash begins to pour in, designate funds to your profit as well as what you want to invest back into your business.

7. Designate your funds.

As with any business keep track of your revenue (you can use something as simple as a spreadsheet or invest in Quickbooks). Make sure you pay yourself and team for your work, pay any bills your business has (this type of business has low overhead, but as you grow you might add on additional paid services to streamline your work) and invest in your business. As you grow the business consider your own business license and bank account. Don’t forget to keep track of your revenue and payments for both personal records and tax purposes. 

8. Add to your inventory.

To help your business grow, we recommend investing a few thousand dollars to really kick things off! It may take some time (a few weeks to a couple of months) but it shouldn’t take too long for you to begin seeing a return on your investment, especially if you time it right. For the best resale profits, we recommend selling close to the start of a college semester (specifically if you’re selling textbooks). You can find books to add to your inventory in several ways: online, college students, liquidation sales, estate sales, and thrift stores. We discuss a few of these on our blog Best Resources for Reselling Books. 

9. Repeat!

Once you take these steps you’ll be able to confidently move forward with consistently making money by flipping books! 

Additional tips: 

  • Note the book condition. The condition of the book plays a role in how you should price for a sale. The conditions listed are typically Good/Like New, Acceptable, and Unacceptable. To make a profit you want to resell books that are either in “Good/Like New” or “Acceptable” condition. 
make money flipping lots of books

The condition of each book plays a big role in how you can price the book for profit.

  • Make sure you’re adding profit margins into the resale price. Take into consideration packaging and shipping costs in addition to the time you’re spending researching, posting, selling, and purchasing books. 
  • While our world is still experiencing changes due to COVID-19, continue to work safely. Trust your own intuition with visiting brick and mortar shops or meeting people in person to make book sales. If you are increasing your inventory from someone locally, consider having them pay you through PayPal, Venmo, or Cash App. Consider drop-offs (at a neutral location) while keeping as much distance as possible. Much of the work can be done at home, so we hope this gives you peace of mind when your health and safety is concerned. 

Now that you know how to make a profit from flipping books, use appropriate resources to make the most money. Start today by using BookScouter.com!