The Budget Smart Girl’s Guide to Clutter Clearing-Books

admin / April 9, 2008

If you read this week’s blog, you’ll know that last week I did some clutter clearing in my office and quickly came to the conclusion I have one too many books.
So this got me thinking about, one, how do I get rid of some of them…I mean other than tossing them away? And two, is it possible to make myself some money in the process?

Half.com
For the last four years I’ve listed books on Half.com, www.half.com, which is part of the eBay community. I’ve found some books sell quicker than others and that pricing them in a competitive range (the site does give you guidelines for pricing) seems to be the key to making the most money there. Half.com does take a commission, but you can send the books via media mail, with prices starting at $2.13. And the best feature is Half.com reimburses you for the postage.

Local Used Bookstores
For some reason these seem to be disappearing now, but you can still find the odd used bookstore or two. You don’t make any money, but you trade in your books and get in store credit. When you buy a book you get something like 70% off the retail price

Online Trades
One book swap site I’m already a member of is Frugal Reader. www.frugalreader.com. I list the books I no longer want, others browse through the list, request a book. I package it, pay the postage… usually around $2.13 and get a credit. When I want a book, I request it and then another member sends it to me, at no cost. Other online swap sites include www.paperbackswap.com and www.bluerectangle.com. Check them out and see which one works best for you.

Those Leftover Textbooks
When I graduated from university I had lots of textbooks that I knew I’d never read…or never want to read, ever again. Maybe no one else wants these books but one option is to make a list, price them, and then ask if you can put the list on a notice board at a local college or university. With tuition and the cost of books increasing, I’m sure some students are looking for bargain books and ways to trim costs. Or you can try selling them on this online site that specializes in just textbooks. www.textbookwheel.com

Not Just a Swap But a Way to Make Money on the Web
I did find these two sites. www.cash4books.net www.bookemporium.com
Both allow you to type in the ISBN and they’re tell you instantly if, one, they’re actually buying that book. And two, how much they’ll willing to pay for it?
I typed in a couple of paperback novels I’d just finished reading and both sites told me the same thing, that they’re not buying these titles right now. I then tried a couple of non-fiction books and was told they would give me $2.48 for each of them. For now, I’ve opted to put my non-fiction titles on Half.com and if they don’t sell there, I might give one of these sites a try. Failing that you can…

Donate To Charity
I can’t stand the thought of ever throwing books into the garbage, so once I’ve exhausted all avenues of selling or swapping them, I’ll donate them to charity. While you won’t make any money, do keep track of all your donations and claim them on next year’s tax return.

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