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Selling used books?

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Selling used books?

Postby swoon_queen » Sun Nov 11, 2007 1:53 pm

I'm in unfortunately dire straits when it comes to money, desperate times calling for desperate measures, etc. I don't have much I could sell, aside from my beloved CD collection or my library of books that I've accumulated over 15+ years and lugged with me on every single move. I never thought the time would come when I'd have to consider selling my books, but here it is. I've downsized my bookshelves.

So the question is, would it be worth it to haul 150 books around town? Does anyone know what the going rate is for used books? My friend suggested Half Price Books and I'm really not sure if there is anywhere else that would buy them. Basically, if I can't get a decent amount of money for them ($100 or more) I would rather just keep them. The 150 books are all in pretty good condition, and about 20 of them are hardcover.

Thanks. (and if anyone knows of any part time jobs let me know!)
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Postby pattymcnutt » Sun Nov 11, 2007 2:03 pm

I've always had good luck selling old textbooks and such on ebay, but that can be time consuming and you would have to pay listing and selling fees, but you are likely to end up with more money that way than from half price books.

I don't know of any specific part time jobs, but this time of year there are probably seasonal retail jobs available....
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Postby blunt » Sun Nov 11, 2007 3:26 pm

It's worth it if you wish to share your books with others rather than simply throwing them in the trash.
But you aren't going to make any money.
Unless you're dealing in rarities at an antique shop, you'll get 50 cents to a buck a book, if that.
It's not that you're being ripped off---it's the nature of the beast. Used CD and bookstores can only make money and keep things cheap for consumers by paying as little as possible for used stuff and pricing it low.
But if you are so desperate and you need something then sell your CD's: you usually get 3-5 bucks for certain CDs and DVDs.
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thanks

Postby swoon_queen » Sun Nov 11, 2007 4:08 pm

Really? $3-$5 for CDs and DVDs surprises me for some reason. I guess I thought that since the advent of mp3s and the predominance of burning CDs the price would drop drastically. Hm. I suppose I now need to take a deep breath and sift through my music. <gulp>
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Postby Veeder » Sun Nov 11, 2007 6:37 pm

I've sold a ton of books on Amazon. Some really popular books are worthless but you'd be surprised how much you can get for some others (especially hardcover). The buyer even pays the shipping costs for you. Its worth a look.
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Re: thanks

Postby blunt » Mon Nov 12, 2007 5:20 pm

swoon_queen wrote:Really? $3-$5 for CDs and DVDs surprises me for some reason. I guess I thought that since the advent of mp3s and the predominance of burning CDs the price would drop drastically. Hm. I suppose I now need to take a deep breath and sift through my music. <gulp>


Actually, you're right.
My statistics were from a few years ago.
To get 5 for a CD nowadays you have to have to know the clerk.
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Re: thanks

Postby lordofthecockrings » Tue Nov 13, 2007 3:41 pm

blunt wrote:To get 5 for a CD nowadays you have to have to know the clerk.

Or blow the clerk.

Uh ... not that I'd know ...
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Postby swoon_queen » Tue Nov 13, 2007 7:41 pm

Hm, could be worth checking out (the knowing, not the blowing) because for 100 or so books including a good amount of hardcover ones, half-price books gave me $25.

I was chagrined. Especially because out of a bunch of avant garde, well-reviewed independent press novels and autism research manuals and women's studies textbooks, the guy who inspected my collection told me this: "Out of all the books that you gave us, we see most of them very frequently. Except these three."
1.Dickens' Great Expectations (paperback, I kept my hardcover copy).
2.Kafka's The Trial (ditto).
3.Some ridiculous Jodi Picoult paperback my mom gave me to read on the plane.
Those were the only three he could offer me more than 25 cents for.
Um, whatever.
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Selling Used Books?

Postby Lily » Tue Nov 13, 2007 7:55 pm

Half Priced Books and Frugal Muse will give you something but not a lot. They will give more "credit" if you bring your books in to trade for others on their shelves. I have better experiences with Frugal Muse since they have a lot more inventory that I'm interested in and their stock seems to move. Plus, they often have free chocolate chip cookies. My suggestion is don't bring the entire haul in at one time. About 10 books at a time. Otherwise they'll be giving you the saturation price. Best time during the Holidays is around Thanksgiving but you won't get as good a deal if you bring them in at the end of college semester/moving days.

Keep in mind too, that shoppers in the store keep an eye on what others are bringing in. I received as gifts a duplicate set of Lord of the Rings, directors cut and brought the one set in to Half Price on west side. A real fan said whatever the store offers he'll offer more. And he did! Both of us went away with a great deal. Well, maybe not Half Price, but they could always have presented a counter offer.
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Postby dudemeister » Wed Nov 14, 2007 2:54 pm

Sell them on Amazon or Half.com.

While I still had books and CDs, I'd list them for the lowest price for used ones on Amazon and usually get an order fairly soon. Then I'd sit in front of the TV, wrap them in old paper bags and ship 'em out.

Not as easy as dumping them at Half-price books but you might was well be selling them at $.10/pound because that's about what you get from them. You will make a lot more money on-line.
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Postby Prof. Wagstaff » Wed Nov 14, 2007 3:03 pm

swoon_queen wrote:Those were the only three he could offer me more than 25 cents for.
Um, whatever.
Just out of curiosity, how much do you think they should have paid you?
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Postby swoon_queen » Wed Nov 14, 2007 3:31 pm

Based on the condition they were in (very good) and from previous experiences selling used books, I was hoping for about $1 per book. Even the paperbacks averaged about $12 new. I would have been happy with $75 total owing to the fact that many of them were paperbacks.

The last time I sold books to a used bookstore, they gave me about $1.50 per book.

I spent time at Half Price Books going through their stacks, and they resell the books at usually no less than $6, usually more.
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Re: Selling Used Books?

Postby blunt » Thu Nov 15, 2007 3:59 pm

Lily wrote:Half Priced Books and Frugal Muse will give you something but not a lot. They will give more "credit" if you bring your books in to trade for others on their shelves. .


For those in dire straits who really need some cash:
selling your used books is futile.
But for those who like to read and don't want to throw old books away:
getting credit or trading for other books is great.
And for those who just want to spread the book of love:
leave them at the library or try seomthing like Book Crossing, where you tag your books and release them into the wild...
http://www.bookcrossing.com/
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Postby Shipley » Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:24 pm

Selling books, movies, video games, music, cars, almost any usable commidity you are going to come away at a significant loss. I've sold them all, and have seen the trade in value take the color out of a person's face far too frequently.

Fact is the used buyer expects bottom dollar and the store has to make something as well as pay for fixed costs like payroll, electricity, etc.
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Re: Selling Used Books?

Postby Lily » Thu Nov 15, 2007 11:14 pm

blunt wrote:
Lily wrote:Half Priced Books and Frugal Muse will give you something but not a lot. They will give more "credit" if you bring your books in to trade for others on their shelves. .


For those in dire straits who really need some cash:
selling your used books is futile.
But for those who like to read and don't want to throw old books away:
getting credit or trading for other books is great.
And for those who just want to spread the book of love:
leave them at the library or try seomthing like Book Crossing, where you tag your books and release them into the wild...
http://www.bookcrossing.com/


--------
Blunt is, of course, correct. If you're in need of cash selling books is not the best way to generate funds. It works best if you let them give you a "trade value" and pick up other stuff on their shelves you want.

Wow. Book Crossing. Hadn't seen that one. Thanks!!
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