Salt Lake Community College students are saving money by taking advantage of the new textbook rental program. The rental program is offered at the three SLCC bookstores on the Taylorsville Redwood, Jordan and South City Campuses.
“The number one thing for students anywhere is how to defray or recoup some of the net cost of textbooks,” said Steven Ferre, director of the Taylorsville Redwood Campus College Store for the past 43 years. “Textbook rentals are a hot topic because they reduce textbook costs.”
Students guarantee textbook rentals with a debit or credit card, and need return them one week from the day courses begin to receive a full refund.
Otherwise, rental textbooks are due back about one week after finals or the student is charged the full amount for the textbook along with the rental fee. A notification email is sent to the student giving them the due date.
Although convenient and cheaper, textbook rentals may not always be the best option for students.
“Many students only consider the upfront retail cost of a textbook, so the rental price looks like a great deal. In my opinion, the used book deal is a better deal; net cost,” said Ferre.
A textbook rents for between 60 to 70 percent of the retail price. Used books prices are approximately 75 percent of the new retail price. SLCC usually buys back textbooks at 50 percent of the new retail price, so it ends up costing the student 25 percent of the full retail price. That ends up computing out to be about a 35 to 45 percent savings over renting.
The downside is the College Store will not always buy the purchased books back at the end of the semester. With the rental program, the textbook is returned at the end of the semester.