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how to make money selling used books

Finding books to flip isn’t as hard as one might think.  Sure we are all hoping we land on a rare 18th century 1st edition book signed by the author but besides landing on a once-in-a-lifetime find, there are other ways of making money with used books.  Best of all, flipping these days are much easier due to new tools available to the general public.  Let’s take a look at how to make money selling used books.

Where to find the books?

Around your house – Like most people, there are stacks of books on your bookshelves and/or piled up in boxes in your basement that hasn’t been touched for ages.  Sell them.

Friends / Family – Same concept as above.  Got friends or family that have stacks of books that never get touched?  Or if they are the total opposite where they read a book a day and they end up donating dozens upon dozens of books every month?  Find a way to pick them up for free.

Garage Sales / Free Markets – Many times you see boxes of books for sale marked $.25 – $1.00.  Rather than try to figure out how much each book would net you, make a deal with the seller.  Offer to buy the whole box of books for a buck or two.  This works extremely well towards the end of the day when they are about done.  Most likely the seller just wants the books gone and is willing to take anything.  I bet some would even allow you to have them for free.

Thrift Stores – Prices are set from thrift stores but make sure you check out the inside pages and covers to the books your thinking about flipping.  Many times you’ll find the books signed by the author which bumps up the value tremendously.  Also every so often you’ll find money within the pages.  Don’t ask me why but people do it and forget about them!

Library Sales – Libraries often have sales to clear out old books and sometimes they can be of value.  Check out the non-fictional hardcovers first.  Paperbacks tend to be in worst shape than hardcovers for obvious reasons so I normally stay away from paperbacks altogether.

eBay – It doesn’t happen very often but sometimes you can find some great books on eBay that you can profit from.  This is rare because if the book is profitable you got a ton of people with visibility into this.  My advice is to focus on a set of books or specific books where you know the value very well.   That way you can set alerts or manually browse for them daily and pick them up right away.

Where to sell the books?

Image result for bookscouter

With modern tools provided by sites like BookScouter.com, selling used books is now a breeze.

From BookScouter’s website:

BookScouter helps you sell your books for the most money by comparing offers from over 50 buyback vendors with a single search. This allows you to quickly and easily find who is paying the most for your textbooks. Oh, and BookScouter is 100% free to use with no registration required.

BookScouter is what I would recommend to everyone looking to make money from used books.  When you load up the site, all you have to do is enter a book’s ISBN number (right next to the UPC) and it’ll do its magic. The next page will come back with a dollar amount all these separate vendors who are willing pay for that book.

If you decide you want to sell your book, just click on the sell button next to the vendor and you’re all set.  You will be emailed a shipping label and then all you have to do is ship the book within 7 days.  Oh btw, shipping is free.  Normally if you were to ship book with USPS, it would cost around $5-6 dollars.  That would make no sense at all if the book’s value is only a few bucks.  But with BookScouter, shipping is free so that’s one less thing to worry about.

In Conclusion

Flipping books isn’t rocket science and it is a very easy way to gain you extra cash in your pockets every month. The old days requiring you to sell rare books to auctions or collectors only are gone.  Now literally you have over a dozen vendors fighting to buy books from you!  Good Luck.

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