Selling Books

Category Business
From making room for new books to getting rid old text books, selling books is a perfect way to get some extra cash. Whether online or at a garage sale, there are many ways to sell your old books. This is a page about selling books.


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This really isn't a pointer on selling your old books but it is an option if you are an avid reader with lots of paperback books. There is a club online called paperback swap and you can visit it at

The premise is that you post your paperback boks for trade. As people select your paperbacks, you mail them to the other member. You pay for the shipping. Once they have the book and post receiving it, you get a credit. With this credit, you can look through the database. Select a paperback of your choosing and it gets mailed to you. You pay nothing, they pay for shipping as you did with the book you sent.

That is the basic premise, there may be a few more details. Visit their site and check it out. I use two of their sister sites and one works just as I explained above. The other charges a small fee (probably to cover site costs) but it is still worth it. On their Swap A CD site, I have been able to get CDs that are almost impossible to find to buy. You may find a book impossible to buy.


Happy reading

By Suntydt from Tazewell, TN

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September 6, 2007

I went through my books and DVD's and had some electronics I no longer use. I have made several hundred dollars by selling them on Amazon and eBay or try craigslist!

By Kat from Pittsburgh, PA

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

June 11, 2013

I have a 25 volume set of Britanica encyclopedias. I want to get rid of them, but don't know exactly where or to whom I should sell them. Any suggestions?


By Adrian L from Santa Barbara, CA


June 13, 20130 found this helpful

Hi - It is sad but you may find it difficult to even give this set away. Most libraries will not even take them for a book sale as very few people will even look at a set anymore.

You might try Craig's list or Free Cycle as they would be very expensive (and a lot of trouble) to ship a set like this.
Some people use them for crafts.

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February 23, 2012

I am looking to sell an entire library of books left behind in the house my husband and I purchased. How do I start the process and who might be interested in them? It is a very large variety, from antique encyclopedias to late novels.


By Debsbooks from Murrieta, CAa


February 24, 20120 found this helpful

You might try selling them in "batches" on Ebay. Try a box of mysteries or historical novels. Not too many per box for the sake of postage. You could also put them on amazon. I'm not sure how that works for sellers but I have bought a lot of books from them.

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February 24, 20120 found this helpful

You could look under books in the phone directory. They may have a classification of old books under the books heading or you could, as I did, go to google and type in used book stores in Murrieta California. There was a list of used book stores. I had some old books that I took to used book store. The owner knew a lot about books. Mine were not worth anything.

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February 24, 20120 found this helpful

You should go through each book to see if money was left in any of them. Happens more than you'd think. Also I have heard of people finding important letters or even a " Deed "to property in one. Encyclopedia sets, no matter the age are worthless.( Our Library,Thrift stores will no long take them for FREE ) But you might find a first edition ( or classics ) among the books.


Take the time to sort through all of them. If you can't sell them any other way have a yard sale, 25¢ for hard covers and 10¢ for paper backs are the going rate in CA. Good Luck.GG Vi

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February 25, 20120 found this helpful

It is a good idea to go through each one to see if there is money. I used to hide money in my books all the time and would at times even forget about it.

As far as selling your books. Check for first editions (especially the older books, those with dust jackets in good condition are good too.) Right now eBay has a no-fee listing that you might try. Search to see what your book may be worth - or what others are asking for their copy.

You can also try used book stores to see what they will give you for your books.


I am messaging you with a question.

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February 25, 20120 found this helpful

Here is a link that you can use to find out what your books are worth and where you can sell them. I use Amazon and Half. No complaints here.

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October 26, 2011

Any ideas how I can make money from my used books? They are in excellent condition, they haven't been opened or read. I've tried all the buy back companies that I am aware of, with no luck. Can anyone suggest any other sites?

By Irene C.


October 26, 20110 found this helpful

Most second shops or Charity shops buy books.or take it to the Flea market.

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October 26, 20110 found this helpful

My daughter has the hardest time selling her college books back every semester, and I spend over 100 dollars for them too. It's ridiculous at her school. That's what came to mind when I thought of your question, but have you tried eBAY?

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October 26, 20110 found this helpful

Check amazon, ebay, and any similar sites (you can google "sites like ebay" for a list) for the books you want to sell. Write down the highest and lowest prices they are being sold for (noting condition they're in), and sell them accordingly. To increase potential for a sale, sell them at a lower price than the lowest you found on any of the sites. Pricing them between lowest and highest, according to condition (i.e., poor - new, yours sound "like new"), might also be smart.

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October 29, 20110 found this helpful

I used to sell a lot of books on eBay, but with the present economy, that hasn't worked so well. However, I do notice that eBay has free listing now, though I don't know for how long.

Another option, besides garage sales, is to take your books to a used book store. They will generally give you in cash about 1/4 of their worth. What I do is "trade" the books and I will get at least 1/2 of their worth or more.

The book store will start an account for you and you can use that account to buy more books. I collect older books and a few of the newer authors. This has worked out very well for me. I'm basically trading my books for what I want - which is other books.

I'm lucky in that I live close to a larger town that has many, many used book stores and if one book store doesn't want all my books, I just go to the next one. I've had over $100 in accounts in just two to three book stores. And that amount will stay there until I use it.

I have actually bought nice books for 25 or 50 cents that I already have or have read or that I know the book store will buy. Just to take them to the book store to trade in for books I want. Those 25 or 50 cent books will actually give me $8 to $10 credit.

When you do this a few times, you will learn what the book stores are looking for. For instance, we have one used Christian book store in town so I know that I can't take an R-rated book to that store; however, they accept nice children's books, old classics and children's classics and the more G-rated and PG-rated books. I know books don't have a rating, but hopefully you see what I mean.

Hope this helps and good luck.

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November 5, 20110 found this helpful

If they're old, perhaps you might check your local antiques dealers? If they're rare, check rare-book shops. They should pay more than used book shops.

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April 25, 2012

I have a large collection of books I was given in a deceased estate. There is a great variety of both English and German books. There are encyclopedias, cookbooks, and other collections. I am looking for a site that I may be able to sell these on. The ages vary, many of them are from before 1970.


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March 31, 2012

How can I sell old World Book encyclopedias?

By Lee


March 31, 20120 found this helpful

I'm sorry but 99 % of the time these of no monetary value. Thrift stores around me won't even accept them as a donation.

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January 12, 2015

I have a set of books I am interested in selling. They are over 230 years old and it looks like the best way to find someone interested in them would be some sort of online transaction or auction website. The name of the set is not really important, just note that they are very old and bound in leather, it is also a particularly large set. I suspect these books have value, but I am nervous about selling them to a stranger online. How can I sell these books and rest easy knowing I won't be scammed? I am particularly nervous about receiving the money as I don't want someone to retract the payment somehow after they get the books in the mail. Any information or advice from people with experience would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you for your time.

By Isaac .

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October 2, 2013

I have in my possession the 1926 Book of Knowledge set of encyclopedias by Grolier with the original case. I am willing to sell them to an interested buyer for an appropriate cost. How do I find a buyer?

By Ellery from Milwaukee, WI

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August 21, 2013

I have a complete set of the Great Books (First Printing 1952). There are 54 volumes and it comes with a bookcase. It is in great condition. I am wondering where I can sell it and if it is really worth anything.

By Erna A.

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Post your ideas for selling used books below.


February 22, 20100 found this helpful

I have an account with and I sell (and purchase) used books and textbooks. I have been pleased with the site so far.

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March 11, 20100 found this helpful

you can also get a good price on

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December 6, 2012

I have a full set of Britannica encyclopedias from 1-24, plus A-Z dictionaries, and the atlas. I would like to sell them, but am not sure where the best place is to go. Could you advise me please?

By Rob

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Here's a website, two of my friends have used to sell books, where they pay you for the books they want. You go to the website and enter the ISBN number of the book (like UPC). It tells you if they can use it or not. They pay higher than you might make if you'd sold them at a yard or garage sale. They pay by PayPal and even pay the shipping charges. Have any books laying around, just gathering dust?


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ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

February 2, 2010

If you have a few minutes and would like to clean out your book shelves, you can try selling your used books at From what I've read on the site, they are mostly interested in non-fiction, but you can check it out for yourself. The site and process is very simple. You log onto the site, put in the ISBN number of your books and they tell you immediately whether or not they are buying the ones you have. If they are, they tell you how much they will pay you and send you a postage paid mailing label which you can print off. The service keeps you well informed. They let you know when they receive your books and processing did not take nearly as long as I expected. I had a check within weeks. It's definitely worth a shot.

By Marie from West Dundee, IL

Editor's Note: It looks like they really focus on text books. Another great place to to sell books is They also allow you to enter an ISBN number and they show you how much the books has sold for recently. If someone orders the book, you toss it in the mail to the person. You can make money from both non-fiction and fiction, but like the above site, newer editions of non-fiction textbooks are the best sellers. has a similar marketplace for selling your used books as well.


Make Extra Cash With Your Used Books

There is a local used bookstore in the area that offers credit for pretty much any used paperback. It isn't the same as cash but it does allow me to buy a new book and get rid of ones that I got and didn't care for.

Powell's Books is also in my area and they also pay cash for books. I think they might buy books online too. It is

By Jess (TF Editor)

Make Extra Cash With Your Used Books

I'm curious. What types of books sell the best besides textbooks? When referring to non-fiction, what types does this refer to? Thanks! (09/22/2007)

By Pattie

Make Extra Cash With Your Used Books

I was referred to a fantastic site for trading books, books that you've read or are not favorites that you would like to get rid of you can list here and can request others that you would like to have. It's a great site for avid readers. If you have a favorite author, be sure to search for them on the site. We found so many great books we didn't even know existed. A very close friend of mine, told me about the site and I've been using it for a couple of months. I've loved every minute of it. It is

It is a fantastic site where you can trade books. You pay the shipping to send books to others requesting them, and receive a credit for each book you send. You can then request a book that you would like and pay nothing for it.
The site gives you a few free credits when you first sign up and post 10 books up for trade. You can use those to pick out books of your interest right away! This site has been great. I joined before my husbands' birthday this year and found books by his favorite author we didn't even know existed! We are both avid readers, so it's saved us a lot of money by trading them. If you like the site and join, you can also receive a credit for a book you like by telling others about it, if they use your id as referer. It is fantastic and may save you some money if you are an avid reader. Great for Christmas gifts too! I would have to say that for the most part I like it better than or since the cost to ship a book out media mail is quite lower than I have paid to purchase books we enjoy at other sites. (10/23/2007)


Make Extra Cash With Your Used Books

Hello, I am Glen with and we offer a similar service as cash4books and we purchase quite a few items. As the editor mentioned is a great place to sell books, but if you are in a hurry to make room on your shelves then my site or cash4books is the way to go, with half your books my sit for awhile with no buyers. Hope this is helpful. (07/20/2008)

By Glen

Make Extra Cash With Your Used Books

I am Kevin with CKY Books. I would encourage everyone to check out our website at

While we do purchase textbooks, we are not just focused on buying back those books. We are interested in the following genres:

  • Religion History Psychology Textbooks
  • Business Educational Computers Travel
  • Medical Economics Marketing Art
  • Self-Help Sociology Politics Law
  • Gardening Sports Foreign Lang. Engineering
  • Mathematics Science Current Fiction Biography
If you are interested in selling your books online for top dollar quickly, please visit our site.

Also, we are always glad to answer any questions you may have.


By Kevin

Make Extra Cash With Your Used Books

Another site for trading used books, cd's and dvd's is It's the only site I've used so far and I really like it.


By Diane Abbruzzese

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