Timing is important for many things. From delivering a good joke to asking for a raise, mastering the timing is half the work. So when it comes to selling your textbooks, we want to equip you with time-tested wisdom for when to make the sale.

You don’t need to worry about the “when?” question anymore. Our team has been monitoring the best times to sell your textbooks for high sell rates and higher price points since we started in 2007.

Here is what we’ve learned over the past ten plus years about timing:

1. The beginning of the fall semester is THE best time to sell your textbooks. On average more students are attending college in the fall semester than the spring. This typically occurs because more and more students are graduating at the end of a fall semester than in years past.

2. The second best time to sell your textbooks, you guessed it: the beginning of the spring semester. Similar to the fall semester, at the beginning of the spring semester students recently received the syllabi for all their courses. This is the best time for them to buy their textbooks. Naturally, it is also your best time to sell.  

3. The third best time is the end of the spring semester. Likely due to students preparing for summer courses, the end of the spring semester is another great time to sell textbooks.

In addition to knowing the best time to sell your textbooks, we have a couple rules of thumb to remember: 

1. As a general rule of thumb with all three best times to sell is to post your books between 3 weeks before the semester begins and no more than 2 weeks after the semester ends.

Granted, college semester start dates vary. However, take a general poll of academic calendars of several large universities and that will help you gauge the best time frame to post your textbooks for sale. Not sure where to start? Take a look at Ohio State University’s future semester start dates HERE

Why sell up to two weeks after the end of the semester? Many students will change their course schedule after the first day or week of classes. This means they still need to purchase textbooks.

Now, you’re probably wondering, when should I avoid selling my textbooks?

2. Glad you asked. The least profitable times to sell your textbooks are the “middles.” The middle of the semester and the middle of the summer. Students are not looking for books then, and often, neither are bookstores. Avoid the “middles” to maximize your profit. 

No matter when you decide to sell your textbooks, BookScouter will help you make it a great sale!

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