Most of us are familiar with this specific situation. You enter the bookstore, telling yourself, promising yourself, that you’re just going to buy three books—one hardcover and two paperbacks. Fast forward three hours later. You exit the bookstore with a stomach full of vanilla lattes and a tote bag heavy with three hardcovers and six paperbacks. It’s the age-old problem that bookworms everywhere go through. Budgeting is difficult when it comes to books. As soon as you enter a bookstore, you forget just how much you have in your bank account. But don’t worry, budgeting is hard (because new books are simply too irresistible to ignore), but not impossible.
Here are five easy budgeting tips for bookworms so take notes.
1. Borrow books from libraries
One of the best things ever created for the general public is the library. Take advantage of your library’s services and borrow books. Sometimes it gets difficult and you grow impatient waiting for newly released books to arrive at your local libraries. However, there’s a whole building of books to borrow from so distract yourself from the wait and explore the books that your local library has to offer while waiting for newly released books to arrive.
2. Buy books at a library sale
It’s a hilarious concept, buying books at libraries. But every so often, libraries take out their gently used books and hold an enormous library sale. Going to any sale is a great way to get the things you want in addition to ensuring that you stay within your budget. So stay in the loop and keep your ears out; your college or university libraries and local libraries might hold book sales to clear up for space and inventory. You might even discover your new favorite book while perusing.
3. Gently used books are your friends
This tip echoes tip number two, but when you’re budgeting, gently used books are going to be your best friend. Opt for used books. Since my college days, buying used books has become a habitual standard, and now as a reflex, I always click to check (on websites) for a used book option or see if there is a used book pile at bookstores. Better yet, visit some cool used bookstores and you might discover the coolest books ever— they always end up having an eclectic array of books to offer.
4. Wait for the paperback
If you want a new copy of a book or to support your favorite writers but can’t exactly fit it in your budget for this month, wait for the paperback to come out. It takes a little patience, but when you’re budgeting always consider the more wallet-friendly path because at the end of the day, you still get the book you want and are still able to support your favorite writers.
5. Start a book club with your friends
If you can learn anything from budgeting, learn that sometimes you have to take a creative route. Start a rotating book club with your friends. You don’t even need to buy new books, just take a book from your already existing collection and exchange books with your friends in the club. This is a great way to read something new, make new bookish friends, and save money.
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