5 Great Ways to Sell Used Homeschool Books

*This has been a popular topic, I followed up here, here and here with some earnings reports and more tips.

I’ve purchased a lot of books both new and used over the years and I’ve kept non-consumable books in excellent condition with an eye toward recovering value for them. There are some books that just don’t have value once used and I just try to pass those on to friends or donate them.

As tempting as it is to try to recover close to full value for your items, you might have better success if you knock a few dollars off the price in consideration of the following: the value you obtained from the item, the value in clearing out some space, the value in simplifying, the value in letting go, the value in sharing with others who might not be able to afford the item at full price, the condition of the book, the edition and the time and energy and cost in shipping.

In no particular order, here are the best ways that I’ve found to sell used curriculum.

1. Local Homeschool Curriculum Fairs:
Chances are, you have a chance to attend a local homeschool workshop or curriculum fair. Usually, the organization takes a small percentage of the sale but you can set your own prices. This type of venue attracts a lot of new and veteran homeschoolers on the hunt for used books. They understand the cost of buying new and shipping and often know exactly what they’re looking for. If you’re going to take advantage of this opportunity, be prepared to check in early and wait until the end of the day to receive payment and collect your unsold materials.The disadvantage of this method is that you have to drag your books to the sale, wait around to get paid, drag the unsold items back home (or donate them) and label everything in advance.
2. Amazon:
You can’t beat the exposure on Amazon.com.┬áIf you aren’t in a hurry to sell, it’s easy to list books and set your price. You can also see what price others are asking. Be honest about the condition of the book. Amazon collects a small commission on the sale price and reimburses a portion of the shipping cost. Your earnings are clearly stated when you list based on your asking price. Be sure to set the books aside and ship materials promptly. You can have fun with this and be creative about “naming” your store. Mine is called “Being Home Books“. Fun!
3. Half.com:
I have also sold books on half.com, a division of ebay. I’ve had better turnover on amazon so I haven’t used this site since. You’ll need to set up an account but it’s also very easy to list books. Same advice applies: ship promptly, honest description, fair price. I think this site only keeps a small percentage of the shipping fee charged to the buyer.
4. Cathswap.yahoo:This is a moderated yahoo group specifically for Catholic resources. I have seen secular and other Christian resources listed but I’m not sure if their guidelines prohibit that. You’ll have to register on yahoo and request permission to join the group (a brief description of who I am and how long I’ve been homeschooling was sufficient in my case). Aside from the normal courtesy guidelines, I don’t think there are restrictions for listing curriculum (how often, how many items or a requirement to purchase something first). I just looked at few posts and followed their examples. You can set your own price and decide who pays shipping. If you accept paypal, it’s worth the small commission to avoid the hassle of waiting for a check to clear. If your buyer does not use paypal, and you’re willing to take another form of payment, ask for a money order.
5. Local Homeschool Lists:

If you don’t have a go-to person who seems to have the email address of every person homeschooling in the region (like I do), you can search Yahoo for local homeschooling groups in your area. These can be general or specific (perhaps for religious groups or area of the city). Again, these are usually moderated and require permission to join.I love Craigslist but I haven’t had a whole lot of success selling books. I try not to list anything on Craigslist valued less than $25 anyway.What are your best tips for selling used homeschool books? Please share!
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