USI Bookstore expands rental program

Jessie Hellmann

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Paying up to $1000 for schoolbooks can be a painful process for any college student, but the USI bookstore has begun offering a less expensive alternative for students.

Due to popularity, the bookstore has extended their rental program to include over 200 titles and ebooks said Bookstore Manager Mike Goelzhauser.


“Times are changing, and of course the bookstore needs to change with the times,” he said.

Students will pay 45 percent less  than the list price if they rent a new book, 25 percent less for used books and 35 percent less if they buy an ebook.

When a student rents a book from the bookstore, an expiration date will be on the receipt. If the book is not returned by that date, or a book is returned in poor condition, the bookstore will charge the credit card that is on file. 

If the bookstore does not have a credit card on file, they will inform the university and a hold will be placed on grades and registration until the student pays for the book.

“We do not charge any rental fees or any deposits, so basically you’re just renting the books as if you were going to rent an apartment,” Goelzhauser said.

Not all books are available for rental at the bookstore. Books of older editions and book packages which require access codes and workbooks are not available for rental. Goelzhauser said he believes the bookstore has the correct editions on all textbooks the university requires while other rental stores may not.

Manager Lyndsey Dibble finds this not true regarding TXTbook Rental. 

“We have just as many resources if not more to get the correct editions, and we offer old editions,” Dibble said.

TXTbook Rental, a textbook rental store located on the Lloyd expressway, does rent books with access codes which is something USI’s bookstore does not do. If a student needs a book package from the USI bookstore, they will have to buy the whole book package.

Dibble said renting old editions can be cheaper on students than renting new editions.

TXTbook Rental does charge a security deposit, but only on books that are paid with cash. The security deposit is 25 percent of the total book order. 

“I think we are a lot more customer friendly,” Dibble said. “I think we make an effort to help as give as much information as possible to students.”

Students can rent books online or in store at the USI bookstore with any form of payment they have available whether it be student loans, grants, cash, checks or credit/debit cards.

USI’s bookstore noticed more students were interested in renting books instead of purchasing them, so last year the bookstore offered about a dozen books for rental. It was a success with the students.

“This semester we are going full force, we have well over 200 titles right now, we are continuing to make this list go,” Goelzhauser said.  “Economic times are tough for people,and people don’t have 200 dollars for textbooks.”

He said all the profits from the bookstore go back to the university to fund different student activities and programs.

“Without that kind of money, there are going to be departments that are hit hard,” Goelzhauser said.