What is the best way to sell my book collection?
Post ReplyPost New TopicPosted 1/9/2011 by Grace2882 in NSBR Board

Giving up Ding Dongs for better health

PeaNut 284,768
November 2006
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Loc: West Virginia

Posted: 1/9/2011 11:19:08 AM
I have a huge book collection and am wanting to sell it. I do not want to donate them. I have a small fortune in this collection and we are building a new house and I would like to not have to pack them for the move. I thought about putting them on Ebay but am not sure if this is the best way to get rid of them or not. Has anyone had any experience at selling about 350-400 books?


PeaNut 196,615
March 2005
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Loc: in front of my computer - where else would I be?

Posted: 1/9/2011 11:21:34 AM
Do you have a Half Price Books store in your area? You can make arrangements to take in your collection and they will give you price to buy them. You can accept it or not.


Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 184,789
January 2005
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Loc: pacific northwest

Posted: 1/9/2011 11:34:00 AM
I don't know, but I think I would invite a local used book store owner over to see what they want and what they'll pay. Like having your antiques appraised. Or use craigslist. Shipping out all those books would be a pain. But if you do, see if the PO still has "bound materials" rate.

Giving up Ding Dongs for better health

PeaNut 284,768
November 2006
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Loc: West Virginia

Posted: 1/9/2011 11:35:59 AM
I don't have a half price store in my area. There is a used book store in local flea market and I had planned on checking with them next weekend if the Peas hadn't come up with a better solution. I have been told though that they only pay fifty cents a book. There is no way I am going to sell some of these for fifty cents each.


PeaNut 39,832
June 2002
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Posted: 1/9/2011 11:37:24 AM
You have pea-mail!

Sunny Side Up!

PeaNut 52,709
October 2002
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Loc: watching Top Chef Canada

Posted: 1/9/2011 11:37:39 AM
Are these reading books? Hardcover? Leather bound first editions?

If they are worth money, you could contact a private buyer to see if there is interest. At least get an idea from a store or buyer before trying ebay etc. so you get a fair price.

Lisa D.J.

Canon 7D:70-200mm f/2.8L:85mm f/1.8:60mm macro and PSCS5

Giving up Ding Dongs for better health

PeaNut 284,768
November 2006
Posts: 10,363
Layouts: 2
Loc: West Virginia

Posted: 1/9/2011 11:44:15 AM
Joyful- I don't see peamail. I will keep looking for it.

Boo!! I was just posting on your post at the same time you were posting on mine. haha None of my books are considered collectors. They are just a mixture of some paperback and hardbound books that I really enjoyed but doubt that I will read again so no sense of taking them with us on the move.

We bought a 45 acre farm and are planning on getting chickens and cows and I know I could use the money to build coops and fences, etc...

pearl-clutching nitpicker

PeaNut 201,774
April 2005
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Loc: gone to chemo with BethAnne

Posted: 1/9/2011 1:04:28 PM
Grace, the fact is that used books that aren't collectible just don't sell for much. Not on eBay or anywhere else. Save yourself the headache and sell your collection to the used bookstore for whatever they'll give you, or just donate them somewhere.

BTW, pea mail notice is broken ... the number doesn't change at the top of this page when you have pea mail. You need to just go to your inbox to find it.

northern california

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts."
--Bertrand Russell


PeaNut 131,952
February 2004
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Loc: central Texas

Posted: 1/9/2011 1:43:45 PM
I wouldn't bother with Half Price Books, they will not pay
much at all.

Maybe half.com (Ebay)?
I have no idea what listing fees are but if you sold each
one individually, it will be time consuming, so you need
to decide if it is worth your time.

Do you have any friends or family who would love to get
free cookbooks? At least they would think of you whenever
they used the books

Craig's List, maybe list 10 books per set and sell each set
for a certain dollar amount based on the type of book it is.

I myself have been paring down my collection, but I only
have 30 or so, so I just been giving them to the library.

Ideay pues?

PeaNut 143,106
April 2004
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Loc: Miami

Posted: 1/9/2011 5:03:53 PM
It really depends. I think generally used books don't sell for much. I do have some Linda Howard stuff (first editions) that I'd never sell, but that I've seen go for as much as 50 bucks per book on ebay. Unless they are something like that, I would just contact a used bookstore to see how much they would give you for them.


PeaNut 375,830
May 2008
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Loc: Boston

Posted: 1/9/2011 6:47:06 PM
We tried selling books at our last yard sale with no luck. We ended up donating them and getting a receipt for tax purposes. We were further ahead that way.

People might love their books but buyers do not share the love!


PeaNut 140,176
April 2004
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Posted: 1/9/2011 7:09:00 PM
Amazon used books?

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 288,459
December 2006
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Posted: 1/9/2011 7:18:17 PM
I have had reasonable luck selling used books to bookstores, but only when it is still a very new "hot" title. Once it is 6 months or more out from the release date, you get almost nothing for the books. I've never been able to sell books at yardsales for over $1. If you think about when peas post about getting books at yardsales, they are bragging about bags of books for a couple dollars.

I've bought used copies of new releases, read them, and then sold them within a matter of a couple weeks. In that case it works well, but not otherwise.

Hopeful Romantic

PeaNut 13,226
March 2001
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Posted: 1/10/2011 8:37:09 AM

We bought a 45 acre farm and are planning on getting chickens and cows and I know I could use the money to build coops and fences, etc...

I feel out of the loop! LOL!

I'd go with the 50 cents per book. Better than Half Price Books.

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 11,642
February 2001
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Loc: Ohio

Posted: 1/10/2011 9:02:17 AM
This is slightly OT-we had a group garage sale for my daughter's dance team about a year or so ago. There was a man who came in who had a scanner on his smartphone and he scanned all of the books to look them up somewhere and then offered to buy certain books. He seemed to know exactly what the resale value of the books was, and I'm sure he had quite a gig going-he only bought the books he knew would sell well. He even asked very specific questions-like does this book include the CD that came with it?

I don't know how to find one of these people, but I felt like I got really fair prices from him, but he really didn't want everything. Maybe he resells them through Amazon?


PeaNut 49,766
September 2002
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Loc: by the bay

Posted: 1/10/2011 11:22:17 AM
It is time consuming, but you could pull up the books on Amazon and see what they are selling for/list yours for sale. (I'm cleaning out my collection as well, listed a bunch on Amazon Saturday and already have over $100 in sales this morning). Also, Amazon has a trade-in program that might work for you. You will be paid in Amazon credit, but there is so much on that site that you could purchase for your new home (which sounds amazing).

If nothing else goes well, you just might want to donate them and take the write-off.

Good luck!


PeaNut 210,331
June 2005
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Loc: Montana

Posted: 1/10/2011 12:13:38 PM
I have sold books on half (and Im assuming the Amazon is the same way). Its not like an auction. You list them for sale and then you have to hang on to them until someone wants them. So you may end up having them for quite some time anyway. If you are clearing out for room or for some quick money, I would sell them in lots on ebay or take them to the used book store.
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