BookRenter founder Colin Barceloux here, and like you (and most students), I was very frustrated with the high cost of textbooks, as I paid over $500 each quarter while at Santa Clara University. To help pay for textbooks (and other necessities like beer, food, and clothes), I worked part-time as a campus mail carrier. Often while driving around campus, I would notice a large number of discarded textbooks just lying around. There were even huge stacks of books on the bookstore’s “Zero Value Table,” containing books that the bookstore wouldn’t buy back. To me, something seemed wrong with the fact that a book’s value could drop from $100 to $0 in a few months.
So, I started to collect all these unwanted books, and sold them online to students all over the country on eBay, Half.com, and Amazon. Then it hit me – the practice of buying a book, using it, and selling it is really just a rental! Thus the idea behind BookRenter, and the entire textbook rental category, was born.
We have grown tremendously since the early days of selling used books for extra beer money, but our core mission — to make education more affordable for everyone — still drives us today. So go out there and rent textbooks!
So again, welcome!
— Colin Barceloux and Emma the Dog