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UNCP Bookstore

General Bookstore FAQs
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Frequently Asked Questions About The UNCP Bookstore


1. Can I cash a check at the Bookstore?
Yes, The UNCP Bookstore cashes checks provided they meet the following requirements
Current student identification card is presented.
Payment is made in US dollars
The presented is $50 or less and made out to the UNCP Bookstore.
Check bears the name, address, and telephone number of the check's presenter.
A service charge of $25 US dollars will be assessed for any returned check. For the first returned check you will receive a warning. At that time the check plus the service charge must be paid immediately. If a second check is returned, you will loose your check cashing privileges for the remainder of the academic year.

2. How much do textbooks cost per semester?
On average, a college student pays approximately $350-$450 a semester.

3. What kind of payment options do I have in the Bookstore?
The UNCP Bookstore accepts cash, check, Visa, Master Card, and Bookstore Bucks as methods of payment.

4. What are Bookstore Bucks?
Students have the option of purchasing Bookstore Bucks at the Cashier's Office. Bookstore Bucks are stored on the student's ID card and can be used at any time. Students using Bookstore Bucks may use any cash register to access this account.

5. Can I set up a Bookstore charge account?
Yes, if you are receiving financial aid and have funds left over, you may ask the Student Accounts Office to transfer funds to the Bookstore for your use. These funds are available for approximately 5-7 days at the beginning of each semester. Dates of availability are posted in the Bookstore and on the Bookstore web page.

6. When can I purchase my textbooks?
The UNCP Bookstore generally has textbooks ready for purchase two weeks before classes begin. You may check availability on our web page.

7. What is the Bookstore's Return Policy?
TEXTBOOKS may be returned for full credit up to two weeks after the first day of classes in the Fall and Spring semester, up to one week after the first day of summer sessions I and II, and 72 hours after the first day of pre-session, intra session and COP classes. A dated cash register receipt is required for a refund during fall and spring semesters. A receipt and a copy of the student's class schedule is required to obtain a refund during summer classes. New books must be in the original selling condition. A full refund cannot be given on textbooks that have been written in, had the plastic removed, or been damaged in any way.

Students who drop a course may return their books within 48 hours after the course is dropped provided the Bookstore has not started processing returns. A drop/add slip signed by the registrar and professor and a cash register receipt is required. Returns processing starts 4 weeks after classes begin in the fall and 2 weeks after classes begin in the summer semesters.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE may be returned for a full exchange up to two weeks from the date of purchase provided that it is accompanied by a cash register receipt. Exceptions: there are no refunds on magazines or clearance merchandise.

Computer software cannot be returned once the package is opened. All sales are final on clearance merchandise.

8. When is the Bookstore open?
The Bookstore is open Monday through Thursday 7:45am-8:00pm and on Fridays from 7:45am-4pm. Extended hours are in effect the first week of classes. Exact dates and times are posted in the Bookstore and on our web page. Summer operating hours are posted in the Bookstore and on the web page.

9.Does the UNCP Bookstore offer Employment Opportunities to students?
The UNCP Bookstore provides part-time job opportunities for students. Positions are available both through work study and as a contract employee. For work study positions, visit the work study web site. For those who are not eligible for work study, contact the UNCP Bookstore to request an application.


Book buyback is an important part of the UNCP Bookstore's total textbook program. We make every effort to assure students of the highest possible payment for used books, but the reality is that there are many limitations that can cause a book to be of little or no value. The following information is our attempt to answers the questions most frequently asked about buyback.

1. Why does the UNCP Bookstore offer a buyback service?
There are two reasons: one is to establish a uniform method for students to dispose of texts no longer needed or wanted; the other is to obtain a supply of required books that can be resold to students at the lowest possible price. Although we aggressively shop the used book wholesalers, our best source of used books is still our own students.

2. When is buyback?
Buyback is offered on two different basis. Daily and Beginning/Ending Semester Buys. Book buyback is held during exam week at the end of each semester (Retail Buyback). Specific dates and hours are posted campus wide approximately two weeks before the end of the semester and two weeks at the beginning of the semester. Daily buyback services (Wholesale Buyback) is offered every day excluding the previously mentioned end-of-semestser buybacks.

3. Do I need my sales receipt to sell books?
No. While a receipt is needed to return books for a refund during the return period, you do not need a receipt to sell books at buyback. The only thing you need to bring to buyback is your valid UNCP student ID card. We cannot buy your books without a picture ID.

4. How does the bookstore determine which books to buy?
The selection of textbooks is always the responsibility of the individual instructor. As texts are adopted by the faculty for use in a coming semester, we compile a book list of texts that will be reused (i.e. books needed for the following semester that have been previously used on campus). We try to make this list as complete as possible, but for this we are dependent on the cooperation of the faculty. It is an unfortunate reality but complete information is not always available at buyback time due to changes in faculty and indecision on the part of instructors.

Next, based on class enrollments and existing book inventories, our textbook manager determines the quantity of each book which can be purchased at buyback. Due to space limitations as well as the uncertainties of future use and superseded editions the UNCP Bookstore pays 50% of the purchase price only for books to be reused the coming semester. Books not needed by the UNCP Bookstore are sold to a used book wholesaler who makes them available to other college stores around the country.

5. Why are some books worth so much more than other?
The best price is always paid for books needed by the UNCP Bookstore for the coming semester. If your book is in reasonable condition and has been adopted by a faculty member for use in the coming semester, the Bookstore will pay you 50% of the price you paid for the book, provided we are not already overstocked on that title. For example, a textbook with a list price of $30 will be worth $15 if purchased for the UNCP Bookstore.

View the Buyback Dollars Paid Out To Students During Our Retail and Wholesale Buybacks.
(The free Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to view and print the Buyback Slide.) Download Adobe Acrobat Reader now.

Unfortunately, there are several factors that can prevent a book from being purchased at the higher UNCP Bookstore price. Some of them are:
* The professor who last used the book has not yet submitted a book order, so we don't know if this book will be reused.
* The professor has chosen to reuse the book, but it has gone into a new edition. Once a new edition has been published, all order editions are of no value in the used book market; even the used book wholesaler will not buy it.
* The book is not being used the following semester at UNCP. This can be due to several factors:
The professor who last used the book has replaced it with a different title. The book was last used for a course that is not being offered the coming semester. In this case if your book is of fairly current copyright, you may wish to hold it and try your luck at the next buyback.

If books are not needed on UNCP's campus for the coming semester, it may still be possible to sell them through the Bookstore to a used book wholesaler. This is a special service we offer to students who wish to sell their books even though we can't buy them at the higher bookstore price.

Value of such books is determined by national demand and current marketability. Wholesale companies typically pay between 10% and 30% of the new book price for current editions of textbooks they can resell to other colleges and universities.

In some cases, there are limits to the quantity of books the Bookstore needs of a certain title. Once the Bookstore has reached its quota of such a book, we can offer only the "wholesale" value, i.e. the price the wholesaler will pay for that book. If for example, the bookstore needs only 50 copies of a book, we will pay 50% of the purchase price for the first 50 books we buy. Any books purchased after that will be purchased for the wholesale market at the wholesale price.

6. Why do the wholesalers only pay 10-30% for textbooks?
Used book wholesalers base the price they will pay for a book on their perceived "marketability" of that particular book. Many risk factors enter into the value of a book, such as the age of its edition and the book's demand on other campuses. In addition, wholesale companies must take into account the costs of shipping books to a central warehouse, processing them for resale, then selling and shipping them (hopefully) to other campuses at a low enough price that they will be competitive with new books.

Used book wholesaler's play a vital role in the college textbook market by recycling books not needed on one campus to other campuses needing the books. At the same time, they offer cash to students wanting to sell unneeded or unwanted books, while making possible substantial savings to students who purchase used books that have been obtained through wholesalers.

7. Why not sell all my books right now no matter what the price?
This is certainly a common approach, and if you need the money now, it makes sense. With textbook values, however, timing is everything. The buyback value of your books is based on need, and its value can go up or down depending on its use.

For books used on campus, it pays to sell early since titles with a buyback limit are purchased on a first come, first served basis. For titles purchased through a used book wholesaler, however, prices change dramatically only when books change editions. If you have reason to believe that a current edition textbook (copyright date only 1-2 years old) will be used sometime in the future even though it will not be used during the coming semester, you may wish to hold it for resale to the Bookstore at a later date rather than accept the lower wholesale price.

8. Why do some books have no market value to either the bookstore or a used book wholesaler?
Some of the most common reasons for a book to have no resale value are list below.
* The book is an old edition. Once a book changes edition, professors all around the country want the new edition; even though that book may have been purchased new, it will have no resale value on the textbook market. The average life of a textbook is about three years. The closer a book gets to this point, the less wholesale value it has. In general, it is best to sell your books as soon as possible after you have determined you no longer need or want them.
* The book is in unsaleable condition. Examples would include books with lost, torn or illegible covers, water damage, missing pages, contents separated from covers, loose bindings, or excessive highlighting which would make the book useless to the next person who buys it (e.g. a foreign language books with every translation written in). We reserve the right to refuse any book that in our judgment has deteriorated to an unsalable condition.
* The book is consumable/expendable. In general, we do not buy back workbooks, lab manuals, study guides or books with perforated (tear-out) pages. Other examples include books with filled-in pages that cannot be reused (e.g. Accounting worksheets): material that is constantly updated (e.g. Federal Tax Codes and Annual Edition titles), most loose leaf notebooks and locally produced custom published materials.

9. Anything else I should know about buyback?
We can't give specific buyback information over the telephone. It is simply too busy in the store and only the textbook buyers at the buyback counter have the updated information necessary to give the right answers.

Books don't have to be coddled. To sell them they must be in reasonably good condition, but we do not mean that you must be so protective of your books that you can't enjoy them...get the best use out of them. Underline some passages if that helps you understand and remember. To us, and to most students, this does not constitute deterioration. We'll still pay the fair market value for your books if you've taken decent care of it.

Finally, there is never a guarantee that textbooks you purchase will be used again by any instructor anywhere in the country. Textbooks are a learning tool, and hopefully, valuable to your education. You should not buy books with expectation of reselling everyone of them-that happens in very few cases. The real value of a book is obtained by studying it carefully. If it can be resold when no longer needed, that is an extra bonus.

The University of North Carolina at Pembroke Updated March 13, 2006
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