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If you have questions, please call us at (603) 868-1297


Textbook FAQ for Students and Parents

How much can I expect to pay for books?

            You can figure approximately $125 to $150 per course for books. Some courses may be higher, others lower. In general, the more technical the subject, the higher the cost for books. We try to stock our shelves with as many used books as possible. Used books always cost 25% less than their new counterpart.

How do I know what books I need for my courses?

            In order to purchase books from us, you do not need to know the specific books for your courses. Instructors have provided us with information on their textbooks and we have stocked our store with all of the materials that you will need for your courses. You can view the required textbooks for your classes on our website ( or in person at our brick and mortar location.

What do I need to bring with me when I purchase books?

All you need when purchasing textbooks is your UNH schedule, including the departments, course numbers, and section numbers for your courses and we will get your books for you (example: University’s student website:

Do I have to ask for used books?

No, we always hand out used books first, as they are available on a first-come, first serve basis.

Can I pre-order my books at Durham Book Exchange?

Yes, we accept pre-orders through our website: Orders placed through our website are fulfilled before we open our doors for in-person sales, therefore have access to used texts first. Fall orders are processed mid-August and are ready for pick up before the semester begins. Spring orders are processed mid-January and are ready for pick-up before the semester begins. Our website is always open so that you can also order after classes begin. Orders are generally fulfilled within 24 hours on normal business days.

When do you open to sell books and what are your hours for the first week of classes?

            We open the weekend before classes start. We always extend our regular hours during the first week of classes, for example, the first day of classes we open our doors at 8am and close at 7pm. 

What forms of payment do you accept?

            We accept cash, VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, and personal checks. We accept third party billing (VA, Voc Rehab, and UNH purchase orders).  We also allow students to use their parents’ credit cards through an in-house hassle-free account or over the phone at time of purchase.

What is your returns policy?

            We accept textbook returns, with original receipt, through the first Friday after the semester begins.  If a return is made within 2 days of the original purchase, refunds are issued in the same form as the original payment.  If returns are made after 2 days of original purchase, a store gift card will be issued.  All returns are subject to a 10% restocking fee.  Textbooks must be returned in their original condition (intact shrinkwrap, unopened software). 

Will you buy my books back when I’m done with them?

            Yes! We buy back current edition textbooks year round at the current national wholesale price. We buy back books that were purchased from Durham Book, as well as other retailers. It doesn’t matter to us where they were purchased from originally. Many textbooks that are re-adopted by instructors for use during the following semester will be bought back for half of the original sale price. If an instructor has told us that they will use a certain text during the following semester, we are able to offer students up to 50% back of the original sale price, until the bookstore meets its need of that particular text, during the week of finals. We pay cash for books.

Do you rent textbooks?

            Durham Book does not currently offer a textbook rental program.

Why should I purchase my books at the Durham Book Exchange?  Why not order them elsewhere?

One of the great things about Durham is the lack of major chain stores dotting its streets.  Not only does this contribute to the character of the Durham/UNH community, but locally-owned independent businesses return approximately 80% of each dollar spent back to the community.  Chains and franchises contribute roughly 40% and at times as little as 20% of the store’s sales back into the community. One dollar spent at a locally-owned business will return five times that amount within the community through city taxes, employees’ wages, and purchase of materials and supplies at other independent businesses. In addition, these businesses will turn that dollar back into the community through school funding, social services, and contributions to local non-profit organizations.

Durham Book Exchange is a locally-owned, independent bookstore established in 1980.  We are not contracted with the University, we are the off-campus alternative to the University bookstore.  We try our hardest to get as many used books to sell as we can, purchasing used textbooks from students and as many as 8 different used book wholesalers. We also sell new books at the lowest prices possible. Durham Book Exchange maintains a student-based workforce. As an independent bookstore, we pride ourselves in customer service, attention to detail, and our partnerships with local organizations (many campus groups and clubs, Greek organizations, NHPTV, National MS Society, Greater New England Chapter, etc.) through which we give back to the UNH/Durham community.

            Durham Book Exchange has the most current information on the specific books and editions that your faculty requires for their courses. When you shop here, you leave with the correct materials for your courses at the time of purchase. There is no waiting and no shipping costs to incur.  Often books purchased elsewhere are not complete, not the correct edition, or do not contain the necessary software to complete coursework. If you order elsewhere, you may have to wait 4-6 weeks for delivery and pay extra in unanticipated shipping costs. If you change courses, you may return books purchased to Durham Book Exchange according to our returns policy, while most online retailers do not offer returns policies. You may also pay for your purchases with cash or personal checks, options not available through many other retailers.

I still have a question that wasn't answered here. Who can I contact?

You can contact us directly at (603) 868-1297.

* facts and figures from