Trade Credit Policy
We are pleased to give in-store trade credit for books. This is where the majority of our books come from, and gives our customers a way to reduce their reading costs.
We give 1/4 of the Canadian cover price for softcover books, always giving a minimum of $1.75 in credit for most books (youth books have a minimum of 1.25, westerns have a minimum of $1.50); we give $3.00 in trade credit for adult hardcovers, and $2.00 for youth hardcovers.
Books that we accept must be in decent condition - look at the book, if you would not purchase it from us in that condition, then we probably won't take it, either. Books that are moldy or smell moldy, are damaged or have pages missing, spines broken, etc., will not be accepted.
Your trade credit can be used to pay up to 50% of your purchase of previously enjoyed books. That means you cannot use it on new books, or on special orders, or on consignment books. Consignment books are usually marked "no trade credit" to avoid confusion.
There are some books we don't take (because they don't sell):
- Reader's Digest condensed books
- Textbooks (except for English Lit type of books)
- Harlequin romances (except for name authors like Nora Roberts, Debbie Macomber)
- computer books
- fiction hardcovers without dust jackets
- men's adventure books
- health books older than 2007
- books that we have too many copies of
Q: Why can't I use trade credit to pay for all of my purchase? I've done that at another store.
A: Our suppliers (landlord, NBPower, Aliant telephone, etc.) do not accept trade credit as payment, therefore we have to generate cash to pay the bills. There are really two ways to do that - we could sell other products (magazines, candy, etc.) to generate cash, or we can have a 50/50 cash/credit policy for book sales. Selling other products would mean we would have less space for books, which means we would have to reduce our selection. Other stores have chosen this approach, and it works for them, but we would rather offer the most selection to our customers. The 50/50 policy is fairly common among used bookstores that do not sell other products.
Q: Will my trade credit expire?
A: No. Never. If you move away for 3 years, when you come back your trade credit is still good (that has actually happened).
Q: I forgot my customer card.
A: Trade credit is actually tracked on our computer system. If you forget your card, just give us your phone number at the cash, we'll ask you to confirm your name and you can use your trade credit.
Q: Why can't I use my trade credit towards new books?
A: The simple answer is cash flow. We actually tried that for a while, but the sad truth is that fluctuating exchange rates and fluctuating Canadian cover prices (as compared to US prices) mean we lose too much money on each new book sold with trade credit. We've opted, instead, to make new books available at the lowest possible price - as of now (Feb 2010), we can offer most new books (in-stock or special order) at US Cover Price, which means considerable savings on many books.
Q: Why can't I use my trade credit towards consignment books?
A: Consignment books are usually local authors, for whom we carry books, and offer them through our internet sales channels as well. We charge a tiny commission on each sale to basically cover our credit card fees and online fees for listing their books, and pass the remainder along to the author.
Q: Can someone else use my trade credit with my permission?
A: Yes - if you have a friend or family member who will often use your trade credit, we can add their name to your trade credit account. That way it is obvious to the clerk that they have your permission to use it.
Q: Can someone else use my trade credit without my permission?
A: If someone else gave your phone number and name (basically lying to us), and we didn't know you, it's possible. If you're concerned, just ask us to put a note on your account that no one can use your account unless they have the physical customer card.