15 Things You Never Knew You Could Borrow to Save Money


By Jamie Novak | Reader’s Digest

Stop wasting money and cluttering up your home with single-use purchases when you could borrow them instead for a small fee or absolutely free.


Chess pieces on wood board

Beyond lending books, your local library may offer a treasure trove of entertainment. Don’t miss the chance to take home items such as movies, video games, language-learning courses, current magazines, board games, American Girl dolls, and even telescopes like this Celestron Travel Scope—all for the price of your library card (which is free for local residents). Here are more ways to save money without feeling the pinch.

E-books and ’zines

Black ereader with retro glasses on wooden table

Save money and reclaim bookcase space by reading e-books. If your friend owns an Amazon Kindle, she can lend you e-books by clicking “Loan this book” from the product page of the book you want to read. Once she enters your email address, you’ll receive an email notification allowing you to accept the loaned book for up to 14 days. If you have a Prime membership, log on to the Kindle Lending Library and borrow a wide range of e-books at no cost. If you don’t have a Prime membership, you can borrow that, too! Ask a Prime member to add you to his or her Amazon Household; then accept the emailed offer to include you. You can also forgo the messy magazine pile and instead “check out” your favorite magazine as an online ’zine and enjoy it on your e-reader.


The spines of books. The view from the top

Taking a college course? Skip the pricey textbook purchase—some basic texts can cost more than $230—and opt to borrow a book instead. Check out AmazonChegg, and Campus Book Rental to see if they have your required books available. Even if you know you’ll want your own copy to highlight and take notes in, you can begin by borrowing the textbook until you are certain that you’ll continue in the class. If novels are on your reading list, here’s how you can snag some bestselling books for $5 or less.

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