I LOVE books. I mean, I really LOVE books. Before I discovered the interwebs and all the temptations therein, I used to read 3 or more books per week. These days, I don’t read as much, but I still squeeze it in as often as I can. Because I’m thrifty (or cheap – that works too!), I get a lot of them from the library.
I’ve written before about my overshopping problem in my Costco Post . Well, believe me, I’m even worse in a library because everything is FREE! I usually am staggering under the weight of the books I check out. Many of them are CD’s and audio books, which tend to have higher late fees. I usually get several extras in case the narrator’s voice is annoying, or it’s a boring book – I am NOT one of those people who will keep plowing through a bad book. If it doesn’t grab me in the first few chapters > NEXT.
I’m a super busy girl (Adrian’s CRAZY Life wasn’t chosen by accident), so if I’m not careful, I can rack up a ton of library fines for all these books and CD’s. I used to have regular $10-$15 library fees – yikes!
So I’ve come up with a clever way to minimize these fees. I just put my technology skills to use. These days, most libraries will send you a reminder Email about 3 days before your items are due. I’ve set up that Email so it comes in on a priority basis in my overstuffed inbox (don’t get me started on THAT!). I’ve also got the library app right on my phone, preloaded with my login info. So, the second I get that Email, I pop right over there and renew EVERYTHING for another three weeks. It won’t always let you if someone else has requested it, but I can usually renew about 95% of my stuff.
I know I’m not going to keep most of the books for another three weeks (except for the ones I’m actually reading!), but what that does is it gives me a little cushion to get over to the library and return them. If I return them within the 3 days, no harm done, the renewal just expires. But if it takes me 4-5 days to get over to the library, I’ve skipped the fines for those extra days. I figure this little tip saves me about $30-$40 a year in unnecessary library fines.
Hope this helps you!