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Borrowing Materials

Library book drop at the Barkley Haggen

You may check out up to 50 items on your library card, with restrictions on some items, as noted in the table below. Library materials have a loan period of three weeks, two weeks or one week; see the summary below. We also allow extended vacation loans; please ask at the Checkout Desk.

You can reserve items and manage your account through our online catalog.

Materials may be renewed twice. There are no renewals for items which have holds. You may renew items online, with LARK telephone messaging at 360-312-9037 (have your card # handy), or by contacting us by phone.

The Library reserves the right to limit the number of items checked out.

Materials may be returned to any  Bellingham Public Library location or Connection, any branch of the Whatcom County Library System, or a Community Drop Box.

Overdue, Lost and Damaged Materials

There is a two-day grace period on all items. After the two-day grace period, the fine rates are as follows:

Library materials not returned within 60 days will automatically be converted to lost, and the borrower will be charged the replacement cost for each item.

Borrowers are responsible for the replacement costs of any lost or damaged materials.  The library does not accept replacement copies for lost or damaged items.  A $5 non-refundable processing fee will be applied for each lost or damaged item.  This applies to all materials on both Adult and Youth accounts.

Uncollected fines or fees of $50 or more are referred to Unique Management, a national collection agency that works with libraries to resolve outstanding balances.

Loan Periods

(per item)
Books 3 weeks* yes -- $10
New Books 3 weeks* yes 10 $10
Paperbacks 3 weeks* yes -- $5
Magazines 3 weeks* yes 10 $5
CDs 3 weeks* yes 20 $10
Playaways 3 weeks yes -- $10
Books on CD 3 weeks* yes 10 $10
DVDs 2 weeks yes 10 $10
Children's DVDs 2 weeks yes 10 $5
Children's CDs 3 weeks yes 10 $5
Preschool Theme Kits and
Early Literacy Kits
3 weeks yes 2 $5
Book Club Kits 38 days** no 3 $10

There is a 50¢ charge to adults for holds not picked up.

You may not renew an item if it is requested by someone else.

* 2 week loan period for items with multiple hold requests.
† 1 week loan period for items with hold requests
** from scheduled pick-up day; no grace period on Book Club Kits

How to Make Payments

Payments for library fines and fees may be made in the following ways:

In Person with cash, check, debit or credit card

Central Library
210 Central Avenue, Bellingham
Monday - Tuesday 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Wednesday - Saturday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

By Phone with debit or credit card

(360) 778-7323 press "2"
Monday - Friday 10 a.m. -5 p.m.

By Mail with check

Bellingham Public Library
Bellingham, WA 98227-9710

Managing your Account (for yourself or your family)

Want an easy way to keep track of what’s due, overdue or ready for pickup? Check out Library Elf.

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