A head gasket leak is NOT common. Its an indicator that the car was most likely redlined, or overheated. Overheating is the most common reason for a head gasket leak.
The engine is salvagable. You just need to have the Head inspected for cracks and planed down. The cost is usually high because of the labour involved. A complete job can run 8-10 hours.
You state your broke, but your willing to buy a used engine to drop in? An engine swap will be the same cost as fixing the head gasket. You could sell the car as is, but you would be taking a huge loss. As an enthusiat, the original engine with all maintence records is more appealing to me then a car with a swapped engine. That indicates to me that the car was mistreated, probably driven hard, and not taken care of. People want cars that were taken care of properly. I recommend fixing the car properly.
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