In a recent post, I covered how to organize mail and paperwork. What I didn’t highlight was how to eliminate all of that annoying junk mail from even arriving in your mailbox. Getting rid of junk mail can provide some pretty big benefits.
How to Stop Junk Mail in 5 Steps
There are five main steps you can take to eliminate most junk mail. These quick and easy steps will eliminate most of your junk mail. The first three steps literally take just a few minutes and will eliminate most junk mail.
Step 1: De-list your Name from the DMA
The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) provides research and advocacy for direct mailers. Additionally, they provide a service for consumers to opt out receiving direct mail from each of four possible categories: credit offers, catalogs, magazine offers, and other (includes bank and retail).
To opt out of receiving mail from these categories, you can create a login or download a printable form to send in (along with $1) at the DMA’s dmachoice.org site.
Step 2: De-list your Name from the Abacus Catalog Alliance
Opt out by:
- email: send full name (including middle initial), current address, previous address (if not in current for 6 months) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- mail: send same info to: Epsilon Data Services, P.O. Box 1478, Broomfield, CO 80038
- phone: (888) 780-3869
Step 3: De-list your Name with the Credit Bureaus
Go to optoutprescreen.com or call 888-5-OPTOUT. This is a joint venture by the Equifax, TransUnion, Experian, and Innovis credit bureaus. Opting out will remove your name from credit and insurance solicitations for 5 years, or permanently, if you choose.
Step 4: Respect your Name
Whenever signing up for any service, making a donation, or whatever it may be, let people know that you do not want to receive solicitations or want your information shared at all. Be very explicit about this request.
Step 5: Be Persistent
The previous four steps will eliminate most junk mail, but not all. To get rid of all junk mail, it will take some persistence and patience on your part. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone and call the number on the mail to ask that they never reach you again and to find out how they got your information in the first place
A little effort will go a long ways towards de-cluttering and minimizing your impact on the environment.
The Benefits of Stopping Junk Mail
Why eliminate junk mail?
- Simplifying and de-cluttering your life is refreshing.
- You’re preventing yourself from getting into future economic troubles by signing up for something you don’t need
- You’re preventing the possibility of identity theft & mail fraud that may come with stolen mail.
- You are helping the planet by cutting back on carbon dioxide emissions and save trees. The amount of junk mail per household each year adds up to two trees and 92 pounds of CO2 for production and delivery. On a national scale, that’s 100 million trees and the equivalent of 3 million cars worth of pollution.
Junk Mail Discussion:
- What tips do you have for getting rid of junk mail?
- Approximately how many pieces of junk mail do you get in a day, week?