Mail slot stuffed with junk mail

Less mail, fewer calls

I hate junk mail, you hate junk mail. Nearly everyone hates junk mail. You know who LIKES junk mail? Advertisers! Who still, apparently, make money by sending unrequested stuff to you by the bushel.

Here are a few of my favorite resources for getting OFF those lists. And one for robocalls, too, which are just as annoying as paper clutter!

  1. DMA Choice This service costs $2. I know! It’s possibly the only service in the world that costs only $2. They’ll put you into a database that direct mailers use to purge their lists. You’ll stay in their database for 10 years, then you have to re-register. 

This organization does a few other things as well. You can register your deceased relative! If you’ve ever been the forwarding recipient of a no-longer-with-us-on-this-plane-of-existence human’s mail, you know that it can take YEARS to get them off of mailing list. Ridiculous! But true.

You can also register up to three email addresses for similar purging. And your phone number! Lots of ways to reduce the noise.

I signed up several years ago and it made a huge difference to the incoming tide of paper.

  1. Valpack Do you get that annoying blue envelope full of coupons all the damned time? Click on the link to remove yourself from their mailing list.
  2. Catalog Choice Similar to DMA, but specific to catalogs. I rarely receive a catalog unless I’ve ordered from a company that subsequently sends them. I’m pretty good about stopping those, as well.

Every catalog will contain the company’s toll-free customer service number. Call! They’ll generally ask for your account number or customer number which appears on the back of the catalog near your name and address in order to remove you from their list.

I know it’s a pain, but do yourself a favor and call as soon as the catalog hits your mailbox. Your future self will thank you.

  1. Do Not Call List Run by the Federal Trade Commission. Opt out of at least some of those super annoying robocalls! Most of the major carriers have their own spam filters – look up your account online to see if you can tweak them to make them even stronger.
  2. Credit bureaus OMG do you get offers for credit cards ALL THE TIME? You can opt out! Here’s a toll-free number: 1-888-5-OPTOUT (1-888-567-8688) that will prevent having pre-approved credit offers sent to you for two years.

You can also notify the Big Three credit bureaus that you do not want them to disclose personal information about you for promotional purposes (i.e., junk mail). Write to:

Equifax, Inc., Options
PO Box 740123
Atlanta, GA 30374-0123

Experian, Consumer Opt Out
701 Experian Pkwy.
Allen, TX 75013

TransUnion Opt Out Request
PO Box 505
Woodlyn, PA 19094

Include your full name, address, social security number, date of birth, and be sure to sign written requests.