Reddit Gold: “How to avoid getting spam mail?”

Reddit Gold highlights the most useful and educational content on Reddit as found on r/AutoBestOf.

Today’s post is from u/ciabattabing16 who answers the question: “How to avoid getting spam mail?”

Hijacking your comment to spread some tips. I HATE mail and I hate my mailman, we’ve had an ongoing war for years. To help combat him, I’ve worked hard to avoid getting mail. I’ve done the following things, many which are probably not new, but I rarely get mail now:

  • https://www.catalogchoice.org/ – make an account, make a profile for your address, and make a profile entry for every person that gets mail at the address. Including all those people that used to live there and still get mail. You can un-subscribe from mail that comes in under their name, and it’ll either automatically remove the subscription, or, it’ll tell you what to call/email to get unsubscribed, and they add new vendors frequently.
  • Freeze your credit – Equifax, Transunion, Experian, the big 3. Also include ChexSystems and Innovis. The big 3 will be the biggest bang for your effort. You get a pin and a user/pw, and you can unfreeze immediately for a period you specify to open a credit card, get a cable/fios account, get a store credit/financing deal, and then it relocks after. This prevents pre-approvals and a whole host of other random mailers.
  • DMA choice – http://dmachoice.thedma.org/ – lets you officially opt out from some mailers/services
  • Valpak unsubscribe – https://www.valpak.com/coupons/show/mailinglistsuppression
  • Yellow Pages opt out – https://www.yellowpagesoptout.com/ (your local/regional yellow/white pages also will have opt outs, you just have to search for them) (These aren’t USPS but they’re annoying)
  • Washington Post “Post Marketplace” mailers/packs (these go to every house even if you’ve never been a paper customer…) – Call 202-334-7730, it’s a voicemail. Leave your address. They’ll opt you out. This one seemed like shady bullshit when I finally found it, but damn if it didn’t work.
  • National “Do Not Mail” list – http://www.directmail.com/mail_preference/
  • Redplum mailer unsubscribe – https://www.redplum.com/tools/direct-mail-preferences
  • RTS – Return to sender. Scrawl it on anything that’s not marked ‘pre-paid’ and put it back in outgoing. Sometimes this is the only way to get mail to stop arriving…especially if it’s mail for former residents. People at the other end need to update their addresses.
  • Mark your name on your mailbox with a label-maker – if the name isn’t on the mailbox, sometimes the mail is automatically sent back (my weekend mail lady is much nicer)

And to help further police what mail is coming to your house, or, not coming to your house if your mailman hates you, the free Informed Delivery service from USPS – https://informeddelivery.usps.com/box/pages/intro/start.action

This lets you get an emailed photo of every piece of mail coming to you (they’ve been scanning them since the 70’s, but now you get an email of said scan). You can report mail that isn’t delivered and keep an eye of what’s coming or what you’ve ‘missed’ when your mail is on hold.

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