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Published on January 3rd, 2008 | by Stephanie Evans


5 Simple Ways to Stop Junk Mail

Interested in reducing the influx of junk mail you receive every day?  Start off a fresh New Year by reducing the junk mail waste stream flowing into your home.  The average American household receives unsolicited junk mail in the equivalent of 1.5 trees every year, and 44% of that is thrown away unopened!

If you don’t have precious time to waste opening junk mail, follow these helpful tips and visit the resources links to radically reduce the avalanche of paper that goes straight from your mailbox to the landfill . . .

  • To have your address removed from national mailing lists, write to the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) and register with their MailReduce Waste - Stop Junk Mail from Flowing! Preference Service.  The service is free and registration lasts for five years.  Register online or send them a postcard containing information from the Web site ($1 charge). GreenDimes, a DMA affiliate, monitors unwanted catalogs and mailings to ensure that your name does not appear on any lists.  Better yet, they will plant 10 trees for a small fee.  Visit their registration page to sign-up or the FAQ to learn more.
  • To minimize the event of  being added to new mailing lists, be sure to write “No mailing lists” next to your name whenever you order something by mail, enter a contest, subscribe to a magazine, or give out your name and address for any other situations that could possibly yield unwanted solicitations.
  • To stop the onslaught of credit card offers, call 1-888-5-OPTOUT (1-888-567-8688), a line that operates 24 hours a day.  A recorded message will ask for your name, address, telephone number, and social security number.  While  credit bureaus already have access to everyone’s SSN’s, the claim here is that they request the numbers to confirm that you are who you say you are.
  • If you want to stop the flow of unwanted catalogs, call the customer service number of the organization or business and request that your name be removed from their mailing list.  You can also request mailing list removal via e-mail by visiting the company’s Web site, or by letter or postcard.
  • Junk mail doesn’t always just come to your mailbox.  You can reduce the number of telephone solicitations you receive by registering online at the National DO NOT CALL Registry Web site.  To cut down on the junk email you receive, register at the Consumer Assistance section of the DMA Web site.

As you register for services that allow you to opt out of receiving junk mail, also consider enrolling family members who are similarly inundated with piles of unwanted ads and catalogues.  Register their names at the same time, and give those you care about a breather from all that junk!
Article Contributors: Julie Reid

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