Updated November 13, 2013

Opt Out of Junk Mail

How to stop junk mail from coming to your house

Is most of your mail junk? Households average 18 pieces of junk mail per week, and most of those pieces end up in the trash, unopened. Junk mail is a waste of paper and a waste of time to deal with, especially when most of it comes from companies you've never bought anything from and don't want to anytime soon. So how do you get them to stop sending it? Below are some tips help you “opt out” of junk mail.

How to Stop Junk Mail Before It Starts

The best way to opt out of junk mail is to make sure you never start receiving it in the first place.

  • Be careful when and where you give out your address: Companies that get your address through legitimate means – you place an order with them or you ask to be added to their mailing list – often sell their databases of names and addresses to marketing agencies. These marketing agencies then sell the information to other companies, which use them to send out advertisements for their products or services. Your name and address could be sold multiple times, meaning you could end up on the mailing list of a company you’ve never done business with before. This is how junk mail accumulates over time, and why you may get unsolicited credit card applications or letters about insurance offers sent to your home.

    One way to combat junk mail is by not giving out your address more than necessary. This means not participating in contests or sweepstakes, and keeping magazine and catalog subscriptions to a minimum.

  • Tell companies not to sell your name: You can sometimes tell companies up front not to sell your name and address. Each company has a different procedure, but you should be able to find information on how to opt out from marketing databases on the company’s website, sales materials, or order forms.

Opt Out of Junk Mail You're Already Receiving

It’s not possible to prevent all junk mail before you receive it, so it’s important to know what to do to stop receiving junk mail once it arrives in your mailbox.

  • Contact opt-out registries and services: A number of services help consumers control the mail they receive. Below are some of the best ones to register with:

    • OptOutPrescreen.com: This registry is run by the credit reporting agencies to limit the number of pre-approved credit card, loan, and insurance offers consumers receive through the mail.

    • DMAchoice: DMA stands for Direct Marketing Association, which is an organization for businesses that use direct marketing techniques like sending unsolicited (junk) mail. DMAchoice lets consumers select the types of mail they do and do not want to receive from these businesses.

    • Catalog Choice: With this service, you create an account and report unwanted mail as it arrives at your home, to easily opt out of the mailing lists of specific companies.

  • Contact companies directly: A more time-consuming but more effective way to eliminate junk mail is to directly contact some companies to get off their mailing lists. Information about how to stop receiving mail from a company, or at least its phone number, can usually be found on the promotional mail you receive.

None of the above tips will completely stop junk mail, but following all or most of them will drastically reduce the amount of junk mail you find in your mailbox. Keeping your junk mail to a minimal level is a continuous process – just because you get off one distribution list doesn’t mean you won’t find yourself on another one.

More Articles in Money Tips


Articles on Opt Out of Junk Mail

    Littering Statistics

    By Rebecca Lake - Money Tips
    In America alone, more than 250 million tons of trash is produced each year, some of which is discarded as litter along roads, on city streets, in parks and across the nation's waterways. Read on for 23 littering statistics that will blow your mind.

How Much is a Home Security System

A home security system can protect you from burglars and robbers. But how much does a home security system cost?
More Articles in Security






About CreditDonkey®
CreditDonkey is a home security comparison website. We publish data-driven analysis to help you save money & make savvy decisions.

Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed on this page are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.

†Advertiser Disclosure: Many of the card offers that appear on this site are from companies from which CreditDonkey receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). CreditDonkey does not include all companies or all offers that may be available in the marketplace.

*See the card issuer's online application for details about terms and conditions. Reasonable efforts are made to maintain accurate information. However, all information is presented without warranty. When you click on the "Apply Now" button you can review the terms and conditions on the card issuer's website.

CreditDonkey does not know your individual circumstances and provides information for general educational purposes only. CreditDonkey is not a substitute for, and should not be used as, professional legal, credit or financial advice. You should consult your own professional advisors for such advice.