So in order to put a stop to mounds of junk mail from taking over our house, I have adopted a certain practice when it comes to dealing with our mail.
As SOON as I remove the mail from the box, I sort it.
One pile for obvious junk that includes no personal information (unwanted ads, flyers, anything addressed to “Current Resident”), one pile for “I need to look through this when I get a second” (includes magazines, grocery ads, personal mail), and one pile for bills and credit/insurance offers. I recycle all unwanted ads, return envelopes, and “Current Resident” offers immediately – why let them sit around and invoke an OCD meltdown? Yes, I’m prone to having these – just ask my husband. That step alone has prevented many a meltdown.
Then there’s the dreaded bills and credit card/insurance offers pile. I have opted for an easier and subsequently, a greener lifestyle by having the majority of our monthly billing statements emailed to us. There are a few that I still get, though, for quick reference purposes – utilities and the mortgage are the main ones. I file those away so if I need to see them quickly, I just pull out the file. Easy peasy.
The other part of that pile is the evil credit card and insurance offers. My most hated offer is from American Express which is what prompted me to take action and make this post. They send, on average, 2 packages to my husband per week offering credit cards. When I say packages, I mean multiple inserts with his name and address printed all over the place. This means, I have to take apart 2 of these packages per week and shred anything with our information on it. And that’s just American Express. My shredder can’t handle it – more like I can’t handle it anymore. I see this as one of the biggest time wasters I encounter. Soooooo….
I found a solution. I actually, in a fit of fury, decided to call American Express and tell them where to mail their offers to. I was ready for some harsh words. And then, out of nowhere (actually, it was at the very bottom of page 1 of 16), I spotted the answer:
You can choose to stop receiving “prescreened” offers of credit by calling toll-free 1-888-567-8688.
For more information about prescreened offers, please see the PRESCREEN & OPT-OUT NOTICE in the accompanying Terms and Conditions.
“Has this always been here?” I said. No one answered of course, but I really wasn’t expecting them to either.
I frantically called the number and followed the prompts to remove both my name and my husband’s from this evil list. It did take about 5 minutes for each of us and I definitely do recommended keying in your information rather than letting the system attempt to figure out what you’re saying, but in the end, it worked.
We will not receive any offers for 5 years. This, of course, does not include offers from companies we already have cards with, and it does take up to 7 business days for this news to trickle down to the mass mailers, but I don’t mind.
So now I’m curious, has anyone else opted-out of credit card offers? And if not, do you plan to now that you know how?