Eliminating Junk Mail and Telemarketing Calls

May 7, 2015, Written By John H. Oldshue

The taxes are done and school is almost out for the summer. It’s a great time to do a little spring cleaning, and one of the easiest ways is to reduce your amount of junk mail, credit card offers and telemarketing calls. This can be a surprisingly easy thing to do.

You can stop credit card offers from being mailed to you at OptOutPrescreen.com. This is a service of all three credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion) and allows you to opt out for five years by just visiting the website and completing a short form. This takes about two minutes to complete. If you want to permanently opt out of credit card offers, you will need to print out a form and mail it in. This a not only a great idea to reduce clutter in your mailbox, but also makes you more secure since pre-approved credit card offers are big targets for identity thieves.

You can stop most telemarketing calls by registering at the National Do Not Call Registry. This is a free service set up by the FCC to reduce the number of telemarketing calls you get at home and on your cellphone. To register a phone number, visit DoNotCall.gov and fill out the short form which should take about a minute. You should see a reduction in telemarketing calls in about 30 days.

You can stop a great deal of your unwanted junk mail by visiting dmachoice.org and getting off the mailing lists from members of the Direct Marketing Association. You can stop your mail from any or all of three different categories: catalog offers, magazine offers and other junk mail. You can select which organizations in those categories you want to eliminate or just opt out of the whole category. It may take up to three months for the change to take effect. The Direct Marketing Association claims to represent about 80% of direct marketers, so you could see a large reduction in your junk mail by using this service. It takes about two minutes to complete the online form.

In addition, you can request companies to remove your name and email address from their customer lists. Many times, they sell or rent this information to other companies. If you are getting a lot of email from stores where you have made an online transaction, you have likely been added to their email list. Look for the “unsubscribe” icon at the bottom of most every emailed sales offer. In fact, when you are making a purchase, you have a chance to eliminate these offers from ever coming your way by checking a box with that information.

The information contained within this article was accurate as of May 7, 2015. For up-to-date
information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website.