Posted on: September 7, 2009 Posted by: Nicole Harding Comments: 1

With today’s technological advancements and the call to be more environment-friendly, more and more people are taking the initiative to get rid of their paper bills. Paper bills or the old-style junk mail, are just an addition to the growing amount of garbage thrown out and trees torn down for paper. Here’s how to do your part in lessening paper bills and having less things to clean around your house.

Paper Bills

Another way to get rid of mailbox clutter is to go banking online and accessing monthly bills on the internet. Don’t forget to request your bank to opt-out in receiving paper bills. You can do this with credit card issuers, utility providers and insurance companies as well. Automatic debit payments and electronic billing will cut back on the paper bills almost instantly.

How do you pay electronically? There are different ways you can do to get rid of paper bills permanently.

Automatic Debit

You can request your company to auto-debit your bank account every time the bill is due. This isn’t recommended for people who live from paycheck to paycheck or don’t have any backup cash for emergency situations. This is great for the smaller bills that recur every month.

Pay at the Website

You can go to the company website, log on and pay your bill via credit card or debit card. This is usually efficient and free, but you’ll be missing out on centralization and automation in a bank-based payment system. This means you’ll have to log on a lot of websites to pay separate bills. (Learn how to pay bills online)

Online Bill-Pay System

Banks, discount brokerages and independent companies like Yahoo! are all offering online bill payment systems that makes paying your bills so much easier.

There are two ways to go about paying this way: Through an electronic fund transfer (if the provider has it) or an mailed paper check sent automatically for everyone else. Either way, both ways ensure that your bills are paid on time with the minimum of effort.

Another bonus to this system is that the online bill-pay system can actually sync with your Quicken program or Microsoft Money to update and manage your personal finances. Once setup properly, the pay system will automatically update your register, and you just have to check and monitor.

Direct Marketer’s Associations List

The Direct Marketer’s Association (DMA) is responsible for distributing flyers, advertising letters and brochures from different companies. What you can do is to go over to the website to have your name and address placed on the list to have your name removed. The DMA regularly update their list of addresses and are required to remove names of those who request them to be removed.

Removing your name online has a three-year expiry, so you will need to request your name to be removed again after this time period. You can also request your name to be removed via mail, but you will need to include $1.00 check or money order charge for the DMA’s processing fees.

If the addressee of the flyers, advertising letters and brochures are mailed to a deceased person, you can remove their names via the Deceased Do Not Contact Registrar. It has no verification process and has no fees.

Epsilon Abacus Cooperative Mailing List

The Epsilon Abacus Cooperative Mailing List is responsible for sending out catalogues for retail stores and catalogue companies. Epsilon Abacus Cooperative has a pretty scientific way of functioning, relying on the information their merchant members about the the spending habits of the consumers in the list as well as their contact details.To opt out of their mailing list, you can go to the their opt out website and follow the instructions to remove your name from the list. You can also send an email with a request to remove your name. Don’t forget to include your name and address.

Pre-Approved Credit Card Junk Mail

Pre-approved credit card junk mail may make you feel hopeless, but you’re really not. You can access to to stop this junk mail from coming in your inbox. This is a website designed to accept requests to opt-out of firm offers of insurance or credit. Conversely, they are also required to remove your name when you request them to. This removal will last around five years or even so. If you want your name to be removed permanently, you will have to do the mailing option. You will be required to give your contact details, some personal information and social security number.

Flyers, Coupons and Brochures

If you find no use for flyers, coupons and brochures that are sent out with no specific name or personalization, there is still a way to get rid of them from coming.

What you can do is call up the major distributors of these flyers, coupons and brochures and ask them to remove your name from the list.

Magazines and Charities

It’s common for magazines and charities to sell your name and address to marketing companies. You can opt not to be included by telling them that you do not want them to sell, share or trade your contact information with businesses and companies.

Sweepstakes and Prize Drawings

Try to avoid joining sweepstakes and prize drawings. More often than not, these are done to garner as much names and addresses for solicitations in the future. Only join sweepstakes and prize drawings if you have an option to opt-out your name and contact information to companies. You can try calling the following to be removed:

Warranty and Buyer Registration Cards

Many people get fooled into handing out their names and information when filling up warranty and buyer registration comes. Remember that the warranty automatically comes with the purchase of the product, even without filling up the warranty and buyer registration cards. These cards are just a ruse for businesses to get your information to mail solicitations at.

Return to Sender

If the junk mail comes in with labels that read: “Change service requested” or “address service requested”, that means that you can refuse the letter and have it returned to the sender. When returned, the sender will most likely remove you from its list.

To do this, write: “Refused–Return to Sender” or “Return to Sender–Refused by Addressee” and put it on the outgoing mailbox.

Help your environment be cleaner and greener. You’re also doing yourself a service by getting rid of all the mailbox clutter. Good luck.


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