Just great! It has been a week since I have gone to pickup my mail at my mailbox. I get the key and trek to the central spot in the complex to get my mail and inside my 4" x 4" X 10" slot is 100 pounds worth of mail that requires pliers to pull out because the box is so jammed. How the mailperson stuffs the mail in there is beyond me.
I usually take a hand truck with me to cart the load back to the kitchen table. After spending an hour sifting through the weekly ads, mail for previous tenants and the endless batch of unwanted and unsolicited credit card offers I find one or two pieces of mail that do matter to me. Like Grandma's Xmas card from two years ago and that invitation to my ex-best friends' wedding. (Guy is my ex-friend because he did not invite me to his wedding. Oh, well).
For most of the junk mail, there is not much we can do. As much as you plead with the mail carrier not to put the Pollo Loco circulars and the Furniture going out of business sales flyer, they have to jam your mailbox with all pieces of mail that are yours or more frequent than not, others. You know their motto: "Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds."
I wish one day they add to their motto, "Only your mail and not your neighbors, intact and within a reasonable hour"
Usually, of the 100 pounds, 99 of them go straight into the recycle bin. The remaining pound mostly involves those unwanted, unsolicited credit card offers. To deal with them, I first open them, then throw into the recycle bin all of the pieces that do not contain any sensitive personal information. I then take the offer itself with name, address and sensitive information upstairs to the shredder to make confetti out of it. I should charge the credit companies for the work I perform on their behalf. Never thought going through the mail was so much work.
I actually looked at one of the offers and discovered that there is a way to STOP the onslaught of the unwanted and unsolicited credit car offers. You have the option to OPT OUT by contacting the credit bureaus. There are two ways to contact them (Equifax, Experian, Innovis, TransUnion) and OPT out of receiving prescreened unwanted, unsolicited credit car offers. I am still wondering how the hell did I OPT IN to begin with?
The first method is via phone at 1-888-5-OPT-OUT (1-888-567-8688). Calling the 888 number is quite cool because it showcases phone technology and voice recognition software. You basically have a conversation with a computer, punch some numbers like your Social Security number and date of birth and in about 3 minutes the "operator" lets you know that you are done and in a weeks time, in the mail, you will receive a form that you complete and send back to OPT you out forever.
The second option is to go online to https://www.optoutprescreen.com/opt_form.cgi and fill out the form. You can then print it and mail back to be opt out forever.
There are two flavors of Opting Out. The first is an "electronic" opt out that is good for five years. With this step, there is no need to mail anything back. But if you want to be Opt Out PERMENANTLY then you have to mail back the form.
It will still take some time for the process to take hold before all unsolicited and unwanted credit card offers seize. It can take a few months for the pre-OPT out solicitations to cycle through to completion. It does not mean that you will never receive an offer from a credit card company. Some use other methods of prescreening you and you will still get some. But by being out of the grasp of the big four credit bureaus you can have the hope of reducing the amount.
At minimum, you can take some control over the credit bureaus misuse of your credit history. At the same time, less offers circling around reduces your risk for identity theft. It will also reduce the number of offers you get from other companies that pre-screen like insurance companies.rnrnI am sure you all have seen the Capital One commercials that end their hilarity with, "What's in your wallet". I do not mind seeing and hearing them on TV but I can answer them that after Opting OUT,
"You are not in my wallet and hopefully soon, you will not be in my mailbox either".
Un Guey de GDL y LA y USC with information to share.