Life in the city means people move a lot.
When you move into a new place, you eventually get mail addressed to the previous tenant. Usually, it is just a catalog or a flyer, not a big deal, those can be tossed in the recycling bin (or you can call and remove your address from their mailing list and keep a big spreadsheet of what companies you contacted and when to make sure you don’t ever receive another Soft Surroundings catalog again…but that’s just me).
One way to combat this on your own end is to fill out an official change of address form with the U.S. Postal Service. That will make sure all of your mail gets to you and not the new tenants of your old abode.
Please, spare them from having to do what’s next.
Since being in our new place about 6 weeks, we have received tons of the previous tenant’s mail, and it is not just the person who lived in our unit last. I counted 6 different names on the below pieces of mail.
These important pieces of mail, such as bank and retirement savings, cannot just be tossed in the recycling bin since that is actually a crime, so DON’T DO THAT.
But what do you do if six different people who don’t live in your unit, let alone your building, are getting mail at your address?
First, keep everything, besides the junk flyers or anything addressed to “So and So or Current Resident.” Those can be recycled, or do as I do and keep the Bed, Bath and Beyond coupons. Then, use a permanent marker and write on each piece:
“Return to Sender, Not at This Address”
Now put them back in the mail to be dealt with. So far, I have only received an Architectural Digest back in the mail, so I am going to try again.
See below for some other tips and tricks, such as marking out barcodes, to keep someone else’s mail from crowding your mailbox when all you are looking forward to is a card from your mom.
- Lifehacker: How Can I Stop Getting Mail Addressed to Someone Else?
- Citylab: How to Stop Getting a Previous Tenant’s Mail Over and Over Again
- Business Insider: Throwing away someone else’s mail is a felony — here’s how to get rid of it legally