Antonio & Alexia's Blog

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Let's save some trees together... Here is how to get rid of Junk Mail once and for all!

It happens every weekday, the religious routine of going to the mailbox and sorting out what's important and what is not. Recently I lost an invoice, did not pay on time and was charged a late fee. No matter what I said they told me they had sent the bill on time. I guess I lost it in the pile of junk mail I put in the recycling bin. I use several credit cards, purchase products on line and I am a registered voter and a typical taxpayer. All those entities regularly collect information about me and my family and very happily sell that information to marketing companies who in turn sell those lists to other companies so they advertise they products or services to me on a regular basis. 

No matter what I tried I used to receive approximately 650 pounds of paper per year which is what the average person receives. I am only counting MY share, my wife receives catalogs from almost every store in the USA! Can you imagine how many trees will fall because someone thinks I need this stuff? Each year 19 BILLION catalogs are mailed to USA consumers. The environmental impact to our planet is enormous.

I now receive only about 20% of the junk I used to receive. I went to http://www.catalogchoice.org/  this service allows you to opt out of receiving paper catalogs. It works like magic, you write the customer number, your name and zip code and that is it. I also decided to start sending back the mail I did not request.

As I open my mail I look for a very special piece of mail that comes inside, I look for the envelopes that read: FIRST CLASS MAIL -"POSTAGE WILL BE PAID BY ADDRESSEE" without taking my name out, I simply stuff every piece of paper that come in that envelope into the "POSTAGE PAID' envelope, tongue it out and put it by my desk and when the pile is big enough, I take them to the post office and mail them back.

Postage Paid Envelope

  I learned that the company that send that mailing will pay by weight the return of the envelope, that is why I even send back the envelope in which it come. The result: after a few weeks of doing that for all the mail in our house, we were taken off their list and we do not get any more solicitations by mail. By using less paper, increasing recycled content, and making other improvements, we can save wood, water and energy, and cut pollution and solid waste. 

By the way, the companies that send these unsolicited offers have to dispose of personal information in a proper manner, so don't be afraid of leaving your name and address in there, they need to know who you are, you are costing them money by returning their mail, that is why they will take you off their lists. If there is one catalog you miss, they will gladly start sending it again if you request it. I had to do that for my wife.

The Realtors In Motion       Antonio & Alexia Cardenas   

                  "The Realtors In Motion" 

         CRS, GRI, E-Pro Certified. SFR (Short Sales, Forclosure Resource) Serving the east shores of the San Francisco Bay, Alameda county: specially the following cities: Castro Valley, San Leandro, San Lorenzo, Hayward, Oakland, Pleasanton & Dublin.

                  Visit us on line at:

www.listedbyantonio.com or call (510) 326-4263

                     Call us, We'll come and TANGO with you!

Comment balloon 15 commentsAntonio & Alexia Cardenas • October 07 2008 11:38PM

Comments

Yes I admit a ton of  trees are wasted due to JUNK MAIL!

Thanks

Tom Davis

World Class Delaware Realtor

Posted by Tom Davis, FREE Delaware Homes Search!, $$ Save $$ - Find Homes! Delaware Realtor (Harrington ERA,DE Homes For Sale, $$ Save $$ Buy Today !) over 11 years ago

Great idea.  Thanks for the blog.  What was that guy's comment.  A period.  ?

Posted by Jeff Rogers (retired) over 11 years ago

Antonio and Alexia- So you don't do any real estate farming? I like junk mail. Some of the greatest copywriting and direct mail lessons I have learned have been from junk mail. And we get a lot of listings from farming our niches with direct mail postcard and letter campaigns. I have also found my gardener and my landscaper through direct mail, my nail salon and my favorite salad place. I would not have known had I not received their ads in the mail. Katerina

Posted by Katerina Gasset, Get It Done For Me Virtual Services (Get It Done For Me Virtual Services ) over 11 years ago

I really like this idea, Antonio.  I just may give it a try myself.  Thanks for doing the post.

Posted by Dave Hamill, Prescott, Arizona Real Estate (EXIT Realty Legacy) over 11 years ago

Jeff, you are welcome, this idea works wondefully. I agree with you... I cannot comment on a period.

Nestor & katerina. I agree with you about the good mail, the one that actually provides a service, I am against those credit card solicitations, and bank offers week after week.

Posted by Antonio & Alexia Cardenas, "The Realtors In Motion" (Alameda County - San Leandro, CA.) over 11 years ago

What a nice idea to get rid of all of this junk.  It just overwhelms us and wastes trees too.

Posted by Christine Donovan, Broker/Attorney 714-319-9751 DRE01267479 - Costa M (Donovan Blatt Realty) over 11 years ago

Got a way to get rid of junk phone calls?  I can't believe the phone solicitations at my office, home and even cell phone!  Desparate times, I guess.

Please remember me if you learn of anyone moving to "The OC".

Best regards.

Michael Caruso, Broker ABR ABRM CRB CRS GRI

2007 President, Orange County Association of Realtors

Posted by Michael A. Caruso (Surterre Properties) over 11 years ago

Michael, One way to deal with junk calls is to put them on hold... I have gotten rid of some of them by doing just that. Hi! please hold... I'll be right back... then put them on hold. If they are on hold, they will not bother me... I have them on hold... they will not boder YOU.

Antonio

Posted by Antonio & Alexia Cardenas, "The Realtors In Motion" (Alameda County - San Leandro, CA.) over 11 years ago

I love that you arnd our wife are ballroom dancers!  anyway, I am with you.  I am tiered of the big fat phonebooks that get left on my porch too.  How do we get rid of those? Thanks for coming by my party and for the flowers.  I am so sorry you were disapointed in the "birthday suit" :o)

Posted by Cristal Drake, Realtor - Fullerton Real Estate (Prudential California Realty) over 11 years ago

This I like ... this is simple and easy to do ... now if only there was a way to do it with all the junk that comes with the local paper (it seems it is cheaper to send flyers with the paper than mailing them)

Posted by Kathy Clulow, Trusted For Experience - Respected For Results (RE/MAX All-Stars Realty Inc. Brokerage) over 11 years ago

Antonio,

An unintended consequence of doing away with junk mail would be the demise of the postal service.  No one sends letter mail any more.  We just email. 

Mike in Tucson

Posted by Mike Jones, Mike Jones NMLS 223495 (SUNSTREET MORTGAGE, LLC (BK-0907366, NMLS 145171) ) over 11 years ago

Cristal, I use the phone books for some of my projects with paper matche, just take a look at my Halloween decorations this year. The main horse was made with paper matche... most of it from old phone books.

Kathy, check the link above, and see what I do with newpaper.

Mike, does anyone still send 'snail mail'...?

 

Posted by Antonio & Alexia Cardenas, "The Realtors In Motion" (Alameda County - San Leandro, CA.) over 11 years ago

But using my junk mail from 2007, I saved over $1,000 by using the coupons, and got 17 postage stamps, lots and lots of free pens, and $62 in one and two-dollar bills.

I just open junk mail during commercials or when Active Rain is taking a long time to post a blog, ending with the ubiquitous Proxy Error.

Those who don't want their junk mail can send it to me, unopened. No fair taking all the goodies out first.

Posted by Russel Ray, San Diego Business & Marketing Consultant & Photographer (Russel Ray) over 11 years ago

Russel, I agree with you that there are good pieces of mail, I am not against all of them, just the ones with credit card solicitations and pre-approved offers and personal stuff. I am not big on coupons, but I guess there is value on those. Thanks for your reply.

Antonio

Posted by Antonio & Alexia Cardenas, "The Realtors In Motion" (Alameda County - San Leandro, CA.) over 11 years ago

Antonio - WOW - That  was Amazing ... What an enormous amount of work and all with recycled material.

"... I use the phone books for some of my projects with paper matche, just take a look at my Halloween decorations this year. The main horse was made with paper matche... most of it from old phone books."

Posted by Kathy Clulow, Trusted For Experience - Respected For Results (RE/MAX All-Stars Realty Inc. Brokerage) over 11 years ago

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