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July 23, 2007

Feeling like you’re getting pushed a little too much by folks intruding by phone or mail? Flex your power a little. Here are a few tips that I think you might find helpful to cut down on various kinds of intrusions, whether you live in Los Gatos, San Jose, or anywhere else in the U.S.:

A few caveats:

These three cut down, but don’t eliminate calls, ads in the mail, entirely. There are a few caveats. The “do not call” list has two exempt groups: charities and politicians. The latter group drives me nuts. My husband and I are both pretty centrist in our views but happen to be registered with different parties. So we get every automated call from every top-level politician imaginable. Last time around, our daughter picked up the call and it was the governator. For weeks she was walking around the house saying, “Hello, this is Ahnowled Svartzeenagger…”  Another time my son got the call and I picked up, not knowing he was there on the line already. I heard, “Mom, I’m having a private conversation with Nancy Pelosi”.  I wish we could “do not call” these guys, but they made themselves exempt.

Second, the Remove from Carrier-Sort Mail will not eliminate all ads (postcards, flyers etc.) but only those sent by bulk mail. Being a Realtor, I have not signed up for this because I want to see what other real estate agents (my competition) are up to!

Third,  the removal of the pre-approved credit card mailings I think is VERY important because of the risk of identity theft (others stealing these offers from your mailbox and applying “for” you, only to take the money and run). When you call, you MUST give your social security number (or if there are two of you who qualify in your home, both call and request separately). I believe it’s good for about 5 years.