With millions of parcels shipped every day from the USPS, it’s amazing that they can keep up with the volume, along with other customer requests.
One ques? Will it be another expense on top of the expensive process of moving? Here is your answer.
Does USPS Charge For Change Of Address?
USPS does charge for a change of address, but the fee is a minimal $1.10. Changing your address and paying the associated fee can be completed online, at USPS.com, or at your local post office in person. Change of address is a widely scammed process that only costs $1.10 – any site charging more is fraudulent.
To learn more about changing your address, how to recognize a change-of-address scam, and for how long USPS will forward your mail after an address change, read on for all you need to know!
How Much Does USPS Charge For Change Of Address?
The only way to change your address is to use the USPS.com site (or visit your local post office), where the fee is a nominal $1.10.
According to MyMove.com, the fee is actually less of a money-making scheme by USPS and more of a fraud safeguard.
By having customers use a credit or debit card with either their old address or their new one attached, it prevents any random stranger from rerouting the mail to themselves.
This is especially important online, where the transaction is completed without the benefit of face-to-face interaction.
How Do You Change Your Address With USPS?
The United States Postal Service makes it easy and convenient to change your address on their website – you don’t have to leave the comfort of your new or old home.
Navigate to USPS.com and find the header for “Quick Tools.”
Click it, and a drop-down menu will appear. The “Change My Address” tool is on the bottom row, left-hand side.
This link takes you to the official change of address form, where you will fill in your contact information, answer a few questions, and input your old and new addresses.
If you have a family where everyone shares the same last name, you can file one “lump” Change of Address form.
Otherwise, every person in your household with a different last name must submit a separate form.
If you prefer not to submit a change of address online, you can also visit your local post office and fill out a PS Form 3575.
MyMove.com recommends submitting your change of address at least two weeks before moving day.
That way, you can ensure that USPS has updated their files by the time you are in your new residence.
Expect USPS to send a Move Validation Letter to your old address and a Customer Notification Letter and Welcome Kit to your new one.
Does USPS Notify Sender Of Address Change?
According to a letter carrier of 30 years, USPS will notify some mailers when there has been a change of address.
However, that is a special service that a mailer must pay for, so it’s probably best to assume that most are not going to pony up the extra cash.
Thus, the default for USPS is not to notify the sender of a change of address; rather, the onus is on the person moving to notify all important people and entities that they are changing addresses.
How Long Does Change Of Address Last?
The Change of Address tool from USPS is temporary; they will not be forwarding your mail forever. Rather, First-Class mail will reach you this way for 12 months.
There are also different timeframes for different types of mail.
Priority Mail Express and Retail Ground will also be forwarded for a year, but any periodicals you might receive – magazines, for example – are only good for 60 days.
Marketing mail, like advertisements or catalogs, do not get forwarded at all (although they always seem to find us).
If there is a piece of marketing mail that you’d like to keep receiving at your new address, you will have to “specify forwarding instructions” with USPS.
What Happens If You Forget To Submit A USPS Change Of Address?
With everything that comes with a move, perhaps the Change of Address slipped your mind.
Once your mailbox is full and it is obvious no one is collecting the mailpieces, the postal carrier will bring the mail back to the post office and leave you a notification to come get it.
Approximately 10 days after that, if you haven’t come to claim it, what can be sent back will be; anything that cannot be sent back or forwarded will get thrown out.
Why Did You Get Charged $40 To Change Your Address?
The Change of Address scam world is thriving. Note that the official – and only – way to change your address is through the USPS, and it costs $1.10.
Anything more than that is fraudulent.
These scam sites appear when people Google “Change my address” or similar. The sites have misleading titles, like this below:
Note how the one result has even titled itself “USPS Change of Address” to fool the reader into thinking it’s affiliated with the postal service (the URL indicates that it is not).
Sites like these may then charge $1 upfront, then use the card information you provided to charge another $40-60 (or even more) later.
USPS does have a $60 charge associated with the Change of Address, though.
Their site indicates that it is not USPS policy to issue more than one Change of Address confirmation letter, except in special cases.
In these special cases, the additional letter costs $60.