Moving is one of the most stressful situations a person can go through. Coordinating movers, asking family and friends for help, the financial burden that goes into the whole process, and wondering if you forgot something are all part of the headache that is moving. You also have to make sure you change your address with United State Postal Service (USPS) so that all mail sent to your old address gets forwarded to your new address.
There are things to consider when determining how to change your address with USPS. The first is how to make that change with USPS. You’ll also consider when is the best time to change your address with USPS. There are minor cost considerations, and some other aspects you’ll need to keep in mind. Below, we lay out all the considerations so you’ll know what to do.
Ways to Change of Address with USPS
There are two ways you can do a Change of Address (COA) with USPS:
- Online: visit moversguide.usps.com and complete the change of address form.
- In Person: visit any post office and ask for the PS Form 3575. Fill it out and hand it back or drop it in the mailbox.
There is currently no option to change your address over the phone with USPS.
Is there a charge to change your address with USPS?
To do a Change of Address online, there is a non-refundable $1.10 identiy validation fee required to process your request. Most major credit/debit cards are accepted, but prepaid and gift cards are not. The $1.10 identity validation fee is a one-time charge, so be careful when using other sites other than the official moversguide.usps.com website to update your address as you may fall victim to a scam.
There is no fee required when you file your change of address in person via the PS Form 3575.
When Should you Change your Address with USPS?
It is recommended that you begin the Change of Address process at least 2 weeks before your move. This will provide USPS enough time to process your request and mail you the Move Validation Letter (MVL) to your current address before you move to your new address.
Change of Address Confirmation
After submitting your Change of Address request, USPS will promptly mail a Move Validation Letter (MVL) to the address that you’re moving from to validate the request.
Within 5 postal business days before your change of address is scheduled to start, you should receive a Customer Notification Letter (CNL) or Welcome Kit at your new address. The CNL and Welcome Kit both contain a Confirmation Code. If you submitted your Change of Address online, additionally, you will receive a Change of Address Confirmation via email that also contains your Confirmation Code. Retain this Confirmation Code as you will need it in order to make changes or cancel your Change of Address order. You can still make changes or cancel your order, but you will need to visit a post office to do so in person.
Don’t Stop With the USPS
While it’s important to change your address with USPS, you will still need to update your address with your service providers, banks, credit card issuers, and Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Since your mail is forwarded only for a year, you run the risk of having your service providers lose track of you after the time expires unless you tell them where you are.