It is very common for people to wonder how long an address change takes to go into effect. The answer to this question can actually vary depending on a number of factors. The more that you know the better equipped you will be to ensure that you submit your request in time to guarantee there will not be a lapse in mail delivery.
Apply For Address Change
The best way to guarantee that you get all of your mail when making a move is to apply for the address change up to 30 days before you move. You have the ability to set the date for the change within the application. This will be the best way to ensure that you do not miss out in receiving any of your mail. The closer it is to the date of your move that you submit your application the more likely it is that errors will occur. Being proactive in this area really is your best bet.
If your move is not planned well in advance and you have to take care of the address change process with less notice, you want to be sure that you do it at least 7 days in advance. It will take the United States Postal Service a number of days to process your request. Additionally, they need to begin rerouting your mail which is not done before it reaches your original post office. This makes it so that you will get your forwarded mail sooner than you would have in the past.
Submit Your Address Change Request
The easiest way to go about submitting your address change request is to apply online via the USPS website. There you will simply need to enter your current address, your new address and your personal information. It is essential that you check to make sure that all of the information is accurate. Giving them the wrong address to forward your mail to will definitely lead to you not getting your important documents. Take the time to double check all of the information that you enter before you move on to the next page.
When applying online they will request that you give them a credit card which they will charge one dollar to. The address on this credit card must be the same as your current address. The purpose of this is to guarantee that you are who you say you are. It is a means of protecting you from having your mail stolen by someone looking to get your personal information. While it is perfectly safe to provide them with this, some people are uncomfortable with submitting their credit card number online. If this is the case for you, you also have the option to go directly to your local post office to change your address.
The biggest downside of doing this at the post office is that you may have to wait in line, especially if you go during peak hours. When you arrive you will want to get in line to talk with a customer service representative. They will be able to give you the appropriate form to fill out. Again, you will want to be sure that you accurately fill this form out so that you do not risk sending your mail to someone else’s address.
Essentially, it is best to begin the change of business address form process about a month before you will be moving. This is the best way to ensure that there are not any delays in the process. In the least, it is definitely best to apply at least a week before you move or you will risk not getting all of your mail.