This blog contains some simple tips and advice from two regular guys. We're not accountants, financial advisors, or brokers, so follow, ignore, or discuss our ideas as you see fit.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Blocking the evil temptation of catalogs

Posted by Matt

Okay, maybe "evil" is too strong a word. But I know I can't resist thumbing through the REI catalog when it comes around, even if I don't need anything. And how many furniture upgrades are at least inspired every year by the Pottery Barn catalog?

It always bothers me that so much paper is being wasted to produce catalogs of things that we don't need. Even if you recycle, producing them is so wasteful, and most people just toss them into the trash!

How can we get out from under the barrage? It takes time to opt-out of every catalog as you have to do each one individually, usually by phone and during the hours when you are trying to be productive. My mother-in-law found us some help. Check out Catalog Choice.

This is a great non-profit that takes your address and allows you to select from a long list of catalogs that you don't want to receive. No phone calls. I signed up in less than five minutes. If enough people did this, the retailers might have to reduce the number they produce every year (currently at 19 BILLION!)


Meredith said...

I personally enjoy flipping through the catalogs, even though we rarely if ever buy new merchandise.

I use Pottery Barn like a decorating magazine; it keeps me in touch with color and style trends.

I think we also get Cabela's and REI. I study the prices to help me spot good deals at yard sales and thrift stores.

Best score inspired by the catalogs: Wenonah Adirondack canoe for $200.

Matt said...

I once heard the term "consumer porn" to describe catalogs that people flip through for enjoyment, but finding the best price by educating yourself on the going rate is a great idea!