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Say Goodbye to Individual Mailboxes

February 26, 2019

Say Goodbye to Individual Mailboxes

Non-verbal communications have been a critical part of every civilization. The forms of delivery of communications have changed, from carrier pigeons and horse ridden messengers to mechanical vehicles, airplanes and such. Today digital forms are the most popular and accepted ways of non-verbal communication. But even as we embrace digital communications, the charm of a receiving and opening a letter remains. And of course, you can’t ship objects digitally, at least not yet.

In the United States, USPS is an inherent part of our DNA. It was conceived even before the United States won Independence. Today more than 30 million homes all over the United States receive door delivery and about 50 million more get mails at their curbside mailboxes thanks to USPS. That’s no small feat.

Did you know, the USPS doesn’t receive taxpayers money?

It earns its revenues from its business operations. Most of the revenue was earned from First Class Mails, which is now dwindling. More and more business, as well as personal communication, is now going the electronic route. This has been affecting USPS financially.

The only service category which has increased revenues in 2018 with a 10% increase from 2017 is shipping and packages. But that isn’t going to cut it. The annual losses which have reduced over the years and it’s commendable that the postal services have reduced their debt by $1.8 billion, finishing the year with $13.2 billion in debt outstanding.  Decreasing mail volume and increasing costs in wages, fuel prices and contribution to future retiree healthcare could drive this historic institution to an estimated $50 million bailout.

 Here is what the current costs look like

  • Door to door delivery costs USPS almost $350 per address
  • For curbside delivery, it costs $224 per address

To cut costs Darrell Issa, a California Republican has been pushing for Postal service reforms since 2011-12. One of the key initiatives is that new housing developments, as well as existing housing areas, move to cluster mailboxes, with the exemption of people with disabilities. In addition to residential areas, the USPS is asking business parks and shopping malls to voluntarily move to a centralized delivery model.

Apart from saving costs ( servicing a cluster mailbox will bring down costs to service an address to $160), moving away from door to door delivery to centralized delivery would enable USPS to service more locations in less time. Cluster mailbox(CMB) solutions are estimated to save USPS $6 billion.

Earlier the postal services suggested on what kind of postal delivery infrastructure that a certain area would choose. It was negotiable; developments like apartments used cluster box units while other areas used individual mailboxes. But since the introduction of the postal bill, USPS now is proactively pursuing centralized mail delivery. The postal organization now has to approve how they will deliver mail. So any new apartments, groups of duplexes and apartments are now required to have CBU’s or centralized mail stations.

In addition to being convenient and cost effective for USPS, cluster mailboxes are safer. They are more secure, and packages can be left in the secure lockers, leaving the keys in the personal mailboxes.

In case of cluster mailboxes, there are anywhere between 12-16  personal mailboxes, one or more package delivery locker and an outgoing mails slot. The chances of theft in a curbside mailbox is much higher, as its secluded and unattended most of the time. A CBU, on the other hand, is secured by a key and as there are multiple mailboxes tampering with a single one is even more difficult as the miscreant has no clue about when another person will come out to check their mailbox. Also, cluster mailboxes are easily accessible and visible from apartments or duplex complexes that they serve, if they are installed outside. If they are installed indoors that also adds another layer of security for your incoming mail or package as well as your outgoing mail.

With the movement towards CBU’s gathering steam, sooner or later it will be made mandatory. If you are looking to help out USPS as well as make sure that your mail is not tampered with, check out our collection of CBU’s that has a collection of standard, classic or traditional cluster box unitsfor your mail infrastructure. You are sure to find one that you like.