It may sound strange, “Can I move my mailbox somewhere else?” As a homeowner, you may find yourself wanting to relocate the mailbox at some point. Whether you need to move it closer to the side of your driveway, move it to the street, or have it placed across the street. Carrying out USPS mailbox moves and changes is a fairly common undertaking.
However, you cannot move a mailbox without sticking to the rules and regulations of the United States Postal Service (USPS), which dictate where you can install mailboxes. So before detaching the curbside mailbox or unscrewing a wall-mounted mailbox, you need to understand if you need permission for your mailbox relocation.
Sometimes, you can request the post office move the mailbox if it doesn’t meet requirements like minimum height clearance or distance of the mailbox to the front of the street. In our guide, you can learn more about moving the location of a mailbox and why you need permission from USPS to reinstall your mailbox properly. By the end, you’ll better understand when you are allowed to move your mailbox or post to another location. (Read Is It Illegal To Put Flyers In Mailboxes)
What Are the Rules for Mailbox Placement?
The first thing to understand when looking to move your mailbox is that there are guidelines set by the United States Postal Service (USPS) that dictate where you can and cannot place your mailbox. USPS often does not legislate the relocation of the residential mailbox without good reason, as USPS employees are impeded from their postal deliveries.
These rules exist to make mail delivery safe and efficient for USPS mail carriers. According to USPS regulations, relocating a mailbox needs to be placed to allow safe and efficient delivery by USPS employees.
If you remove your mailbox from one location to another, the standard mailbox should be placed on the right-hand side of the road in the mail carrier’s travel direction. If you live on a two-way street, your mailbox must be placed on the right side of the street relative to your house number/address, hence why the USPS are not willing to move it back to the opposite side of the road.
In addition, move the mailbox closer so the front of the roadside mailbox at the curb is 6 to 8 inches from the curb or road edge. The bottom of a house mailbox installation should be 41 to 45 inches above ground level to accommodate mail delivery from a truck.
Make sure to put the mailbox in a clear area with enough room around it so USPS employees are not impeded when delivering the mail. There should be no obstructions as the mailbox is sometimes obstructed by bushes, trees, or your neighbors mailbox flag. One exception could be moving your mailbox further away from your neighbor’s mailbox area, and you would like to move your mailbox from one side of your driveway to the other. (Read When Can Concrete Get Wet)
Do I Need Permission to Move My Mailbox?
Do I need permission to move our mailbox? Now that you know the rules, the next question is – do you need to ask permission before moving your mailbox? The answer is yes and no. You need approval if you want to move your existing mailbox across the street or somewhere else significant. The reason is that this can disrupt the mail carrier’s route.
To get permission, you need to submit a request to your local post office asking to relocate your mailbox support. Generally, they approve requests that comply with the local USPS guidelines, and the delivery guys can reach the mailbox.
However, you likely do not need permission if you only want to move your mailbox slightly on the same side of the street, such as closer to your driveway. Likewise, when moving home, you can take the mailbox anywhere you move to.
This small move is usually fine as long as the new placement follows the postal service’s regulations. But when in doubt, it never hurts to notify your local post office so they are aware you need to replace the mailbox. Also, it can depend on your area if you can have a mail slot on your door.
Can the Post Office Make Me Move My Mailbox?
Conversely, having your mailbox far from the street or not up to standards could result in the post office requesting you move your mailbox from the street position to one more suited to delivery. Reasons they may ask you to relocate your mailbox include:
- The mailbox is placed on the wrong side of the street relative to your house number.
- The mailbox is currently the incorrect distance from the curb or road edge.
- The current mailbox is installed too low to the ground for carriers to reach.
- The mailbox installed is currently obstructed by landscaping.
You must comply if the post office notifies you that your mailbox needs to be moved. Failure to do so means the post office can refuse to deliver your mail until the box is fixed. The post office cannot make you take your mailbox down altogether. But they can mandate that you move it to a compliant location to receive mail in the mailbox without excess effort.
What Type of Mailbox Can I Move?
When it comes to moving mailboxes, you need to consider the type you currently have:
- Curbside/Roadside Mailboxes: These are the classic mailbox next to the street with a post. A curbside mailbox may be easy to move if you reinstall them properly at the new location.
- Wall-Mount Mailbox: Wall mount mailboxes attached to a home’s exterior can also be moved. You must patch and paint any holes left behind and ensure it’s installed securely in the new spot.
- Neighborhood Cluster Box Units (CBUs): If you live in a neighborhood with clustered mailboxes and mailbox keys, you cannot request, “Can I remove my mailbox?”. According to the USPS designation, the entire neighborhood mailbox station must stay in its designated location.
- Locker Banks: Like CBUs, you cannot relocate locker-style gang mailboxes on your own. The post office controls the placement of these community mailboxes.
- Mail Slots: Some homes have mail slots built into their front door rather than a mailbox. Relocating a mail slot is more complicated than moving a mailbox and will require making alterations to your door.
How Do I Move My Mailbox the Right Way?
If you have gotten approval from the local USPS office and are ready to move your curbside or home mailbox, be sure to follow these tips:
Notify your local post office beforehand about the date you plan to move it. Let them know the new location so carriers know where to look.
Move your mailbox post and box on a non-delivery day like Sunday to avoid disrupting service.
Make sure the new installation meet USPS regulations for distance from the curb, height, etc.
- Install your mailbox post securely into the ground at the new spot. Use concrete to hold it in place.
- Attach the mailbox to the post carefully and test to make sure it’s stable by opening and closing the door.
- Repaint the post if needed so it looks nice.
- Put reflective house numbers on the new mailbox immediately to identify it.
- Double-check that the mailbox door closes properly and the flag goes up and down correctly.
Following these steps will help your mailbox relocation go smoothly! After you notify the post office, the mail carrier will resume delivery to your new mailbox location. (Read Will A Fake Owl Keep Hawks Away From Chickens)
Conclusion: Should I Move A Mailbox From The Street?
When relocating your residential mailbox, following the United States Postal Service regulations is crucial for smooth mail delivery. This includes seeking approval beforehand if moving across the street, ensuring proper curbside clearance, notifying your local post office about changes, and correctly installing the mailbox post and box.
With a curbside mailbox, carefully detach it, move the post, and re-mount the box at the right height. Patch any holes at the old location for a home wall-mounted mailbox and securely affix it in the new spot.
Remember, never move clustered neighborhood mailboxes or locker banks yourself. By keeping the USPS informed about any mailbox relocation and meeting their requirements, you can avoid delivery disruptions and safely receive your mail no matter which qualified site your mailbox calls home.
FAQs: Can You Relocate Your Mailbox Across The Street?
Relocating your mailbox brings up many questions. Here are answers to some frequently asked questions:
Can I move my mailbox to the other side of the street?
Suppose you get approval first since it affects carrier routing. However, the post office won’t want to move the mailbox from one side of the street as they want the mailbox kept on the side matching your house number.
What if I need to move my mailbox from the front of my house?
Talk to your neighbor first about fixing their non-compliant mailbox location. If they won’t remedy it, notify your local post office. They can force the neighbor to move their mailbox if it doesn’t meet regulations.
How long does it take to get approval to move a mailbox?
It typically takes 7 to 10 business days after submitting a relocation request for the post office to review and approve moving your mailbox, telling us it isn’t a quick process.
What if I keep my mailbox facing the road rather than the house?
Simply rotating your existing curbside mailbox without moving the post is generally allowed without post office approval since it doesn’t impact delivery. (Read When To Move Ducklings Outside)
Can I move my mailbox while keeping the existing post in the ground?
Yes, as long as the height and distance from the new location to the curb/street meet USPS requirements. You may need a longer arm attachment.
What should I do if my mailbox gets damaged from a car accident or storm?
You can temporarily move your damaged mailbox as needed for mail delivery until it can be repaired or replaced using postal service regulations for height and distance.
How long does USPS take to adjust routes after a mailbox relocation?
Mail carriers need about 3 business days to adjust their route from the old mailbox to a new mailbox location after your request to move it.