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What Type of Mailboxes Can I Provide For My Apartment Complex?

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The type of mailboxes you’ll provide to your apartment building or complex will depend on two main factors: the number of residents and where they’ll be picking up their mail. Most likely, you’ll want the USPS to handle delivery to each tenant. While there are cases where landlords share mailboxes with tenants, and then distribute the mail themselves, this is only feasible if you have only a small number of tenants. In other cases, it will be better if you purchase commercial mailboxes for USPS delivery.

There are three types of commercial mailboxes available to apartment buildings and complexes. Which type you will need will depend on how many tenants you have and where they will be picking up their mail.

Looking for outdoor delivery? If you want to place your mailboxes in a central location, or don’t have a central building or clubhouse to house mailboxes, look into cluster mailboxes. These units come with their own pedestals and many also include parcel lockers for the delivery of smaller packages. Cluster mailboxes are versatile and are sometimes called pedestal mailboxes. They come with horizontal compartments, each of which has a tenant lock. Cluster mailboxes can be mounted side by side to accommodate larger apartment complexes. The number of units you’ll buy will depend on how many residents you’re serving. Look for 4C units, which are USPS-approved.

What if you have a clubhouse or kiosk available? A better option may be to look into horizontal mailboxes, provided you have adequate space. These mailboxes can be simply mounted against a wall or recessed into the wall. Recessed mailboxes can save space, though you’ll need to have or make an opening for them. Like cluster mailboxes, 4C horizontal mailboxes include parcel lockers (one per ten compartments) and can be mounted side by side to serve large numbers of residents.

Are you replacing old mailboxes with the same type? This is the one case where you can replace old-style, 4B horizontal mailboxes, as well as vertical mailboxes, with the same type of model and still receive USPS delivery. This only applies if you are not altering the area in which the mailboxes are being installed.

Will you be delivering the mail to residents yourself? If you’re receiving the mail from the USPS and then distributing the mail yourself to a small number of residents, the mailboxes you purchase don’t have to follow the new 4C regulations. Vertical mailboxes, which usually contain 5-10 compartments each, can be mounted or recessed into a wall. Older-style (4B) horizontal mailboxes can also be used for this purpose. However, please note that hindering, tampering with, or stopping the delivery of mail to residents is a federal offense.