The National Change of Address (NCOA) service is offered to mailers through a network of individual businesses
licensed by the USPS. The NCOA licensees* are authorized to perform address-matching
services on mailersí lists at prices that are competitively determined by the market (prices may vary from licensee
to licensee). Costs generally range from $2.00 to $5.00 per thousand addresses. On a regularly scheduled basis, the
NCOA licensees receive current change-of-address (COA) information that is used to update the NCOA database provided by
the Postal Service.
The NCOA process takes the mailerís list and programmatically examines each element of the address. The
program attempts to verify or correct the ZIP Code; standardize the format for address, city, and state names;
and append ZIP+4 Codes, carrier route codes, and delivery point barcode information to the mailerís addresses.
Once this standardization process is completed, the entire mailerís list is matched against the NCOA database.
When a match from the list is made to an NCOA name and address, the new address information is returned to
The NCOA database consists of address information for individuals, families, and businesses that have moved
within the past 36 months. The names and addresses are compiled from COA orders presented to the Postal
Service when a permanent move occurs. Temporary moves are not recorded on NCOA.
Because NCOA is used prior to a mailing, it greatly reduces UAA mail, which in turn reduces rehandling costs.
NCOA also provides mailers with a PS Form 3553, which proves the list was updated on a given date by Coding
Accuracy Support System-certified software.
* Licensee names and telephone numbers are provided for your
convenience. Representatives from each company are able to discuss the requirements and provide pricing information.