Frequently Asked Questions

When you place a bid, you enter the maximum amount you're willing to pay for the item. Other bidders won't know your maximum bid amount.

After receiving your maximum bid, our system automatically places bids on your behalf starting with the next bid increment (10% of the opening bid). This means you don't have to keep coming back to rebid every time another bid is placed. This feature ensures that you remain the highest bidder until bidding reaches your maximum amount.

If another bidder placed the same bid before you or a higher maximum bid, we'll let you know that you've been outbid so that you can place another bid. However, if no other bidder has a higher maximum bid at the end of the auction, you win the item, even if your bid doesn't go as high as your maximum bid. You could pay significantly less than your maximum price.

The bidding increment is 10% of the item's opening bid. Please note that not all increments will be displayed in the bid history as a result of maximum bidding. Maximum bids of the same amount will not be recorded. Whoever placed the bid first will show in the bid history.

Example: You place a max bid of $65 on an item with an opening bid of $50. Bid history shows that you are currently the highest bidder at $50. Another bid comes in at $55. The system increases your bid to $60. A fourth bidder places a max bid of $70. Your $65 bid will not be displayed. The next bid displayed will be $70, even though that is not a 10% increment.

As a rule, retracting bids is not allowed on Shop Housing Works. When you are the winning bidder, you are obligated to pay the high-bid price for the item.

No. Bids with dollar signs and commas will be rejected. Use only decimal points.

Automatic notification emails are sent to highest bidders. Reception of automatic emails is not guaranteed. All bidders are strongly urged to check the website after the auction closes to find out if they won. It is the winner's responsibility to pay for and, when applicable, pick up items within 48 hours of auction closings, regardless of whether email confirmations are received. When time permits, courtesy calls are made to highest bidders. Courtesy calls are not guaranteed.

Auction items may be paid for in person at the items listed location or online after the auction has closed. All online payments must be made through PayPal. Items you've won will show up as “awaiting payment” in your account. Follow the on-screen instructions to add the items to your shopping cart. Once you have all the items you want in your shopping cart, click on the PayPal logo.

Small, non-breakable items are shippable nationwide by FedEx or can be picked up in the store. All large items must be picked up in store or may be delivered through a moving company limited to the New York City area. It is the buyer's responsibility to hire movers for in-store pickup. Housing Works does not provide delivery services.

Yes. For multiple items in one order you will be charged our standard shipping fee.

Shipping for all items starts at $7.00.Before purchasing your order, you can view the calculated cost of shipping on PayPal.

If you typed an apostrophe while attempting to create a new account, please delete it and try again. If you continue to receive an error message, please contact customer service.

All auction sales are final unless an item has been grossly misrepresented. If you feel an item you have purchased or would like to purchase has been grossly misrepresented, please email us or call us at (718) 786-3516.

Items on our website, as with the items in our stores, come from people just like you. We depend on your donations to keep us going. Learn more about donating to Housing Works Thrift Shops.

Gift cards are redeemable at all 12 Housing Works Thrift Shops and the Housing Works Bookstore Cafe, but they are not redeemable for online purchases at Gift cards purchased online will be sent to the shipping address provided at checkout.

All of the proceeds from our online sales go toward providing housing, healthcare, and supportive services to homeless New Yorkers who are affected by HIV/AIDS. Learn more about Housing Works.

Everything on our website has been inspected for flaws and damage. There will be no unmentioned flaws. Common or minute signs of gentle use may not be included in the descriptions. Items are not officially appraised, certified, or authenticated. Our vintage and authenticity commentary is accurate to the best of our knowledge, but we cannot guarantee that it is 100% factual. All measurements are approximate.

Housing Works offers shipping with a one-time standard fee for each order paid online.

Nationwide shipping is included in our shipping fees, but International shipping is not. If needed, we can ship an item internationally when provided with your FedEx account number. Any further questions regarding International shipping please email:

Items purchased online are shipped via FedEx ground, we do not offer expedited shipping.

Items over $100 are required to be signed upon delivery unless requested otherwise by the customer. If you want your order to be delivered without a signature, please email and receive confirmation from a customer service representative.

Tracking numbers are emailed from, once the item has been scanned and picked up by FedEx. The email on your PayPal account will be the email that receives your tracking updates.

PayPal receipts provide all the shipping information for your order: please include your address, phone number, and email in your PayPal shipping address.

If you need your address changed after your purchase was made, please email the correct address within 24 hours.

If you want multiple items shipped together, they must all be paid for in one transaction. Once an order is created it cannot be combined with another order.

Please allow up to 14 days for delivery.

Terms and Conditions

Unless otherwise stated, all items are used. We have tried to provide the maximum amount of information regarding physical condition to the best of our knowledge. Please take the time to carefully read the description before bidding. We do our best to proofread all posting prior to an auction opening, but we make mistakes from time to time. Please email or call (718) 786-3516 if you feel an item has a description mistake or if you purchased an item that you feel was not described properly on the site.

Please complete your account information correctly, incomplete or false account information (e.g. undeliverable email addresses or incorrect phone numbers) will be disabled. Items must be paid for within 48 hours of the end of the auction. After 48 hours without payment, the item may be offered to the next highest bidder. Bidders who repeatedly fail to pay for items will be prevented from placing any future bids. Items being picked up must be removed from the store within 48 hours of closing. Items that have been paid for but not picked up within 48 hours may be offered to the next bidder. No refunds will be offered for paid items that are not picked up.

We are happy to provide pickup extensions (but not payment extensions) on occasion. Please contact us at or (718) 786-3516 to request an extension. You are also invited to call the stores directly and speak with a manager regarding pickup extensions.

All items are located in the New York City area. We will ship any item that's shippable via FedEx ground service. Please allow up to 14 days for delivery. Orders will not be combined after payment is received. If you want multiple items shipped together, they must all be paid for in one transaction. For more information, please review our shipping policy in the FAQs.

Furniture and some larger items are not available for shipping. Please check the item's page to determine whether the item is shippable. If the item is posted as “pick-up only,” the buyer is responsible for having it removed from the store within 48 hours of the auction's closing. Housing Works does not provide local delivery or moving services. Items can be paid for and picked up at the store location that hosted the auctions. Items cannot be transferred between shops for pickup.