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Each day when I go to check my mailbox I see at least half a dozen packages waiting to be collected by other residents. Many of these packages are from Amazon, while others are from FedEx, stores like Crate & Barrel, Target and Best Buy. Shopping online is so convenient. We do it on our lunch break, in our pajamas, in bed, in a hotel room, even in the passenger seat of a car. But convenience has a price, especially when you live in an urban area.

How well is this working?

More and more I hear about packages being stolen. Many times the thieves leave empty boxes behind, taking only the merchandise within. Other times they find it more expedient to grab the package and run. In some cities like New York, doormen have been a mainstay in high-rise buildings for decades. Here in Boston we instead call them concierges. In some of the high-end buildings they truly are concierges providing a variety of services. In many buildings they are merely there to accept and safe guard packages and sometimes act as a gatekeeper to residents’ units. There are also buildings that have call boxes at the door allowing guests as well as delivery personnel to be buzzed into the building.

Residents living in buildings with call boxes at the door, brownstones, townhouses, and single family homes are ripe for having their deliveries stolen. Many times I arrive at Brownstones and see packages sitting outside the front door. Buildings like mine with a call box outside aren’t as secure as one might think. Visitors, delivery personnel and some residents are lax about letting others enter the building behind them without knowing who they are, and as you can see from the picture above packages can be visible from the street. Just today I received a package that was scheduled to be delivered tomorrow. Had I not checked to see if the delivery was still on target I wouldn’t have know it had already been delivered – my bell was never rung by the delivery person.


If you’re experiencing difficulties receiving things you’ve ordered online, consider these alternatives:

  1. When ordering items online from stores providing in-store pickup, consider having Hands of Time pick them up for you when you’re unable to do it yourself. We do this all the time for clients at stores like Crate & Barrel, The Container Store, Target and Best Buy.
  2. If you’re ordering from Amazon you can have your purchase delivered to an Amazon Locker where it will sit waiting for you to pick it up. We can pick up your package here as well.
  3. If a package has been delivered to your door and you don’t want it sitting there all day or all weekend if you’re away, Hands of Time can go to your house and bring your package inside.
  4. If your package is sitting at the Post Office waiting to be picked up, Hands of Time can take your postal slip giving us pickup authorization, pick up your package and bring it to your home.

Note: Hands of Time will also handle your returns. Did you know that if you return an Amazon purchase via an Amazon Locker you may not have to pay shipping?

If you’d like to have us pick up your purchases or handle your returns contact us at info@handsoftimeconcierge.com or 617.359.6865 or use our contact form.