Cleaning Up a Hoarder’s Home

Cleaning Up a Hoarder’s Home

Your loved one collects things to the point where they are surrounded by clutter. If they have collected multiples of things with little to no value and are unable to throw anything away, they may be a hoarder. Help for hoarding requires mental health intervention, help cleaning their home, and, just as importantly, a way to discard the excess junk.

Getting Help

Before attempting to clean anything from a hoarder’s home, it is essential to remember that this is very difficult for them. A therapist or other mental health professional should be consulted. Nothing should be removed until the hoarder is ready to commit to throwing things out as part of their therapy. It will not help to take a hoarder’s possessions and discard them yourself. This can cause acute emotional distress. The hoarder must be in therapy and actively participating in the decluttering process.

Start Small

Begin with one room and focus your attention solely on its contents or choose one type of item, books, for example, and go room to room collecting them. Then allow the hoarder to go through the books and decide what to keep. Not everything needs to be discarded. Small steps are big progress for a hoarder.

Be Prepared

Be prepared to sort items into four categories: keep, discard, recycle, donate. Encourage your loved one to exercise their organizational skills by sorting their things. Choose a designated location for each category. If they have a very full house and you will be discarding a great deal of junk, consider renting a roll-off dumpster for disposal. This will help on several levels.
  • You can choose the size dumpster you need. A 12-yard dumpster is equal to about three and a half pickup truck loads. A 20-yard dumpster is approximately six pickup truck loads.
  • You won’t have to haul the junk away yourself. The dumpster rental company will pick up the full dumpster for you.
  • You can set deadlines based on how long you have the dumpster. You can always add days to your rental contract and keep it longer if you need to.
Helping a hoarder sort through their home? Call Oaks Dumpster Rental at 585.225.6257 to reserve a dumpster today.
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