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Signs of Hoarding: How Restoration Experts Can Help

Every home gets messy and full of clutter from time to time. However, when the clutter comes to a point where it affects your life and your health, a more serious problem may be underway. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America defines hoarding as the compulsive purchasing, acquiring, searching, and saving of items of little or no value. Hoarders are incapable of organizing or discarding their items, and even though they know this way of life is affecting their lifestyle and health, they believe one day that these possessions will be useful or needed. Here are some ways to tell if you or a loved one have signs of being a hoarder.

Parts of the home are inaccessible or unusable

When you enter a compulsive hoarder’s home, you’ll generally find that the furniture has been moved into the middle of the room. Piles of objects, whether they’re papers or random possessions will be stacked in corners and eventually fill the room where only a pathway exists throughout the home.

There is no organization to the clutter

When it comes to hoarding, there is no organization to the clutter they have accumulated. Like items may be placed with other like items, but usually, things are stacked precariously or tossed everywhere inside the room.

Items have no value

A lot of hoarders will keep broken appliances, old clothes, or junk mail; anything that they may need one day, or that they may get around to fixing one day. None of these items hold any actual value, and probably never have or will. They are unwilling to give their items up and get angry when the idea is mentioned by a third party.

The home is unsanitary

If a home is so cluttered that only pathways exist instead of rooms, then you can bet the home hasn’t been cleaned in a while. Depending on how long the hoarding has been happening, there could be long-standing unwashed dishes and laundry and grimy toilets.

Defensive when confronted

If you know someone who has signs of hoarding and you’ve tried to confront him or her, you may know the conversation can end badly. If someone has a compulsive hoarding habit, he or she will feel attacked when you mention how “messy” the home looks. Compulsive hoarders believe they have plans for all of their items, and if you don’t like the way their home is then you will not be welcome anymore.

Once a hoarder has made the decision to clean up his or her home or property, the cleanup and remediation should be handled by a company with the experience to perform the specialized care and treatment required. GET RESTORATION EXPERTS recognizes that cleaning out a hoarder’s home is not just another cleaning job. We have the compassion and the expertise to take every step necessary to thoroughly eliminate the clutter and return the home to a clean, safe, healthy living environment.

For a full list of services, call 1-877-503-8782 or visit us online at www.getrestorationexperts.com/hoarding/.

 

Is Hoarding a Fire Hazard?

Hoarding is a significant threat to residents, neighbors, and especially firefighters. First responders run into a number of problems when there is a fire in an excessively cluttered home. Unfortunately for firefighters, these hoarding-caused fires are not a rarity because hoarding creates the perfect environment for fires to flourish. Read all about hoarding and why it is a fire hazard.

 

What is Hoarding?

 

There is so much more to hoarding than just clutter. It is a mental disorder that can be caused genetically, triggered by a traumatic event, or caused by another disorder. Hoarding includes the collection of large amounts of various items that accumulate in the home due to strong urges to save them. This behavior eventually leads to an overflowing home where rooms are no longer accessible and clutter disrupts daily activities.

 

Is Hoarding an Issue for Firefighters?

 

Hoarding is a major issue for firefighters. Excessive clutter blocks entrances and exits, which prevents firefighters from being able to access the home. Hoarding puts the firefighters at risk because of obstructed exits, falling objects, and excessive fire loading. Besides being difficult for firefighters to access the home, hoarding also makes it hard for them to search for occupants. This means that hoarding not only affects your safety but also those trying to help.

 

Does Hoarding Increase Your Risk of a Fire?

 

With so many excessive materials in the home, hoarding exponentially increases your risk of having a home fire. Fire flourishes when it is in a dry environment with plenty of kindling. All of the hoarded materials within a home create plenty of opportunities for fires to not only start but to also continue to burn. The excessive clutter also increases common accidental fires, often caused by electrical wiring, cooking, or even just lighting a furnace. Just having that extra flammable material around increases the risk of fire.

 

At Restoration Experts, we know how serious hoarding is. We understand that a hoarder’s possessions aren’t considered clutter to the hoarder. That’s why we make sure that the home is not only restored to a livable, less flammable condition but that the homeowner’s wishes are respected. No matter how bad the hoarding has gotten, call the Restoration Experts. We tackle everything from waste to insect removal. Contact us today at 1-877-881-5183.

The Dangers of Hoarding

Hoarding creates an unhealthy living environment in your home. However, that isn’t the only problem it causes. In recent years, hoarding has become a popular topic. Professionals in the health and safety industries continue to study the dangerous effects associated with hoarding scenarios. Many states even provide classes and seminars to educate those who work in the social services industry. If you, or someone you know, has a home that is too cluttered with contents, it’s imperative you act to make a change. Talk to a restoration services expert to find the best way to handle your hoarding problem before health and fire departments work against you. Seek help before it leads to a dangerous outcome for all those involved. 

Hoarding Causes Health Hazards

Naturally, one of the problems associated with hoarding is the potential for health hazards. Too much stuff cluttering your home makes it difficult to keep it properly cleaned. Add pets to your residence, and it increases the chance that your home is less than clean. For instance, pets sometimes find their way into small places and leave a mess that you might not see.

Additionally, items that break over time create sharp edges. If these are unseen due to clutter, you leave yourself vulnerable to injury. Until the clutter is cleared away, there is no way to really know what type of problems lie beneath the piles that have built up in your home.

Mold is another health hazard commonly seen among hoarders. As clutter is cleared away, you might find water damage and mold infestation that you didn’t even know was there. Since mold often causes sickness, it is essential to clean up the problem professionally.

Hoarding is a Public Safety Concern

You might feel that it is your home and your business to do what you want inside your house. But, hoarding is a problem that can affect your safety and the safety of the public. For starters, the more contents that build up in your home, the more likely you are to have a falling hazard. If you fall and need medical assistance, you also put those who respond to your call at risk.

The most significant concern when it comes to hoarding is the fire hazard it creates. Fire hazards risk the lives of those who live in the house, the neighbors, and the first responders who come to the call. It poses severe challenges for any firefighters who navigate a home engulfed in flames. Mostly, the house lacks clear access. Contents that are piled up can cause flames to spread more quickly. Some first responders have been severely injured and even killed in homes that are over cluttered and catch fire.

Collapse hazards cover two different scenarios when it comes to hoarding. The more contents you have piled up in your home, the more likely the piles will collapse. When an extensive collection of stacked belongings collapses, residents can become trapped. The buildup of clutter can also affect the structural integrity of your home. The weight of clutter buildup can cause structural damage to your house. Buildings are only designed to withstand a certain amount of weight. By exceeding that weight, you compromise the structure of your building.

Hoarding is a serious problem that creates many different hazards. Professional restoration services are appropriately trained to address the safety and health hazards associated with hoarding. They carry the expertise needed to address the problem, clean up, and deliver a solution that keeps you safe.

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