“My aunt didn’t have anything. Don’t bother sorting her place. Just junk everything!” Adam insisted when he hired a hoarding remediation professional to clean out his Aunt’s hoarded home after her death. Understanding the psychology of hoarding and how hoarders conceal their true situation from family and friends is very important. Cleaning up a hoarded home needs to be done with the same urgency and diligence whether or not the homeowner is present. Since we are hoarding remediation professionals, we didn’t just “junk everything” in her home.
Professionals who specialize in cleaning up hoarded homes take a comprehensive approach to projects. It is not about trashing everything in a home. When working with a homeowner, hoarding remediation professionals understand the need for:
- Pre-work to understand how the client got to this point
- Motivation to help them get through the overwhelming work of sorting and making decisions
- The cleanup to sort, organize, or remove (whether it be to donate, sell, recycle, shred, or trash)
- Restoration of the home to a safe and functional space, this often includes removal of dangerous rodent droppings and disinfection.
When helping a hoarder whether or not they are involved in the cleanup, hire a company who understands that hoarding is a mental illness to get the best result. When a hoarder is alive, they know where the valuable items are in the home. Once they are gone no one may know where to find hidden items. By understanding the mental state of a hoarder, cleanup professionals will be even more diligent when completing the sorting process and will increase the odds of finding items that may be hidden in the home.
In Adam’s case, it was truly a treasure hunt and he was astonished by the outcome. The final tally of money was over $11,000. There were also several life insurance policies, collectible coins and silver along with boxes of family heirlooms and pictures which are priceless.
As a hoarding remediation professional, we work hard to respect our clients circumstances and decisions as we move forward with the cleanup process and take great pride in knowing we are able to protect a family’s estate and legacy.
Steri-Clean is a national franchise with over 20 years of experience. Steri-Clean Colorado is locally owned by Andrew and Annemarie Roberts. Steri-Clean Colorado provides personal service, detailed plans for clean-up including saving items of sentimental or financial value, and a network of specialists to provide after-care and support. If you need help or know someone who does, call 1-800-462-7337 or visit https://www.colorado.steri-clean.com/ for a free consultation and estimate.