Hoarder Cleanup & Repairs
People throw around the term “hoarder” loosely and jokingly, referring simply to clutter or someone who is bad about throwing things away. In actuality, Hoarding Disorder is a medical problem recognized by psychiatrists and other medical professionals. Put simply, Hoarding Disorder means someone experiences feelings of anxiety and fear even when considering discarding something. There are different levels of severity for the disorder, ranging from low, guarded, elevated, high, to severe.
A low-level version of the illness might mean someone simply has a hard time throwing away things like birthday cards and other items that bear some sentimental value. If the disorder is more intense, it might mean experiencing anxiety throwing things away, even without a strong emotional connection, such as newspaper clippings they found interesting. The highest end of the spectrum is more familiar to popular culture now. The TV show Hoarders takes crews inside homes stacked floor-to-ceiling with things. That’s where the illness becomes dangerous for the person with the disorder, anyone else in the home, and anyone who hopes to live there in the future. If you’re hoping to clean up after a hoarder, you’ll need the help of a professional.
No separation between items of value and trash
There may be no separation between items of value and trash in the homes of severe hoarders. Piles of filth accumulate and meld together over the years. Those piles create the risk of tripping and falling. Hidden inside, there could be anything from shards of glass to bugs and animals. The debris piles also create fire hazards, as there could be flammable material inside. To get rid of everything, you can’t pile it into garbage bags. Professionals approach the situation cautiously with special tools, experience, and remove everything without causing a bigger mess.
Technicians also need to check for mold and mildew. Exposure to these growths can cause health complications like stuffy nose, wheezing, and itchy eyes and skin. It can also induce asthma attacks. After a hoarding situation, make sure you hire a professional like American Veterans Restoration who can remove the mold. Dust that gathers on the trash can also cause similar health concerns, impacting the air quality within the space.
Pests like cockroaches and rodents are attracted to the same moisture that causes mold and mildew to build up, and the abundance of discarded food. These creatures are notorious vectors for disease and must be handled by a professional who can get the area cleaned and sanitized. The animals may also chew through wires, creating further fire hazards. Since the clutter has been sitting there for some time, it is more than likely decomposing like an indoor compost heap. Of course, getting the smell out requires professional deep cleaning; it could also mean ripping out and replacing carpets. The trash may have also rotted wallpaper or paint away.
In some cases, the decaying material may sink through the walls themselves, leaving the building’s structural integrity compromised. Wooden boards on the floor can be worn or have developed holes. Cavities might have been punched through walls, water leaks might be eating away at the ceiling, and broken appliances might have kept the home from properly circulating air, because they have been covered with debris and forgotten. Portions of the home may need to be torn out and revamped.
For a job like that, you need a company you know you can trust. You’ll also need one that has the equipment and expertise to get the job done right. American Veterans Restoration is that company. Our main objective has always been to help our fellow Americans lead happy, comfortable lives. We’re still fighting for that same goal, just on a different type of battlefield. Call us today for a free estimate.