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Getting Started on a Hoarding Clean out

“I Just Feel So Overwhelmed!”


This is a common statement from clients before hiring a hoarding remediation company. The task of throwing away a few items isn’t especially difficult. However, when that quantity multiplies to thousands of items, the decision-making process alone makes it exceedingly difficult just to stay on task. Add to that the logistics of sorting, getting a dumpster, providing the labor to haul things out, moving furniture, handling donations, recycling, cleaning and so on, and you will find a seemingly insurmountable project that may take weeks or months to complete. Imagine asking a neighbor if he or she would be willing to devote their next two months helping you? Who is going to say yes to that?


Experienced Hoarding Remediation Technicians are efficient and can typically work through a significantly cluttered 3-bedroom home with a basement in 2 or 3 days, looking through every box, every bag, every stack of items to ensure that nothing important is thrown away. Photos, documents, money, jewelry, and anything you consider important will be set aside in the “keep” area. No assumptions will be made about what is in a container, labeling it “trash” without a thorough examination first. No judgement will be made on the condition of your home.


How Do I Get Started?

When searching for a hoarding remediation company, estimates should not cost anything, nor should they obligate you to contracting with them to do the work. Look for companies that are insured and bonded, have excellent reviews, and can offer references. You can either submit photos of each room (take a wide shot of each room), or call to schedule a time to meet with an estimator. Office staff should write up a formal estimate for your approval. It should outline the time and materials required, the steps the technicians will take, the price, and what you can expect after the work is completed.


Homeowners insurance does not cover the cost of clutter remediation unless clearing an area is required to get to something that IS covered by insurance, such as water damage, sewage backup, or some type of biohazard. You can call your insurance company and inquire about coverage.


• An estimated 635,000 hoarders are in Pennsylvania.

• Hoarding is recognized as a mental health disorder.

• 1 in 5 individuals is a hoarder.

• Often affects intelligent and professional people.

• Typically manifests after age 50.

• Examples of hoarding types: animals, trash, books, food, information, electronics.

• Each year up to 250,000 animals are reported as victims of living in hoarding conditions.



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