dangers of hoarding

The Dangers of Hoarding

Hoarding is a serious form of obsessive compulsive disorder that affects millions of people throughout the United States. There are many different types of hoarding, but all varieties lead to health hazards and unsafe living environments.

Hoarding Risk Factors

Hoarding introduces a long list of potential dangers. Let’s look at a few of the most common and concerning risks:


  1. Bacteria and Mold
    Hoarding creates the perfect environment for mold and bacteria to thrive. Mold spores can make it difficult to breathe and pose serious risk to people with asthma. Likewise, bacteria from rotting food or trash can easily make you sick.
  2. Pests
    Hoarding also attracts pests such as rodents, ants, flies, cockroaches, and other unsavory critters. Many of these pests carry dangerous parasites or pathogens like E. coli, and an infestation puts everyone in the household at risk.
  3. Poor Air Quality
    When vents or other airways are blocked by stacks of clutter, air is not able to circulate freely, leading to poor air quality in the home. Combined with other common dangers of hoarding like mold or animal droppings, this lack of airflow presents a major risk to respiratory health.
  4. Tripping Hazards
    Aside from the internal health risks of hoarding, there are also physical hazards to consider. It’s easy to trip when trying to navigate cluttered spaces filled with stacks of junk, and collapsing stacks can cause items to fall and injure anyone nearby.
  5. Structural Hazards
    Homes that are crowded with clutter are very difficult to maintain. Pests, mold, or water damage may compromise structural integrity over time, and general wear and tear that would normally be caught and repaired may go unnoticed until it’s too late.
  6. Fire Danger
    One of the most serious dangers of hoarding is fire. Not only does excessive clutter increase the risk of a fire breaking out, but it also makes it infinitely more difficult for emergency crews to respond safely and effectively.
  7.  Mental Burden
    Hoarding is a legitimate mental health disorder that is usually intertwined with a larger issue such as depression, anxiety, or a traumatic event. To address hoarding behavior and prevent it from worsening, it’s very important for individuals with hoarding tendencies to get the support they need from friends, family, and if necessary, a licensed mental healthcare professional. Please also read Impact of Hoarding Disorder.

Hoarding Cleanup

Cleaning up is the best way to address the risks of hoarding — but keep in mind that once a hoarding situation has become severe, it is not always safe to approach it like a typical cleaning project. Many of the same hazards that make it dangerous to live as a hoarder make it dangerous to clean a hoard. Airborne mold, nesting animals, and potential structural damage all present serious risks during any hoarding cleanup attempt.

It’s best to consult a professional cleaning company that can assess the situation and recommend the best way to proceed. If necessary, a biohazard cleaning service like Clean Keepers can employ specialized tools and equipment to restore your space to its pre-hoarding condition safely and efficiently.


The Impact of Hoarding: A Widespread Issue Affecting Millions

Hoarding disorder (HD) is a complex mental health condition characterized by compulsive accumulation of possessions and an inability to part with them. In the United States, HD is estimated to affect between 2 and 6 percent of the population, making it an exceptionally widespread problem that impacts the lives of millions.


The consequences of hoarding reverberate beyond the physical dangers of a cluttered living space. Hoarding also leads to considerable emotional strain that can be overwhelming for family members. Recognizing the far-reaching impact of hoarding is an essential first step in recovering or providing effective support for a loved one suffering from HD.

How Does Hoarding Affect Family Members?

When a person hoards, it affects everyone in the household. In some cases, it can even affect relationships beyond the household.

Emotional and Developmental Burden on Children

Growing up in a cluttered and unsanitary environment is not only unsafe for children, but also detrimental to their emotional development.
Children need structure. The chaos and uncertainty of living with a hoarder contributes to a child’s likelihood of developing mental disorders of their own, such as anxiety or depression, and makes it considerably more difficult for them to develop the organizational skills they will need to succeed in everyday life.

Mental Burden on Spouses

The spouses of hoarders also deal with a large amount of emotional stress. Overwhelming clutter that a spouse feels powerless to control can cause them to become emotionally isolated and resentful, which puts strain on the relationship.

Family Conflict

Hoarding-related tension within a family can escalate into outright conflict, further contributing to a stressful or unsafe living environment. If the problem becomes severe enough, it could even lead to divorce or intervention from child protective services.

How to Help a Hoarder

Supporting a loved one with hoarding disorder requires a sensitive and level-headed approach.

Understand the Nature of Hoarding

It’s very important to recognize that hoarding is a complex mental health issue, not merely a “bad habit.” Changing hoarding behavior is a gradual process, not a single conversation.

Seek Professional Help

Encourage your loved one to seek out mental health services such as counseling or support groups. Professional guidance is often the best (and safest) way to address the underlying factors that contribute to hoarding behavior.


Communicate with your loved one about how their hoarding behavior has impacted you or the family as a whole. Be sure to express your concerns in a non-judgmental manner that fosters a safe space for dialogue.

Don’t Force Change

Hold your loved one accountable for making necessary changes without aggressively pressuring them. For example, don’t try to demand that they throw out all their possessions by a certain deadline. Recognize that change takes time and that the best thing you can do for your loved one is provide a supportive environment for their recovery journey.

Hoarding Cleanup

When your loved one is ready to change their hoarding behavior, you may find that the hoarding cleanup process is more than you can handle on your own. In extreme cases, it may not be safe to begin dismantling a large hoard without specialized biohazard cleaning equipment.

The best way to ensure the cleaning process is completed safely and efficiently is to contact a reputable biohazard cleaning service. At Clean Keepers, our trained biohazard cleanup technicians are here to help with all your hoarding cleanup needs in Fort Myers and the larger Southwest Florida area.

Hoarding Cleaning Tips

Tips for the Hoarding Cleanup Process

If you’re reading this article, you’re probably familiar with the fact that hoarder cleanup isn’t easy. Part of the tough job is convincing a hoarder to clean out their home – and, since hoarding is a mental illness, it’s important to treat this process with care.

If you’ve convinced your loved one to get started on clearing their hoarded home, you may feel overwhelmed with the task at hand. That’s why Clean Keepers is here. We are hoarding cleanup professionals, and we can get you and your family through this unforgiving job with smiles on our faces.

Tips for the Hoarding Cleanup Process

Here are six steps to clean out a hoarded home:

1. Clear the Trash

To clear out the accumulated junk in a hoarded home, you will need:

  • Manpower
  • Heavy-duty trash bags
  • Gloves
  • Disinfectant and other sanitization products
  • Access to a pickup truck or SUV to transport trash off the property
  • A dumping location

2. Clean and Sanitize the Floors

In all likelihood, trash and junk have been covering the floors of a hoarded home for many years.

Here are three things to keep in mind when tending to the floors:

  • You might have to mop the tile and floorboards three or four times to remove buildup.
  • Steaming the carpets will help remove small pieces of debris and liquid that have sunk into it.
  • You may need to replace the floors in extreme cases of hoarding.

3. Disinfect, Disinfect, Disinfect

Germs can (and will) collect everywhere within a hoarder’s home, so don’t leave out any surface when you disinfect. Hiring hoarding cleanup professionals like Clean Keepers will ensure that there’s not a spot that gets missed.

4. Scrub the Bathroom

Biological waste makes a home in the bathroom, so take necessary precautions when cleaning this room. Wear a face mask, throw away toiletries, clean the toilets, and scour the shower.

5. Deodorize

A hoarder’s home is going to smell bad – there’s no way around it. Using deodorizing spray like Febreeze or Glade will make the area smell a lot better. Clean Keepers also offers deodorizing services and we can eradicate the smell professionally.

6. Hoarder Cleanup Services

Cleaning a hoarder’s home is not a task for the faint of heart. If you’re up for the job, follow these tips to help your loved one get back on their feet. If you’d rather leave it to the pros, contact Clean Keepers. We are the top biohazard cleaning company in Southwest Florida, and we’d be glad to help.

haorder cleanup

The Rundown on Hoarding Cleanup

Compulsive hoarding is defined as “a persistent difficulty discarding or parting with possessions because of a perceived need to save them.”

In the United States, there are between 5 and 14 million people diagnosed as compulsive hoarders. That’s more than most realize; it’s about double the number of Americans diagnosed with OCD.

Though this number is high, it can also be a comfort for hoarders to know that they’re far from alone in their disorder, and there are plenty of resources available if you want to change your lifestyle.

Whether you or a family member qualify as a hoarder, this article is for you. We’ll discuss the ins and outs of hoarding cleanup, how long the process of cleanup is, and how much it costs.
Hoarding Cleanup
Hoarding is not centered around one specific item; hoarders can collect all kinds of things. The most commonly hoarded items are:

  • Papers
  • Books
  • Containers
  • Furniture
  • Garbage
  • Animals

There are a few reasons that one might search for a hoarding cleaning service. Maybe the hoarder themselves has passed away and the house needs to be cleared out. Or maybe the hoarder is ready to part with their items and begin a new section of their life.

Whatever the reason, when you’re ready to clean up a hoard, it’s time to call a hoarding cleanup service. These professionals, like us at Clean Keepers, will clean the hoard safely, efficiently, and hygienically. At worst, a hoard can be dangerous. At best, it’s challenging. Let professionals handle this (sometimes daunting) endeavor.

Our team of professionals knows the tricks of cleaning a hoard because we are specifically trained for such jobs. We understand that the process of cleaning top to bottom makes the job easier, and we are experts in the process of removing hazardous materials like mold and rodent droppings.

This is not a job for you or your loved ones; the act of choosing to part with a hoard is difficult enough. Let us do the heavy lifting.
How Long Will the Hoarding Cleanup Company Take?
There’s no set time for every hoard cleanup. The length of time differs for every home.

A longer cleanup might be due to:

  • A large home
  • Every room being full
  • The hoard is big and/or dangerous
  • Hazardous materials being present
  • Obstructions created by the homeowner

A faster cleanup usually includes:

  • A smaller space
  • A smaller hoard collection
  • A homeowner being absent from the job

How Much Does Hoarding Cleaning Cost?
Just like time spent on a hoarding cleaning job, the price is variable too. After our team of experts analyzes the circumstances of a hoard, they can better estimate the price.

The price of a hoard cleanup can go up depending on:

  • How long the job takes
  • The size of the property
  • How many staff members are needed
  • The severity of the hoard

Hoard Cleanup is a Job for Professionals
Even with a relatively easy hoard cleanup, the job will not be convenient or manageable for someone untrained. This is why you must call professionals, like our team at Clean Keepers, to get the job done correctly.

There’s no reason to take on the stress of completing the job yourself. Our professionals can transform your home back into the sanctuary it once was. Give Clean Keepers a call today for a free estimate.


hoarder cleanup costs

The Cost of the Hoard

Hoarding is a serious issue that affects over 1.4 million people in the United States. It’s not about being an avid collector; compulsive hoarding is defined as “a behavioral pattern characterized by excessive acquisition of and an inability or unwillingness to discard large quantities of objects that cover the living areas of the home and cause significant distress or impairment.”

Hoarding disrupts people’s lives in a big way. Not only the lives of the hoarders themselves, but the lives of their families as well. When a house becomes overtaken by a hoard, in many cases, the hoarder themselves can’t easily move around and will become injured by their own hoard. Because of the dangerous and unclean nature of their home, their family stops visiting and the hoarder becomes isolated from the world.

This is no way for anyone to live, but it’s a sad reality for many Americans. It’s not so easy as simply throwing these items away, though. Many compulsive hoarders can see the consequences of their illness, but are powerless to stop it. More often than not, professional mental help is needed – and there’s no shame in receiving such help.

The cost of the hoard is more than just monetary, but Clean Keepers can help when it comes to hoarder cleanup, no matter the type of hoard. We specialize in:

  • Shopping hoarding
  • Food hoarding
  • Garbage and trash hoarding
  • Animal hoarding
  • Paper hoarding
  • Collector hoarding
  • Sentimental hoarding

There’s no such thing as the point of no return when it comes to a hoarder’s house cleanup. No matter how big the job, Clean Keepers are up for it. We’ve seen it all when it comes to hoarding, so if embarrassment is what you or your family member is worried about, you can put that out of your mind. When we come to restore a hoarder’s house back to its original state, there is no judgment involved.

Our hoarder cleaning varies in prices, but it’s important to note that the higher the risk of bodily harm that the hoarder is in, the higher the price will be. We must take into account the size of the property, the amount of hoard that needs to be removed, level of client involvement, supplies, PPE, methods of disposal, and time. Oftentimes, we charge $.75 – $2 per square foot of hoard, depending on the severity of cleaning that is called for.

Your safety is our number-one priority. Take the shame out of hoarder cleanup and give Clean Keepers a call for a free quote today.

Cleaning Up From Hoarding

Starting Fresh In 2019: Cleaning Up From Hoarding

If you have always thought of hoarding just as a choice of lifestyle, then you have been wrong all along. Hoarding is a psychological disorder which makes getting rid of personal stuff, property, or anything a challenge, buying too much, and even misplacing valuables because space is overly cluttered. Hoarding may get out of control and make the victims home no longer efficient and even worse become a health hazard. Helping someone with hoarding tendencies to clean up and organize their homes may prove a challenge especially if you are not aware of the hoarding disorder. One is required to first seek professional help from mental health experts and afterwards employ the services of professional cleaners.
Probable Dangers Linked To Hoarding

  • Risk of Fire hazards
  • Increased indoor pollution
  • Less escape routes for rescue teams
  • Tripping and falling
  • Biohazard Development

Organization and Clutter Removal
Cleaning Up From HoardingIf you are in Southwest Florida, visit our certified hoarding cleanup consultants who will take you through the process of cleaning up from hoarding. We will go through your house with your help to determine what is worth keeping and what is not, those items that are of value to you will be organized and categorized properly. We ensure the entire cleaning up from hoarding process is done as you would wish every step of the way. We are meant to ensure your safety and that of your home environment, we also professionally sanitize your home so you get to have a completely healthful start. Cleaning up from hoarding in a residential home is a service which requires special skills to achieve the intended result.
Helping a Hoarder Clean Up
Managing an individual with hoarding problems may be emotionally draining, especially when they do not accept, they have a problem. Employing the services of an expert may be beneficial to you, here are the steps a hoarding professional will use in cleaning up hoarding;

  • Talk About Cleaning and Organizing

It is important to include a mental health professional before cleaning up from hoarding. This is because they will take you through conversations involving the benefits of organizing your home and getting rid of the surplus items present. A professional will know exactly what to say to convince you to accept employing the services of professional cleaners.

  • Evaluate the area and create a cleaning strategy.

Since victims of hoarding are usually unable to differentiate between valuable items and those which are worthless, a cleaning expert will help assess the situation and make the victim see the need to get rid of some items. Employing an expert in cleaning up from hoarding is necessary because they have the knowledge and equipment to manage dangerous or hazardous possibility that come because of hoarding. We as experts will develop a cleaning plan and a strategy to help put your property in order and well cluttered.

  • Develop a Strategy for Waste Removal

When cleaning a hoarder’s home, you are likely to throw a lot of waste therefore, a waste removal strategy is expected. Professionals recommend renting dumpsters to use and have it removed once the cleanup is done. In cases where there are dangerous materials in a pile of items or you notice a foul smell from the pile, ensure you seek help from cleaning services available for they have necessary equipment for such situations. Hazardous occurrences however require handling by specialists.

  • Organizing the House

A cleaning professional will move room by room clutter and organize items while arranging valuables and putting aside the items to get rid of. Once the home is clutter free, it will be carefully cleaned and sanitized. The expert in charge will also examine the state of the house to see if it requires repairs which are to be catered for.

For more information on these and more, contact

Cleaning Up After A Hoarder

Cleaning Up After A Hoarder: How To Deal With The Gross Filth

It is normal for everyone to have a little clutter of the things they have collected over the years inside the house. A messy closet, a junk full of cables, and an attic with sentimental stuff from childhood. Hoarders, however, are in a different league altogether because their clutter and possessions are accumulated to such a point that they take over a person’s home and life in general. Hoarding, which often spirals to living surrounded by gross filth, is a serious psychological disorder that is known to ruin the person’s life and the lives of those with whom they live.

Luckily, there is a simple and guaranteed way to deal with this problem. First though, let us get to know the risks that hoarding pose.
Health Risks associated with hoarding
Cleaning Up After A HoarderMost chronic hoarders face constant challenges including financial difficulties, problems with family and friends, and a range of health hazard to themselves and others. Some of the common most serious health risks include:

Air quality problems and resulting complications: Dust, bad odors, and ammonia generated by decaying elements are often microscopic but they can cause serious health problems to the people and animals living in the hoarder’s home. The top reason to be concerned about hoarding is the respiratory problems it causes to humans and animals, most of which the damages are only noticeable over time.

Mildew, fungus, and mold: Hoarders do not just have a problem getting rid of personal possessions, they typically do not throw away left-over foods, even after they go bad. They do not dry wet clothing and may never clean up the refrigerator or the shelves. This is fertile environment for microscopic mildew, fungus, and mold that will not only make a house stink but also pose serious health hazards.

Rodents, insects, and pests: A hoarder’s situation gets worse if there are animals in the mix. Rodents, insects, and all kinds of parasites thrive in environments where there is rot, waste, and little disturbance. People get sick and even die from diseases and health complications brought about by cockroaches, flies, rodents, and other insects. The only effective way to eradicate pest infestation is to clean up the gross filth and tidy up the hoarder’s home.
The right way to clean up after hoarder
If you, a friend, or someone you love is trapped by the hoarding baggage, take this as a problem that needs professional assistance, just like most other psychological problems. The best way to clean up after a hoarder is to hire a professional cleaning company because there always is more than meets the eye when you enter a hoarder’s home.

First off, a professional cleaning company understands the problems hoarders face and cleanup will focus on life restoration rather than ‘getting rid of the junk’. This means they will use the right tact to avoid making the hoarder feel more isolated, embarrassed, or stressed because of the filth they chose to live with.

More importantly, a professional cleaning company will assess the hoarder’s home, and based on the junk, will know which pests and parasites may live there and which chemicals to use to eradicate them. This is largely because such an environment is already toxic and requires special clothing and equipment to safely and effectively clean it up.

A full cleaning service will typically involve removal and disposal of the hoarded items and restoring the living space to a clean and healthy environment. The right company should have a cleanup team that is capable to restore the filthiest home to a sparkle within a few hours.