Compassionate Hoarding – How To Clean It Up

A hoarder is someone who collects and accumulates all sorts of items and clutter in their home while letting it all sit and stand unused for an extended period of time. You may find mountain-high clutter with piles of dirt, dust, rats, insects, termites, etc. Being a hoarder isn’t something that can be cured overnight, and usually there are underlying mental illnesses connected with hoarding. If you want to help someone handle their home, keep in mind that you will need assistance from others and it’s best to stay patient.

Cleaning up a hoarder’s house will not be a simple task at all. It will be difficult for the hoarder as they attach a sentimental value to the items they have.

Here is a list of items to bring before you start the clean up:

– A mask, goggles, gloves, and thick boots

– Cleaning and sanitizing products, buckets, mop, disinfectants and air freshener

– Insect repellent spray

– Flashlight to locate the nooks and corners

– First aid kit in case you get hurt

– Trash bags and bins

– Moving boxes

The Cleaning Process:

Once you have talked with your loved one and have come to the conclusion that it is time to let go of their items, you will need help and a few extra hands to move the heavy stuff.

1. Start Room By Room

Don’t try to clean the whole house at once; this method will be nearly impossible. Go room by room and take your time. Start by decluttering first, and sanitize everything after all of the items are out.

2. Differentiate The Items

Arrange all the stuff in three different sections – one to donate, one to the trash, and one to keep. You will be surprised to find valuable documents inside a pile of junk and clutter lying around.

3. Go From Top To Bottom

Throw away all half-used items as they can be dirty with pests and insects, old towels, worn-out rags, expired and old food, things that have not been used for a year or so, and all that looks like trash. Once you have thrown away everything, it will be a lot easier to categorize. Open the windows and doors for fresh air. Separate all the donation stuff to clean and sanitize. The valuables should be kept at a corner and dealt with later on.

4. Sanitization

Once everything is cleared away, wash and sanitize the furniture if usable. Clean the floors, walls, and ceilings. Carpets and rugs should be thrown away or professionally cleaned as they can become breeding grounds for small animals and pests.

5. Bathrooms And Kitchen

Bathrooms can be completed efficiently by washing with cleaning solutions and decluttering. Quickly wash them and sanitize and throw all unused or unneeded items. The kitchen utensils and dishes should be kept aside for cleaning and sanitization, and the kitchen cabinets and surfaces should be thoroughly cleaned.

6. Closets

Cleaning closets and storage spaces should be kept for the last task as they most likely will be overflowing with clutter. Continue organizing and decluttering these spaces as you normally would, but be prepared for a larger volume of junk for the smaller spaces.

7. Repair And Change

Once everything is clean, repair everything that is broken and needs fixing. Next, you can buy new and necessary furniture and get the walls repainted for a touch of freshness.

8. Hire A Junk Removal Company

Cleaning out a hoarder’s home is a long and tedious task that usually requires expert help. If you feel overwhelmed with the amount of junk, clutter, and debris that you need to haul away, call a junk removal team to assist. Junk removal companies are experienced and know how to haul away items with the best practices.

Junk Slayers offers junk removal services in Washington state with highly qualified teams. To learn more about junk removal services, customers can contact us at 509-230-3687 or by visiting

If you or someone you know struggles with hoarding, reach out to resources near you for professional help and support.


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