In our previous post we explained the basics of what hoarding entails and what a cleanup or restoration from hoarding might look like. In today’s blog post, we will be outlining 5 reasons you should NOT attempt to DIY the cleanup from a hoarding situation. While it might seem as easy as getting rid of junk, there is much more to consider, and professionals will be able to safely and quickly deal with the mess. What kinds of things can you expect during a hoarding cleanup that make it extra complicated?

1. Biohazards

Dirt and other debris pile up with surprising speed in a hoarding situation, which means whoever performs the cleanup will be exposed to extreme sanitation issues. This is the best home for bacteria to breed and grow, and you may be exposed to other unexpected things like human and animal waste, bodily fluids, dead pests, and fungus. Handling these things without proper protective equipment is very dangerous and should not be attempted by untrained individuals.

2. Animals and pests

Decomposing food and other rotten items attract different types of pests like rats, mice, cockroaches, and termites. These types of pests spread further disease and pose a threat to you if you come into contact with them. You might need to fumigate to get rid of them, which should also be performed by a licensed professional.

3. Mold and mildew

Many of our blog posts explain the ideal breeding grounds for mold, but the main takeaway for hoarding is this: limited airflow, darkness, and possible dampness all contribute to the growth of mold, mildew and bacteria. Undetected water can also occur and be masked by the large amount of items, both creating more mold and leading to structural instability.

4. Supplies and disposal

Specialized cleaning supplies and equipment are necessary to get the job done when it comes to hoarding cleanup. Some of it may only be available through specialized distributors, and the right cleaners are required for the right parts of the job. You also need to know where and how to dispose of any waste according to your local jurisdictions in order to avoid potentially hefty fines.

5. Safety concerns

One of the hallmarks of a hoarder’s home is compromised air quality. All kinds of mold, dust, and other particles populate the atmosphere and even more of them fill the air when they are disturbed by the work of moving objects and cleaning. Breathing this type of polluted air can lead to serious respiratory problems and long-term allergies, which is why experienced cleaners with proper protective equipment are required.

Fires can also occur in a hoarder’s home more easily, especially because of objects of blocking heat vents or coming into contact with damaged wires. The same clutter can also obstruct people inside the home in the event of a fire, making it harder for first responders to get inside.

Although a hoarding cleanup might seem like a job that is large but still simple, it can be anything but. If you or someone you know is dealing with a challenging restoration issue, please contact the Flood Medix! We are trained and ready to help you get back on track and we can take the stress out of any mess.