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Hoarding can run in families, but psychologists are unclear as to whether this means that it is genetic or if people see their family members hoarding and therefore learn the behavior from them. However, it isn’t always a learned behavior; someone can start hoarding without any previous family history.

Supporting individuals struggling with hoarding tendencies within strata communities requires a collaborative and compassionate approach. Here are several ways strata communities can work together to provide support:

  1. Raise Awareness: Increase awareness and understanding of hoarding disorder within the community by providing educational resources, workshops, or presentations. This helps reduce stigma and promotes empathy and understanding among residents.
  2. Open Communication: Encourage open communication and dialogue among residents, strata council members, and property managers about hoarding concerns. Create a safe and non-judgmental space for residents to share their experiences and seek support.
  3. Offer Supportive Services: Provide access to supportive services and resources for individuals struggling with hoarding tendencies. This may include referrals to mental health professionals, hoarding support groups, counselling services, or hoarding cleanup services.
  4. Develop Policies and Procedures: Develop clear policies and procedures for addressing hoarding concerns within the community. Establish guidelines for identifying and addressing hoarding behaviours, as well as protocols for intervention and support.
  5. Respect Privacy and Dignity: Respect the privacy and dignity of individuals struggling with hoarding tendencies. Avoid stigmatizing language or actions and prioritize the well-being and autonomy of the individual.
  6. Provide Practical Assistance: Offer practical assistance to individuals in need, such as helping with decluttering, organizing, or accessing community resources. Volunteer groups or committees within the strata community can provide hands-on support to residents.
  7. Facilitate Peer Support: Facilitate peer support networks or buddy systems within the community, where individuals struggling with hoarding tendencies can connect with others who have similar experiences. Peer support can provide encouragement, understanding, and accountability.
  8. Promote Healthy Living Environments: Emphasize the importance of maintaining clean, safe, and functional living environments within the community. Encourage residents to take pride in their homes and offer support for decluttering, maintenance, and upkeep.
  9. Regular Check-ins: Conduct regular check-ins with residents who may be struggling with hoarding tendencies to offer support and monitor their well-being. Establish trusting relationships and provide opportunities for residents to express their concerns or ask for help.
  10. Celebrate Progress: Celebrate progress and successes, no matter how small, in addressing hoarding tendencies within the community. Recognize and acknowledge the efforts of individuals working towards positive change.

By working together as a supportive and compassionate community, strata communities can create an environment that promotes understanding, empathy, and empowerment for individuals struggling with hoarding tendencies. Through education, communication, and practical support, residents can come together to address hoarding concerns and promote the well-being of all community members.

Hoarding cleanup services play a crucial role in restoring safety, cleanliness, and livability to hoarded strata properties. Here’s how they contribute to the process:

  1. Assessment and Planning: Hoarding cleanup services begin by conducting a thorough assessment of the hoarded property to determine the extent of the clutter and associated safety hazards. They develop a comprehensive cleanup plan tailored to the specific needs of the property and its residents.
  2. Professional Expertise: Cleanup crews are trained and experienced in handling hoarding situations with sensitivity, compassion, and professionalism. They understand the complexities of hoarding disorder and are equipped to address the unique challenges it presents.
  3. Safe Removal of Clutter: Hoarding cleanup services use specialized equipment and techniques to safely remove clutter from the property. They prioritize safety protocols to minimize health risks and prevent further damage to the building and its occupants.
  4. Biohazard Cleanup: In cases where hoarded items have led to unsanitary conditions, hoarding cleanup services provide biohazard cleanup to address mould, mildew, bacteria, and other contaminants. They disinfect affected areas and restore them to a clean and hygienic state.
  5. Organization and Sorting: Cleanup crews assist with organizing and sorting hoarded items, helping residents identify valuables, sentimental belongings, and items to discard or donate. They work collaboratively with residents to make decisions about what to keep and what to remove.
  6. Coordination of Additional Services: Hoarding cleanup services coordinate with other professionals, such as mental health professionals, social workers, and pest control experts, to address the underlying causes of hoarding behaviour and provide comprehensive support to residents.

Approaching residents about hoarding concerns requires sensitivity, empathy, and a collaborative approach. Here are some steps that strata managers can take to effectively address hoarding concerns with residents:

  1. Educate Yourself: Before initiating a conversation with the resident, educate yourself about hoarding disorder, its symptoms, and appropriate interventions. Understand that hoarding is a complex mental health issue, and approach the situation with empathy and compassion.
  2. Gather Information: Collect evidence and documentation to support your concerns about hoarding within the property. Document instances of excessive clutter, safety hazards, and violations of strata bylaws or rules.
  3. Choose the Right Time and Place: Find a suitable time and private location to have a conversation with the resident. Ensure that the setting is conducive to open communication and respectful dialogue.
  4. Express Concern and Empathy: Approach the resident with genuine concern for their well-being and the safety of the community. Express empathy and understanding about the challenges they may be facing, acknowledging that hoarding is a sensitive issue.
  5. Focus on Specific Behaviours: During the conversation, focus on specific behaviours or observations that have raised concerns about hoarding. Avoid making judgments or criticisms and instead emphasize the impact of hoarding on safety, health, and community well-being.
  6. Listen and Validate: Listen actively to the resident’s perspective and validate their feelings and experiences. Allow them to express their concerns, fears, and any obstacles they may be facing in addressing the hoarding behaviour.
  7. Offer Support and Resources: Assure the resident that they are not alone and that there are resources and support available to help them address hoarding concerns. Offer information about hoarding cleanup services, mental health professionals, support groups, and community resources.
  8. Collaborate on a Plan: Work collaboratively with the resident to develop a plan for addressing the hoarding behavior. Set realistic goals and milestones, and outline steps for decluttering, organizing, and maintaining a safe living environment.
  9. Respect Privacy and Autonomy: Respect the resident’s privacy and autonomy throughout the process. Avoid pressuring or coercing them into taking action but instead offer support and encouragement to seek help when they are ready.
  10. Follow Up and Provide Support: Follow up with the resident regularly to check on their progress and offer ongoing support and assistance as needed. Celebrate small successes and provide encouragement during challenging times.

By approaching residents about hoarding concerns with empathy, understanding, and a collaborative mindset, strata managers can create a supportive environment that encourages residents to seek help and address hoarding behaviours effectively.

Identifying signs of hoarding within a strata property is essential for early intervention and ensuring the safety and well-being of residents. Here are some common signs that hoarding may be a problem within a strata property:

Excessive Clutter: One of the most apparent signs of hoarding is the accumulation of excessive clutter, both indoors and outdoors. Common areas, such as hallways, stairwells, and common rooms, may be filled with stacks of items, making it difficult to navigate.

Blocked Walkways and Exits: Hoarded items may obstruct walkways, doorways, and emergency exits, posing a serious safety hazard in the event of a fire or other emergencies. Residents may have difficulty accessing exits or manoeuvring through common areas.

Visible Signs of Distress: Residents exhibiting signs of distress, such as anxiety, isolation, or difficulty maintaining personal hygiene, may be struggling with hoarding disorder. They may express reluctance or refusal to allow others into their living space.

Unpleasant Odours and Pests: Hoarded items can attract pests, such as rodents and insects, and may contribute to unpleasant odors within the property. Residents may notice an increase in pest activity or complain about foul smells emanating from certain units.

Visible Signs of Neglect: Hoarding may lead to neglect of the living environment, including poor sanitation, mold growth, and structural damage. Common areas may show signs of disrepair or neglect, reflecting the challenges of maintaining the property.

Utilities and Services Affected: Hoarding can impact the functioning of utilities and essential services within the property. Blocked vents or electrical outlets, overloaded circuits, and plumbing issues may arise due to hoarded items interfering with these systems.

Social Withdrawal and Isolation: Residents struggling with hoarding disorder may experience social withdrawal and isolation, avoiding interactions with neighbors or strata members. They may feel ashamed or embarrassed about the condition of their living space and may resist offers of help.

Repeated Violations of Strata Rules: Residents exhibiting hoarding behaviour may repeatedly violate strata bylaws or rules regarding cleanliness, maintenance, or storage of personal belongings. These violations may lead to conflicts within the community and strained relationships with neighbours.

It’s important for strata corporations and property managers to be vigilant and proactive in addressing signs of hoarding within the property. Early intervention, compassionate support, and collaboration with hoarding cleanup services and mental health professionals can help mitigate risks and provide assistance to residents in need.

There are many triggers that may lead someone to hoarding; often, it is found that people begin hoarding after stressful life events. This is a way of coping, as it makes them feel like they have control over something when life seems out of control in other ways. Hoarding can also be indicative of other issues in someone’s mental health, such as dementia or obsessive-compulsive disorder. However, each situation is unique and assigning one specific cause to a hoarding situation can be harmful.

There are no specific ‘cures’ for hoarding, but many people who develop hoarding disorders find that Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is key to helping them stop hoarding and regain inner peace. See our list of hoarding therapists here.

Animal hoarding is about more than simply having a lot of animals; this particular type of hoarding is often signified by the care of the animals and the overall living situation. For example, a person could have six pets and take good care of them while preventing them from taking over the home. However, a person who hoards may not be able to handle 6 pets and cannot say no to taking in more animals, even when the existing animals are causing havoc. Learn more about animal hoarding here.

Animal hoarding is often caused by the same factors, such as a traumatic life event, that causes the hoarding of possessions. However, animal hoarding can become destructive far more quickly than  hoarding of items, as animals can create a lot of waste and may even begin mating. Learn more about animal hoarding here.

If you or a loved one is struggling with hoarding, you may be wondering why you need a professional hoarding cleanup company. After all, you might think that you can just sort through the clutter yourself and throw away what you don’t need. However, there are many benefits to hiring a professional hoarding cleanup company that you may not be aware of. Here are some of them:


  • A professional hoarding cleanup company has the experience and expertise to handle any situation, no matter how severe or complex. They know how to safely and efficiently remove, transport, and dispose of the accumulated items, while respecting your privacy and dignity.
  • A professional hoarding cleanup company can also help you with the emotional and psychological aspects of hoarding. They can provide you with support, guidance, and referrals to mental health professionals who can help you address the underlying causes of your hoarding behavior and prevent it from recurring.
  • A professional hoarding cleanup company can also help you restore your home to a safe and healthy condition. They can sanitize, deodorize, and repair any damage caused by the hoarding, such as mold, pests, fire hazards, structural issues, and more. They can also help you organize and rearrange your belongings in a way that suits your needs and preferences.

As you can see, hiring a professional hoarding cleanup company is not only a smart decision, but also a compassionate one. By entrusting your hoarding cleanup to the experts, you can save yourself time, money, stress, and potential health risks. You can also reclaim your living space and improve your quality of life.

Hoarding Disorders can begin at any point in one’s life. One of the first signs that your loved one may be experiencing a hoarding disorder is a new defensiveness around their living space. They might be distressed at the thought of letting you into their space, lest you judge them for their environment. Someone who is developing hoarding disorders may also start to become withdrawn and won’t be involved in social activities they used to enjoy.

According to the Institute for Challenging Disorganization, there are five different levels of hoarding, also known as the ICD Clutter Hoarding Scale. Level 1 is the least severe of the scale, whereas Level 5 requires significant intervention. You can learn more about the ICD Clutter Hoarding Scale here.

Hoarding behaviours can affect any person at any age. However, studies have shown that hoarding is more prevalent in men and commonly affects older adults from age 55 to 94.

Hoarding is a disorder that affects millions of people around the world. It is characterized by a persistent difficulty in discarding or parting with possessions, regardless of their actual value. Hoarding can cause significant distress and impairment in various areas of life, such as health, safety, social relationships, and work. Hoarding is considered a mental illness when it interferes with the person’s daily functioning and well-being. Hoarding can also be a symptom of other mental disorders, such as obsessive-compulsive disorder, depression, anxiety, or dementia. Hoarding is not the same as collecting or being organized. People who collect or organize their belongings usually enjoy their possessions and can access them easily. People who hoard often feel overwhelmed by their clutter and have difficulty finding or using their items.

Mental health professionals have recognized a condition known as Compulsive Hoarding Disorder, in which individuals are more likely to hoard. Learn about the signs that someone is struggling with Compulsive Hoarding Disorder here. If someone that you know is struggling with hoarding, we have a list of mental health resources here.

Because every job we do is different, we provide free, no-obligation assessments. For the assessment, we arrange a visit with either you or the person who will allow us access to the hoarded place, and we will take a few pictures that will help our team create an accurate quote for the job, as well as a time frame for completion. Depending on the urgency for completing the job, we are able to assign more technicians in order to meet your timeframe.

The first step we recommend is to contact our office to speak to one of our hoarding cleanup specialists, who will guide you through the process of decluttering the space. The number to call is 1-855-468-2588 or arrange an onsite assessment by email (Click here)

Our staff is trained to sort belongings so that valuable and sentimental items are recovered. If you are aware of any items that we need to specifically look for, we request you inform us before the cleaning begins.

We do not perceive anyone’s belongings as “Junk” to just be removed and discarded. We understand that there’s a reason you have everything and that some items are more difficult to part with than others. That’s why we work closely with you to develop a plan and maintain communication each step of the way.