Hoarding is a compulsive disorder that causes an individual to keep an overwhelming number of items in the home, most of which have little or no value. Hoarders are unable to throw these items away. Over time, their living space will become cluttered the point where it’s no longer usable for its intended purpose. There are many hazards to be aware of in a Tampa, Florida, home that’s hoarded.
Increased Fire Risk
Hoarded homes typically have a great accumulation of flammable materials, such as newspapers, magazines, junk mail, and books. Should a fire start on this type of property, it will be very difficult to extinguish. Adding to the danger is the difficulty of maneuvering through a hoarded home. Windows and doors may be blocked, making it difficult for firefighters to enter and for individuals to escape.
The clutter of a hoarded home makes it difficult to see structural issues clearly. There could be hidden damage from water or animals amid the piles. The sheer weight of the hoarded items can present another danger, putting excess strain on the building. If the hoarding isn’t addressed, homes can often become uninhabitable and unsafe to a degree where repair is impossible. It’s crucial that you clean out the home so you can identify these types of problems.
In a hoarded home, it’s not uncommon to find mold and mildew which can lead to eye, skin, and throat irritation, respiratory problems, and other issues. Accumulation of urine and feces can cause respiratory and cardiac dysfunction. Food that’s not stored properly or that’s eaten off unsanitary dishes can lead to foodborne illnesses. A hoarded home is a serious health hazard.
If there’s a hoarder in your life, it’s important to get professional assistance cleaning up their space so you can identify and eliminate these hazards. Our team at ServiceMaster Restore is experienced in the unique challenges of cleaning up a hoarded home. Contact us at 727-300-3773 for help.Image provided by Shutterstock