Hoarding ?
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Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Nov 29, 2017 4:48 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Paulio [PA]) Nov 29, 2017 4:57 AM
       Hoarding ? (by NE [PA]) Nov 29, 2017 5:04 AM
       Hoarding ? (by plenty [MO]) Nov 29, 2017 5:04 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Andrew,canada [ON]) Nov 29, 2017 5:21 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Nov 29, 2017 5:28 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Gail K [GA]) Nov 29, 2017 5:31 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Gail K [GA]) Nov 29, 2017 5:34 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Vee [OH]) Nov 29, 2017 5:44 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Nov 29, 2017 5:56 AM
       Hoarding ? (by S i d [MO]) Nov 29, 2017 6:04 AM
       Hoarding ? (by AllyM [NJ]) Nov 29, 2017 6:06 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Nov 29, 2017 6:35 AM
       Hoarding ? (by RB [MI]) Nov 29, 2017 6:39 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Nov 29, 2017 7:12 AM
       Hoarding ? (by S i d [MO]) Nov 29, 2017 7:43 AM
       Hoarding ? (by LindaJ [NY]) Nov 29, 2017 7:47 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Busy, busy, busy [WI]) Nov 29, 2017 9:33 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Nov 29, 2017 3:56 PM
       Hoarding ? (by Sisco [MO]) Nov 29, 2017 4:09 PM
       Hoarding ? (by Rocking Bear [FL]) Nov 29, 2017 8:23 PM
       Hoarding ? (by Barbara [VA]) Nov 30, 2017 3:06 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Nellie [ME]) Nov 30, 2017 6:10 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Lynda [TX]) Nov 30, 2017 8:26 AM
       Hoarding ? (by Wilma [PA]) Nov 30, 2017 6:05 PM

Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 4:48 AM

If you did a casual house inspection (during a HVAC filter change) on some new tenants of yours and you get the idea you may have rented to a Hoarder,....what action (if any) would you take?

First of all, where do you draw the line between someone who has a too much junk (they call it furniture or personal treasures) and some one who is a true hoarder?

Every time I pay a visit to one of my Class C tenants, it just seems they have an excessive amount of junk inside and outside the house. When does a hoarding tenant become a problem to you? --68.63.xxx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Paulio [PA]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 4:57 AM

It depends on a few things, but generally my first step is to make sure they understand there is no storage outside of the building. I am responsible to the city for the outside upkeep, so anything outside will be tossed. I find it's easy to define and there is little argument. The stuff is either inside their apartment or it is not. It get's trickier once you start addressing the inside, but at least it's an easy start. --74.47.xxx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by NE [PA]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 5:04 AM

If it's rotting food, waste, bagged up garbage I'd have an issue.

If it's piles of cluttery crap because they won't throw anything I way, I'll ask my wife if she knows them.....

Other than that, fire insurance. --174.201.xx.x

Hoarding ? (by plenty [MO]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 5:04 AM

I believe i would approach this with safety only in mind. --66.87.xx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Andrew,canada [ON]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 5:21 AM

In ontario, hoarding can be a big problem. We have recently had several serious fires due to hoarding.

If there is a fire, the landlord is charged/fined if hoarding was an issue.

The tenant can be "excused" as they may be deemed to have a "disorder" and therefore the landlord must/should have "accomodated" the tenant to the point of the landlord's financial hardship.

Hoarding ultimately becomes the ontario landlord's responsibility. --70.30.xx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 5:28 AM

Yesterday when I visited the house with the sewer gas issue, I noticed my tenants had junk piled on top of the floor heat vents and in front of the intake return grill. I had to tell them if you want heat in this house, you will have to move this stuff somewhere else. --68.63.xxx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Gail K [GA]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 5:31 AM

Poor people (those that rent my class C rentals) tend to save EVERYTHING. I can't tell if it's hoarding or they have plans (which never seem to come to fruition) to use the stuff.

Often this stuff will include moms (who has passed away) old furniture. The problem is this tends to be giant, heavy furniture that gets squeezed into smaller houses. I hate doing repairs on these houses because there's so much heavy furniture to move to get to the darn repair.

I can't tell them to get rid of moms stuff (which isn't all that valuable anyway) but only hope they will take it with them when they leave.

These tenants do tend to collect old tires which our trash folks will NOT pick up; our dump does have a "free tire" drop off once every three months or so. Will these tenants drive out there and drop these off? Are you kidding me? Even telling them to do this falls on deaf ears (and some of these tenants do not even own cars so I have no idea where these tires come from). Bill and I have been known to load up my truck and take them out ourselves because the "look" of eight dead tires does not improve the look of the rental property!

Gail --71.203.xx.xx

Hoarding ? (by Gail K [GA]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 5:34 AM

Funny you should mention the vent business Roy. I once had a tenant complain her air wasn't working well in the middle of summer. This was strange since the unit was fairly new.

Going over there we found that ALL but one floor vent (and that was the one in the bathroom) was covered by either heavy furniture or boxes of stuff.

Removing/shoving around furniture and boxes instantly solved the issue. Duh!

Gail --71.203.xx.xx

Hoarding ? (by Vee [OH]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 5:44 AM

If it involves food it is a basic housekeeping requirement and pest problems will amplify if ignored, but if I can not get to the service points like electrical breakers, water control valves, water heater/furnace then cleanup is needed, demonstrate this by turning off a hot water valve and leave, they will call while you are at the sandwich shop and you will come back after lunch - go inside and ask them to move the stuff out of the way so you can replace that faulty valve. --76.188.xxx.xx

Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 5:56 AM


I have a sister-in-law that lives in a 6,000 sq.ft house in a Class A+ neighborhood (Atlanta). Her house is filled with new stuff that resulted from years of unlimited shopping sprees. She even buys stuff she has no need for! Her husband (my brother) can't control her spending habits. All of this stuff (ie. 50 pairs of new shoes) is neatly arranged in their 3,000 sq.ft basement and it is like walking into a museum or an emporium whenever I visit them.

All I am saying here you don't have to be poor to be a hoarder. It exists in all income levels and the only difference is the quality of the junk. --68.63.xxx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by S i d [MO]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 6:04 AM

I agree with the "safety" and "exterior upkeep" approach. No blocked entrances/exits. No junk left outside. Our lease states that anything outside must be designed as outdoor/patio furniture only, and that anything found in violation of city/municipal ordinances will be removed at the tenant's expense.

I have one gal who like Gail K mentioned keeps everything, and once during an inspection I saw she had shoved her upholstered couch up to within 1 inch of the baseboard electric heater. I told her, bluntly, "If you keep doing that, you will burn this building down, possibly kill your neighbor (it's a duplex), and be destitute."

She moved it. Hasn't had any issues with that since.

One new trick I'm trying is adding storage to place for an extra fee. A nice-looking 8x8 "barn style" shed (high roof, vented, 20 year asphalt shingles), pre-built, delivered and "installed" around here costs $1,250. If I rent it at $35/month...I get all my money back in 36 months and it's a gravy train for the next 17 years. $35/month for onsite storage is a DEAL in my town. --173.19.xx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by AllyM [NJ]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 6:06 AM

I have a lot of stuff. I've got the parents old furniture and the collections and my hobbies and the boxes I save for the things I sell on Ebay. A box can run six bucks for pity sake! Then seven years of files for the running of the rental business. You get the picture in a 1400 square foot house.

I think you have to leave them alone unless they are causing a problem to the running of the unit, like the vents covered.

I had one who had the entire back yard covered with scrap metal, extension cords suspended in the air running to a shed which he caused a fire in by throwing hot coals in there. That's when I tried to evict him and paid him to leave. When it's dangerous you have to move on them.

By the way, I have always hated Matt Lauer since he interviewed the little Olympic athletes by asking them questions about how they would overcome previous injuries on the days there were going to compete and demoralizing them. I am glad he got caught at something else evil. --73.33.xxx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 6:35 AM


Your reply made me think of the reason I removed all baseboard heaters from rental houses. They always were covered with furniture and then the lack of heat complaints during the winter months. I then installed electric heaters recessed inside a wall cavity about 4ft. off the floor.

Now, if you provide a storage shed for your tenants, they will fill it up quickly and then be asking for more storage sheds. When you can't provide more storage space, then the junk begins appearing in the yard. And when they move or get evicted, this junk does not go with them.

Next week, I am getting a Writ of Poss. and I am dreading what I may have to move to the curb. This tenant has at least 8 mounted deer head trophies and I hope he takes these and his 6x8 ft. big screen TV with him. It amazes me what some people spend money on. --68.63.xxx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by RB [MI]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 6:39 AM

Some shut down the Storage Unit and move

everything to the Rental Home. --71.13.xx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 7:12 AM


There are vacant houses in my town in which people do nothing with but store worthless junk inside them. --68.63.xxx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by S i d [MO]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 7:43 AM

Roy, do you do the 2-minute in-home visit as part of your screening process? Hoarders rarely start hoarding overnight. You should be catching these folks before move-in, if you don't want them. Go see where they live. Look, smell..

Yes, often folks do "grow to fill their space", but at least by having a shed I get paid extra for their "growth". There is no difference between a tenant who packs a house full vs. one who packs a house and one of my sheds full, except I'm getting $35 more rent per month. If they don't take all of their "treasures" out of the shed when they leave, my handyman can clear an 8x8 in less than an hour for $40. I still come out ahead if they stay at least 2 months. --173.19.xx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by LindaJ [NY]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 7:47 AM

I draw the line at a safety issue, or a health issue (like old food, wrappers, mildewed stuff) As long as they can get to the doors, windows, radiators and appliances, breaker boxes etc, and it isn't piled to the ceiling, I don't care. As long as it isn't boxes of smelly stuff or vermin attracting, I don't care. Everyone lives differently. I don't try to control how my tenant's live, only preserve my investment in the building.

Then again, I can't say much, lots of "antiques" cluttering up my house, and the drop zone for the mail and stuff that will be put away later, husbands stacks of DVDs and books and don't even go into the sewing / craft room! My basement and garage AND barn are filled with stuff that I might use, tools, and larger projects. I have to move machinery to get at machinery. --96.236.xx.xx

Hoarding ? (by Busy, busy, busy [WI]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 9:33 AM

I've been helping one tenant that tends to let family and friends drop stuff off in her basement (usually accompanied by a short duration of them couch surfing, which she doesn't tolerate for long.)

I've given her the flier from my city's recycling center multiple times, have hauled a piece or two for her in the pick up. I've also given her a bin to put old clothes in so I can take them home to wash and donate to charity. (Several loads of good clothes so far. Kids clothes I donate to local daycare, especially socks, undies, mittens.)

Also made sure she has an extra recycling bin, and over the years have given guidelines.

Slowly, it's helping. But, I think her nature is that of clutter bug. ( ummm, mine too.) I inherited this tenant when I bought the house, and while id prefer a bit less stuff in the small house, she's got more positive attributes as a tenant. So, it's worth the gentle nudging.

I agree with getting right on tenants about safety issues, heat/venting issues. Whenever I've brought that up with any tenant, it's received well. Shows I care. (Hey, injured tenants don't pay rent. I care about rent, lol!) --172.56.xx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Roy [AL]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 3:56 PM


It is tough to do in-home visits during the application process when your applicants are from another state. These tenants came from Pennsylvania. --68.63.xxx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Sisco [MO]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 4:09 PM

Roy, I have had out of state inspections with pictures done by realtors for $50. I paid them for their service via PayPal. --72.172.xxx.xx

Hoarding ? (by Rocking Bear [FL]) Posted on: Nov 29, 2017 8:23 PM

They might not be hoarders if they just moved from out of state. They might be living in a much smaller footprint now then they were, just another perspective. --71.55.xxx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Barbara [VA]) Posted on: Nov 30, 2017 3:06 AM

To some degree the "hoarding" may be a personal perception.

I have a "hoarder". Trying to sell a place. One of the perspective buyers complained to my agent about a "hoarder". My agent advised me it could be difficult to sell if I do have a hoarder. I went over and inspected the place.

She is a "crafter". No old food, dirty dishes, expired magazines. Just box's and crates stacked all over the living room filled with craft supplies. It's a tiny place with minimal storage. She had a sewing machine in the living room and is obviously into crafts. Older, retired lady. I am not getting rid of her. And don't feel excessive accumulation of things is automatically hoarding. Access to all necessary things such as windows, doors, plumbing electrical panel is there.


Hoarding ? (by Nellie [ME]) Posted on: Nov 30, 2017 6:10 AM

LindaJ sounds just like me. A flat surface problem! --64.222.xxx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Lynda [TX]) Posted on: Nov 30, 2017 8:26 AM

True hoarding is a type of mental illness. The person may hoard for a variety of reasons:

-The searching for-and procuring of-THINGS is an activity that provides a distraction and keeps the person from dwelling on something unpleasant in their life. This gets worse as time goes by because the person never deals with the orig problem.

-The accumulation of things is a substitution for something or someone missing in the person's life and they try to fill that hole with things. This gets worse as time goes by because the person never deals with the orig problem.

-The person lived in a situation where they had little control of their lives, and now by hoarding they have found something they can control. They can buy or find things to hold on to and no one can stop them. It gives them a feeling of freedom they never had--to be able to choose what to acquire and how long to keep it. This gets worse as time goes by, especially if people are trying to control the worst of the hoarding. The person only sees that their only freedom is being stripped away from them. To them it is a cruelty and they will aggressively resist.

-The person becomes a 'hoarder' without meaning to because they have lost the ability to distinguish between what is good or bad, what is right or wrong, what is trash and garbage. They can't throw out anything so they keep everything. Uneaten food in pots on the stove, fast food wrappers, even unflushed toilets. This is where you have rotting food and garbage drawing rats and roaches.

These damaged people have found a "work-around" that starts out working FOR them, but escalates into extremes that work against them. Soon, the hoarding is all that they have in their lives. They lose spouses, children, grandchildren, friends, jobs, homes, everything. It is hard to be a friend or relative and watch someone go downhill and you can't help them.

It is truly a mental illness, and cleaning up the property will not help them until psychiatrist can find the reason and provide relief or a dif outlet. Or even a mental hospital where they and their living area is kept clean and they have clean food to eat. --108.87.xx.xxx

Hoarding ? (by Wilma [PA]) Posted on: Nov 30, 2017 6:05 PM

That idea of paying a realtor to do the out-of-the-area in-home visit is brilliant! --99.203.xx.xx

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