According to the American Psychiatric Association, Hoarding is a disorder that makes it extremely difficult for them to discard or give items away. Hoarding behavior differentiates from those of collecting because the things saved often impede natural living spaces. Most individuals with hoarding tendencies don’t organize the items. Hoarding is often associated with older individuals who also suffer from anxiety and/or depression.

Hoarding takes a toll on someone’s physical space as well as their personal relationships. Finally, when it comes time to get rid of a home full of many items, it can be extremely overwhelming. Whether you’re inheriting the property from a family member or trust, or you’re dealing with an investment property occupied by a tenant, handling this type of home can be difficult.

Why it's hard to sell a hoarder home

Selling a hoarder home comes with unique selling problems.

Interior photos aren’t an option:  Listing the home can be difficult. If the house is still full of items, taking photos of the property will be futile. It’s hard to showcase the features of a home if it’s blocked by someone’s personal belongings.

Stains and other cleanups: If you’re able to remove all most items from a house, you’ll likely face problems with handling dirt, dust, mildew, mold, and other unpleasant issues. In some cases, you may have to handle animal feces. Cleaning and selling these homes can take a lot of time money.

You can’t hold an open house: It’s impossible to let potential buyers tour a home that’s full of items. Sometimes it’s unsafe. Other times, it’s just impractical. Most buyers don’t want to tour a house full of belongings, mainly when it can obstruct their ability to see the home’s potential.

Open houses could also be unsafe.

It’s embarrassing: Individuals trying to sell their homes could feel overwhelmed and embarrassed. While many people seek help and may want to move on, the idea of having other people come into their space and judge them is enough to scare many potential sellers away.

What you'll need to do to sell a hoarder home

Before you can sell a hoarder home, there are a few things you must do.

The tenant should be gone from the home: Before the house is sold, you’ll want to have the tenant (even if they own the property) out of the home. If you’re dealing with an inheritance, this isn’t likely an issue. However, if your tenant is a renter, you may need to hire a professional to come in and help you work with the tenant to get them someplace safer. Ideally, you should get help from healthcare professionals before you turn to legal or law enforcement options.

Have the home inspected: In the most severe cases, a home can be condemned. This may happen if a hoarder has numerous pets or the house has suffered structural damage from the weight of their items. An inspection can help you get a better picture of what you need to work on before listing the home.

Clean the property thoroughly: You should hire a professional company specializing in hoarder properties to help clean. You can even hire companies to come and remove items from the house.

Assess the damage:  Once the home is emptied, you’ll want to assess the damage. You’ll need to replace paint, flooring, toilets, countertops, cupboards, and appliances in many cases. You may need to do more extensive repairs if there are any foundation, electrical, or plumbing issues.

Make repairs and sell: You can now begin repairing any damage and cleaning the home up for resale.

You have options

If handling a hoarder home feels too overwhelming, you can sell the house for cash. At Brick, we purchase homes in any condition. We buy properties sight unseen. You won’t need to worry about cleaning out the home or making repairs. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, call us today and let us discuss how we can help you move on from this property.

If you or someone you know suffers from a mental health condition, and you need help, call the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration’s Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.

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