Evicting hoarders - Page 3

Excessive collection of stuff is a mental disability, but legal protections for these renters are often ignored

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An anonymous San Francisco hoarder has been unsuccessfully seeking help to deal with her cluttered home.
GUARDIAN PHOTO BY LINDA MAN

But San Francisco does offer places such as the MHA conference to discuss the issue. Hoarders' Dr. Zasio says the show helps the people who are willing to go on TV. In exchange for going public, the network pays for six months aftercare, including services such as home repairs and therapy sessions. Although the network recognizes that it gains ratings by sensationalizing the condition for 44 minutes, it also wants to raise public awareness.

Of the 1,370 evictions in San Francisco in the past year, 442 cases were prompted by a breach of rental agreement and 271 cases were for committing a nuisance. These cases could include hoarding, but the city doesn't specify that in its statistics.

As Teresa Friend from the Homeless Advocacy Project said: "If the person with a disability including hoarding is without family or friends to turn to or is not part of a legal intervention process and evicted, they will end up homeless."

 

Comments

I am the manager of a single residence occupancy apartment building on Third Street. In my experience, hoarders say they want help and say they will clean up, but it is simply talk. They have no intention of changing their living situation. If you had a choice between cleaning your apartment or being evicted which option would you choose?

The citizens of this community must come to agree that these people aren't making adult decisions, and someone will have to be appointed, probably by a judge, to manage hoarders lives, and get them to make healthier choices. We must accept that hoarding is a symptom of a larger problem, bad decsion making. Hoarding is simply one manifestation of the problem.

Posted by Guest on May. 10, 2011 @ 9:05 am

I have known some hoarders and it is definetely a symptom of depression and responding to a trauma, not OCD. Just like some people drink, do drugs, or eat out of control, these people collect. Whether it's trinkets, boxes, hangers, or even cats and dogs, there is something inside them that can't let go for fear of the loss itself. It isn't fair for the landlord, family, and especially the hapless pets, but these people need treatment. They need to see a psychologist and get involved with a support group or counsler otherwise they will keep repeating the behavior and wind up either homeless or buried under a pile of old newspapers.

Posted by chelsea on May. 20, 2011 @ 2:51 pm