Humanizing Hoarder Disorder

By Jennifer Hanzlick2018 Education Conference & Trade Show Speaker


Most people get their information about hoarding disorder from the TV show where the individual is surrounded by piles and piles of things and the drama letting go of anything is portrayed. In reality, the homes may look the same but the people and the methods of helping them are drastically different.

According to statistics, up to 5% of the population suffer from hoarding disorder. In the Denver- metro area that would be 150,000 people. Hoarding is a very common issue and most people don’t like talking about it. It is extremely challenging to the individual who is suffering, the family, friends, neighbors and the community.

Hoarding disorder was only listed as a diagnosis in the DSM 5- Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder in 2013. However, more researchers and experts are focusing on this as a mental illness.

Many people assume that someone with a home full of stuff is “a hoarder”. Someone who may be lazy, stubborn, or unclean. However, hoarding disorder is a serious and complex mental illness and these individuals do not want to live silently, suffering behind closed doors.

With 10 years of experience, Jennifer and her team know that these individuals are not lazy and stubborn. Underneath the exterior they are smart, educated, caring, generous, and humorous. They are battling a mental illness. And with the right support they can improve their lives and their surroundings.

Jennifer and her team know that their clients are not “hoarders”. A Hoarder is not their identity. They all have past lives, families, and future dreams.

Once you get to know the person for who they really are, you’ll see that there is hope for better way to live. Just because a person has a cluttered home does not mean they have hoarding disorder. Sometimes due to physical or mental limitations an individual may just need help to help maintain their home. With the right resources in place a home can remain organized, clean and safe.

Because people do not understand hoarding disorder, there is a such shame and stigma associated with those who are struggling. This results in isolation and fear. These individuals need compassion, non- judgement and support.

Jennifer and team are trained to help their clients with their emotions, their physiology and the practical aspects of helping someone make their space compliant and safe. Clutter Trucker can help sort, organize and remove large accumulations of “stuff”, in a compassionate and caring way. 

Hoarding Screenshot