The Emotional Challenges of Inheriting a Hoarded House

Often described as a trauma far worse than the funeral arrangements, probate, and grief, inheriting a hoarded house can leave family members in dire straights emotionally if support is not sought.

Overwhelmed by the enormity of the task, family members are faced with a tremendous amount of physical and mental stress. Feelings of anger, shame, and guilt become unbearable for some. And for many, they experience crippling financial costs and lost wages due to extended time off work, thus compounding their stress. Support resources are crucial to help get through this difficult challenge.

For those who are currently struggling with emotional distress from an inherited hoarding situation,  understanding that you are not alone is an important first step. Literally thousands of family members are affected every day. It is estimated that between two to five per cent of the Canadian population has a Compulsive Hoarding Disorder.

In the U.S. alone, it is estimated that between 700,000 to 1.4 million people suffer from Compulsive Hoarding Disorder.The list below are some great support resources:

If you find yourself in this dilemma and need assistance finding support in the Niagara Region, I would be happy to help. Email me at

Books on hoarding and other website resources: