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Signs You Are On The Road To Becoming a Hoarder

Updated on February 19, 2017
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You’ve seen the TV show. Some people see the TV show and still don’t realize they have active symptoms that reflect hoarding. There are several signs to look for that will show if you have the symptoms associated with hoarding

Your grandma may have table cloths from the time she first bought her house, and that was 60 years ago. Your granddad may have kept every single screw and bolt he ever used, and that was 75 years ago.

I love cats. Anybody whose ever read any of my hubs know this. However, more than three is considered too much. And if you have rooms in your house that only cats live in, then that would be considered more than three.

To the people out there that may have rooms filled with stuff they don't use.To the people out there that have boxes of stuff and they don't know what's in them. To the people out there who can't really discern which room they're sitting in right now. Here are some signs that will show you are on the road to becoming a hoarder.

Pack Rat

Being labeled the pack rat by friends, family, acquaintances, and the police when someone trips over the stuff in your home and impels themselves, is a sign. These are the signs you are on the road to becoming a hoarder.

However, below is listed the major signs that show that you are on the road to being a hoarder.


The Signs


  • Refusing to throw away things you’re not using
  • Refusing to admit you aren’t using the things you won’t throw away
  • In a constant state of denial about the things that are in the boxes, baskets, or bags that you claim you’re using and won’t throw away
  • Placing the things you won’t throw away that are in boxes, baskets, or bags that you claim you're using in certain rooms
  • Filling room after room with the things in boxes, baskets, or bags that you claim you’re using and won't throw away
  • Having the boxes, baskets, or bags with the things you claim you’re using that you won’t throw away all over the house
  • Seeing cobwebs and dust build-up on all the boxes, baskets, or bags with the things you claim you are using that you won’t throw away
  • Getting angry when someone asks you about helping you get rid of the boxes, baskets, or bags of the things you claim you’re using and won’t throw away
  • Going into a rage when someone borrows something in one of the boxes, baskets, or bags of things that you claim you’re using and won’t throw away
  • Continuously buying and getting things and placing them in the boxes, baskets, or bags and setting the boxes, baskets, or bags where the other boxes, baskets, or bags are with the things in them that you claim you’re using and won’t throw away
  • Having to maneuver around the boxes, baskets, or bags of the things that you claim you’re using and won’t throw away
  • Getting up in the morning and having to make a path to the bathroom by moving or walking on top of the boxes, baskets, or bags of the things that you claim you’re using and won’t throw away
  • You can’t see the floor, carpet, wall, or out the windows of any room in your home because of the boxes, baskets, or bags of the things that you claim you’re using and won’t throw away


Signs Someone You Know May Be a Hoarder

Some people don't really know when they should speak up. That's a common problem I've recognized on these shows. This is the moment of realization for you.

The list below are the signs that indicate when you should say something about the things your friend or family owns that are cluttering up their home.


Signs Someone You Know May Be Turning Into a Hoarder


  • You go over to their house and you can barely get in the door
  • You have to push over boxes, baskets, or bags of things to get inside the home
  • You can't see them in there but you can hear them
  • All you can see are the boxes, baskets, or bags; no furniture
  • You try to walk in there and you're stepping on the boxes, baskets, or bags
  • You look down and you'e not sure what you're stepping on
  • You can't see the floor or carpet
  • It's dark, you can't see the windows or walls
  • You hear them somewhere in the house, but you still can't see them
  • You turn around and knock things down beside you and the things beside that
  • You can't move beyond the spot you're in
  • You get frustrated and ask if they think they might want to get rid of some of this stuff
  • They threaten to not be your friend anymore or to cut you (keep in mind, you can only hear them at this point)

Yeah these are sure fire signs of the beginning of a serious problem. So, it is here that you should take some action.

Last Note

Pack rat. This is the term used for an amateur hoarder. People who keep things and don't really know why. Letting things go is easier said than done.

So, if anyone knows anyone that's keeping things that they're doing nothing with in dozens of boxes, baskets, or bags and they cry or get frustrated at the idea of getting rid of these things, or threaten to call the police on you if you try to take these things out of the house, or they dig out their shot-gun and point it at you, or try to bite you for moving their things; you should suggest they are on the road to being a hoarder and get them some help.

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    • SonQuioey10 profile image
      Author

      Toni Northern 5 years ago from Williamston NC

      I have an aunt with boxes all over house. I don't know if she is collecting or what.

    • profile image

      lisa.bom 5 years ago

      Interesting! Luckily, I am nowhere close to being a hoarder. I throw things away if I haven't used them in one year. I can't imagine having so many things.

    • Cammiebar profile image

      Cammiebar 5 years ago from Upstate New York

      This is very useful! My grandfather is a pack rat and, luckily, his wife was able to make his decisions for him about throwing things away. But you have to watch yourself, sometimes. But this makes me think of a question: What is the difference between hoarding and collecting?

      Because some collectors will put their pieces in one room, and fill the room entirely, or pack their collection in boxes everywhere.

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