Is There A Hoarder On Your Street? Here's How To Be A Good Neighbor When The Dumpster Finally Shows Up

Posted on: 11 May 2016

If you have a neighbor whose yard or home is filled with trash and junk, you've probably been waiting for the day when a dumpster shows up so they can clean up the eyesore. One day, your neighbor's family may intervene or the town might order a cleanup and the dumpster will arrive. Here's how to be a good neighbor and handle the situation so the cleanup goes as smoothly as possible.

Don't gawk.

A roll off container being maneuvered into position can be a welcome sight, especially when the messy yard has been a problem in the neighborhood for a long time. However, standing around and staring does not add to the cleanup efforts. An "audience" only adds pressure to an already stressful situation. Remember that they only have the dumpster for a limited amount of time and they know when it will be picked up – trust that they will get the job done as fast as they can.

Stay polite and cordial.

Watching one's possessions - even if other people consider them trash - going into a dumpster can be difficult for almost anyone. If the person has a clinical hoarding disorder, it can be a very emotional event for everyone involved.  Even if you are truly astounded at the amount of junk they own or how fast the dumpster is filling, insults and expressions of disbelief are not constructive. A hoarder in a fragile emotional state needs to stay focused on the task at hand. Don't cause them additional anxiety, which will only slow them down.

Don't interfere.

Even though the person's yard and property affects the whole neighborhood, remember that the condition of their home may be an issue within the family. They may view your curiosity or even your offer to help as prying or interfering with a family matter. Emotions may be running high, so don't offer advice, don't ask why they are or aren't disposing of something and don't ask if you can throw anything in their dumpster. Interfering won't help and will probably just slow things down.

Hoarders, savers and yard junk collectors can create tension among neighbors. However, when cleanup day finally comes, everyone can make the situation better by being good neighbors and letting the family handle things their own way. Not only will the property look better when the cleanup is done and the dumpster is hauled away, but the event can also inspire everyone else to get rid of their clutter and trash. If the incident makes you want to clean out your own garage or yard before it gets out of control, consider renting your own roll-off dumpster