HOA How to Handle Hoarders
Dealing with hoarders can be quite delicate – and for property managers, HOAs and landlords, hoarders can pose a bigger challenge. Since hoarding is considered a mental illness, the Fair Housing Act protects hoarders, despite the obvious sanitary and security issues involved. Also read: Can a HOA Exclude People?
Here are four tips for handling hoarders in your condo community:
Understand the responsibilities of each party: The HOA is required to ensure that the community is habitable and the residents are also expected to maintain a clean and sanitary condominium unit in most states. Ensure that these requirements are included in your CC&Rs or leases. See: Top 5 Philadelphia HOA Board Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
Contact the hoarder immediately: If you suspect one of your condo residents of being a hoarder, you should talk to them about it before it gets out of hand. The resident might have a legitimate reason for the clutter and you might even be able to resolve it together.
Keep everything documented: If things become bad, there might be need for you to take action against the condo owner / residents if their hoarding becomes problematic. You’ll need to keep everything documented to help you build the HOA Board’s case. Take videos and pictures of the clutter, and keep copies of every communication.
Consider taking action against the owner: Nobody really wants to deal with a legal action, however if the presence of the hoarder is going to bring harm to your HOA Association or the other condo residents, then you might have no other choice. Legal action can be quite messy, so make sure you follow all the laid down procedures.
If you notice one of the condo residents displaying hoarding tendencies, you might have to bring in additional support. You can employ the services of a property manager to help you handle any issue you might have with the residents or property.