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The mission of the Hamilton County Hoarding Collaborative is to provide a fair and standardized approach to working with people in hoarding situations, while providing resources, education, and guidance to the community. Download our Hamilton County Hoarding Collaborative Brochure here.


How Can I Tell If I am a Hoarder?

  • Avoid throwing away possessions (common hoarded items are newspapers, magazines, paper and plastic bags, cardboard boxes, photographs, household supplies, food, and clothing);
  • Experience severe anxiety about discarding possessions;
  • Have trouble making decisions about organizing possessions;
  • Anxious about others touching possessions;
  • Obsessive thoughts about possessions (e.g., fear of running out of an item and needing it later—checking the garbage to see what was discarded ) ;
  • Functional impairments (e.g., loss of living space, no place to eat, sleep or cook), and social isolation.


Where Do I Start?

  1. Decide to start NOW .
  2. Involve others who care about you and your situation.
  3. Develop a plan and set goals.
  4. Be patient – Your problems were not created overnight and they are not going to be fixed overnight.
  5. Make three piles, one room at a time.
    1. Donate —items should be donated the same day.
    2. Put away—items to keep.
    3. Discard —items should be discarded the same day.


How Do I Help Others Whom I Feel Might be Hoarders?

  • Don’t use judgmental language – match their language; don’t use words that devalue their possessions .
  • Make positive suggestions — highlight their strengths.
  • Avoid touching their possessions —let them do the work and make the decisions .
  • Focus on safety first — ensure that all utilities are on, there are adequate pathways throughout the home, HVAC registers are clear and working, and smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are available and working .
  • Involve as many family and friends as you can .
  • Refer to other agencies (in our brochure).




bed_bugBed bugs

Although they are unpleasant, bed bugs are not known to carry or transmit diseases. However, it is understandable that people would be concerned when they find the bugs in their home or bites on their body. We are available to help them determine the best way to get rid of the problem and to work with landlords if necessary.  More…



Certain conditions are critical indicators of imminent danger to the healthful residential environment and present a potential health emergency.

Critical indicators may include:

  • Nonfunctional toilets
  • Water off
  • Electricity off
  • Sewer back-ups in basements
  • Sufficient trash blocking access to life-squad gurney

For their own health, occupants are not permitted to live in a dwelling that has been condemned. Occupants may choose live with a friend, relative or neighbor. HCPH may provide information about staying at a homeless shelter.

For more information call the Environmental Health Division at 513-946-7847.


Additional Resources