Hoarding Woes: Weekend & Long Term Strategy

The weekend strategy is fairly positive. We will gather together all the pallets on the property and take them via a friend’s trailer to a nearby place where they recycle old pallets (massive chipper and use the wood pulp of other purposes). I need to contact a neighbor, who knows the location for the recycler.

Much of the stuff in the carport, patio and the driveway/backyard/sideyard was stored atop wooden pallets. In the end, no amount of plastic tarps, plywood or pallets could prevent the decay of the stuff that sat there from 10-20+ years.

On the heels of the pallets going away there is more scrap metal to be removed. Last weekend we came upon a lot of metal, much of which for inexplicable reasons was shoved into an attic of the garage. So far this week, the Team has removed two loads via a trailer and are in excess of 3,000 pounds. They still have remaining metal for a third load. That will bring the total close to 8,000 pounds of scrap metal…4 tons!! What is so ironic about this is that while I perused my Aunt’s hoarding mess last year and cleaned up the driveway and back yard areas there was almost no hint of this stuff buried about the yard under other stuff. Her preoccupation with black wrought iron is amazing. By contrast, my mom’s hoarding home didn’t yield but maybe a hundred pounds of scrap metal.

Partial view of back yard last Summer as we worked into each pile.

 Once the scrap metal and pallets are out, a drop box is to be delivered early afternoon tomorrow. So, the clock will be ticking to get the Team there early, yard out the pallets and scrap metal and then take delivery of the drop box. The remaining garbage, debris, mess and gunk will be gathered outside and tucked away in what may be one of the last drop boxes for here. There may be a need for one down the road after sales but I think we are nearing (knock on a pallet) the end of drop boxes for awhile. That will be eight in just the last month since my Aunt’s death. A total of 19, I believe, and as many or more at my mom’s. Amazing amounts of debris and the removal via the drop box is a considerable expense to factor in + manpower and time. 

Last weekend, an effort was made to push into the basement. The access was pretty much blocked in all directions at the bottom of the stairs. Much remains to be done in the basement, with there being actual garbage and debris. Beyond that there are a gazillion boxes, bags and piles of clothing to go through. Box by box, bag by bag the sorting and decision making will continue. Always in the back of our mind is "Thank God! We did not have to do this with Auntie holding court" Of course, there is that sense she is watching so some decisions are made with her sensibilities in mind 🙂

Sorting and staging the stuff outside for sale will take time. Continuing to clean inside and sort stuff for sale or donations will now become a huge task. The months ahead will be slightly less focused on cleanup and more on pricing, staging, and holding sale after sale. Somewhere amidst all this that storage locker has to be emptied and transported here which will not be psychologically pleasant. We will have gained space and normalcy only to reintroduce a bunch of the same repetitive stuff. Maybe a better alternative will present itself to us at some point.