- assess if you need protective clothing, shoes & good quality face masks
- be disciplined & systematic
- handball it to an organising specialist if you can’t face doing it or seem to be going “around in circles”
We recently cleared out a home that was full to the brim with years of possessions – its owner (Bob) had recently passed away. His family were remote & daunted by the task of sorting out everything within. A bio-team had already been on site to clean hazardous areas & the estate lawyer recommended the family contact allsorters about getting the home sorted & cleared & ready for sale.
The family were so apologetic about the state of the house – I had to calm them down & explain that this “is what we do” – allsorters have sorted houses that others said were “unsortable”!
As there were expectations of valuables within the home, we needed to ensure no valuables were mistakenly thrown out as rubbish or donated.
It is easy to be overwhelmed when you visit a home where entry to rooms is difficult. Obviously Bob had not thrown out anything in years, & slowly rooms had turned into storage areas – it looked like some rooms had been closed for years.
Where to start – we tackled it the same as we tackle every house … bit by bit, layer by layer, room by room, unearthing one layer at a time. We follow our proven process – we sort as we go, putting like with like, removing obvious rubbish & then reporting back to the family. Sadly, many items had deteriorated after being buried for decades, exposed to damp, etc. However, we found jewellery, cash worth approx $8,000, some collectibles, particularly in the garage. We also donated approx 9 cubic metres of stuff to charity & recycled as much as possible.
Some tips for anyone sorting out a house themselves:
- Take care you don’t throw money out – I have found money in the most unlikely places. Makes me wonder how much money has ended up in the tip?
- If you appoint someone else to handle it, find out how they work – are they committed to recycling & donating, or do they just send it all to the tip
- Make sure you protect yourself – gloves, clothing, footwear, dust masks
- If you are doing it yourself, be disciplined about it as it is easy to become demotivated & to just start tossing stuff
- If you’ve been sorting out a house for months & months, it may be time to handball it to a professional team – we can usually get a house cleared & sorted within a week, often within 2-4 days. You can then get back to your life …
Happy sorting … Mary