America-Recycles-Day-logo

America Recycles Day

Annually, America Recycles Day® takes place on or around November 15th, as part of the government’s “Keep America Beautiful” campaign. Their goal? To educate, motivate and make recycling bigger and better.

“America Recycles Day is the only nationally-recognized day dedicated to promoting and celebrating recycling in the United States,” states the website. It encourages and educates people on how to be more mindful about what they consume, where and how to properly recycle, and to pledge to recycle more on a daily basis.

According to the EPA, the current rate of recycling has increased to 32%, as compared to 7% in the 1960s.

How did America Recycles Day Begin?

In 1994, two employees of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality suggested the special day to the Nation Recycling Coalition to bring awareness of recycling. It was accepted and the first America Recycles Day was held on November 15, 1994, with 40 states involved.

Benefits of Recycling

It is important that we do our part to help keep our planet healthy. Programs like America Recycles Day and the Great American Cleanup® strive to reduce littering, improve recycling and beautify communities across the United States. The many benefits of recycling include:

  • Less delivered to landfills
  • Conservation of natural resources
  • Decrease in the burning of fossil fuels, leading to a reduction in the emission of greenhouse gasses.

Because fossil fuels are used to create single-use plastic, the process of extracting and creating these plastics emit 12.5 to 1.5 million metric tons of greenhouse gasses. Single-use plastics in landfills also account for 15% of methane emissions. (source: University of Colorado Boulder Environmental Center)

How You Can Recycle Year-Round

The average person can generate about 4.8 pounds of trash each day, while an avid recycler who recycles 75% of their discarded items generates just 1.12 pounds of trash each day. So you can see how recycling makes a difference.

Ways to mindfully recycle include:

  • Recycling at home, school, work or on the go
  • Purchasing products created with recycled content
  • Using re-usable items like grocery bags and water bottles
  • Repurposing items
  • Educating and encouraging friends, family, co-workers and others
  • Sending recyclable items to local recycling centers

123JUNK’s Mission of Recycling

When we started 123JUNK, we incorporated our 1-2-3-step process of Donate-Recycle-Dispose into our mission. It wasn’t that we just wanted to differentiate ourselves from other junk haulers, we had a true passion for helping our environment. We still do.

We encourage people to recycle items in two ways:

  1. Donate. If you have perfectly-good items around your house that you no longer need or want, they don’t belong in the landfill. Others may be able to use them. That’s why we hand-picked charity partners to which we deliver these items to be recycled back into the community. They are always looking for furniture, household goods, working electronics and other items that they can either provide to local families in need or sell in their stores to raise money for their causes. Check out our list of charity partners we work with.
  2. Recycle. There are items that don’t belong in a landfill because they contain metals or hazardous chemicals. That’s why your communities have local recycling centers. When 123JUNK makes a pickup at your location, we look for any items that either cannot be donated or don’t belong in the landfills and cull them out for delivery to the recycling center. Things like electronics (e-waste), refrigerators and air conditioners all can be broken down into their components and their hazardous contents handled properly. Paper, glass, metals and plastics can often also be recycled. Read our blog post on the Dangers of E-Waste.

Contact 123JUNK

On America Recycles Day—or any other day of the year—look to 123JUNK to help you fulfill your recycling goals. We’ll be glad to clear out the junk from your home or office and deliver it to its proper location. It’s our way of helping our community and our environment.

To speak with a representative, get an all-inclusive price and schedule your junk hauling in Northern Virginia, Maryland or Washington DC, contact 123JUNK at 1-800-364-5778 or fill out our online form.

three boxes lined up next to each other

11 Items to Throw Out Right Now

Whether you live in a big house or a compact condo, there are probably items you no longer need or can use. So why are they still cluttering up your home? By clearing them out, you open up space in your life for other good things to enter. Here are 11 things you need to throw out right now.

Broken Items

If an item has been broken or damaged and you think that you will fix it one day, you probably won’t—like that chipped platter or table with a splintered leg. It will sit there taking up space and reminding you that you haven’t yet completed that task. Clear it out.

Mismatched Items

Be honest. Do you have a box with single socks without a mate? Or bowl lids without a bowl? Give these items a time limit and after several days or weeks without a match, toss them.

I-May-Need-This Items

Believe it or not, you may have hundreds of items around your house that you “might need someday” but haven’t touched in 20 years. If you think you will need an item within the next 6 months, keep it. Otherwise, out they go. If you do need it, it is easily bought.

Duplicate Items

Looking through your kitchen drawers, do you have six wooden spoons and four wire whisks. How many do you really need? Sift through your belongings to uncover duplicates and donate them to a local charity where people who have none can use them.

Items that Don’t Fit

Face it. You’ve been holding onto those Size 8 pants for years now, believing you will one day be able to fit into them again. Chances are, your body has changed. And so have the styles. Donate the clothes that are too small (or too big) and open the doors for getting new items when you reach your fitness goals. It will give you an incentive!

Items You Never Use, Or Never Will

How often have you taken home a freebie and tossed it into a drawer? How many pairs of shoes do you own that haven’t seen the light of day in years? How about stacks of books you haven’t gotten around to reading? These items are just taking up space—physically, visually and mentally. It’s time to recycle them to a better home!

Expired Items

You’d be surprised how many herbs, spices, medications, and other items with an expiration date are WAY past their prime. Some of these can become dangerous if ingested. Take an afternoon to sort out the past-due items and throw them out. Dispose of medications and drugs in the proper way. Don’t flush them down the toilet or put them into the trash can.

Craft Items from a Long-Abandoned Hobby

Does your spare room closet hold boxes of sewing materials, yarn, or scrapbooking supplies? When is the last time you crafted with them? If that hobby has gone by the wayside, so should the craft supplies.

Items from Another Life

Are you still storing items from childhood, a previous marriage, or your single life? Has your pet passed away, yet you still have its feeding dishes and bed? Are you now retired and no longer need a set of work clothes? It’s time to toss to make room in your life for the items that reflect your life right now.

Trash Items

If you’re like most people, you have piles of papers or receipts you’ve been meaning to shred, or junk mail or old newspapers and magazine you’ve intended to go through. Empty your wastebaskets and your space by throwing these items into the recycling bin or trash container.

Live Better With Less

Research shows that clutter is linked to higher levels of stress, and can even lead to overeating and weight gain. With less clutter, your home with be healthier and more beautiful. And you will have more time since you aren’t burdened by the emotional or physical labor of taking care of these items. Make it a habit to only purchase what you need at the moment and you’ll free up finances as well.

Throw Out Items the Easy Way with 123JUNK

Want an easy way to get rid of these must-toss items? If you’re in Northern Virginia, Maryland or Washington, DC, contact 123JUNK. Not only will be pick up and dispose of your castoffs, we’ll donate what can be reused and recycle things like metal and paper. It’s part of our 1-2-3 Process of Donate-Recycle-Dispose. It’s a win-win! You get to clear out your home and we get to help others like our charity partners succeed. We’ll even provide you with a receipt for your donations so you can claim the donation on your tax return!

Contact 123JUNK today to schedule your junk removal.

landfill-global-warming

Landfills Contribute to Global Warming

There are more than 1,250 landfills in the United States, primarily located in the Southern and Western states. And although the number of landfills has decreased significantly since the 1990s, landfills still contribute to global warming more that we would like.

“Municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills are the third-largest source of human-related methane emissions in the United States, accounting for approximately 14.5 percent of these emissions in 2020,
reports the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). “The methane emissions from landfills in 2020 were approximately equivalent to the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from about 20.3 million passenger vehicles driven for one year, or the carbon dioxide emissions from nearly 11.9 million homes’ energy use for one year.”

Landfill Greenhouse Gases Lead to Global Warming

Greenhouse gases are perhaps the biggest environment threat posed by landfills and huge contributors to global warming and climate change. In the U.S., landfills are the 3rd largest source of methane emissions.

The methane gas that landfills produce is about 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide, and a threat to our climate. Their odors can permeate neighborhoods and the gases can produce birth defects, respiratory diseases, headaches, sleeping difficulties and irritation of the eyes, throat and nose for those living near landfills. Methane is also highly flammable and combustible, and can lead to landfill fires that destroy neighboring habitats and pollute the air.

Other Effects of Landfills

More than 254 million tons of waste are tossed into landfills each year. That’s about 4.4 pounds of trash per day per person. When trash is buried in a landfill, it is extremely slow to break down. In addition, pests are attracted, runoff poisons our soil and groundwater, and the land is destroyed for any future purpose. The effects can last for years—and generations.

Electronic waste is added can contain a long list of hazardous toxins including mercury, acids, lead, PVC and cadmium. Other dangerous toxins can come from fertilizers, expired products and pharmaceutical waste.

Related: Land of Waste: American Landfills and Waste Production

How Can You Help Landfills NOT Contribute to Global Warming?

Our mission at 123JUNK has become even more important as our planet is seeing the increased impacts of global warming, where fires, floods, droughts rage through communities, putting lives and futures at risk.

Because we know that landfills contribute to global warming, through our 1-2-3 Process of Donate-Recycle-Dispose, we pledge to keep as much of the items we pick up from your homes and offices out of our area landfills as possible. We separate out the perfectly-good items, or items you want to donate, and deliver them to our hand-picked charitable partners, who provide them to families in need or sell them in their donation centers to raise money for their causes. You don’t need to separate out the items you’ve identified for removal. We’ll do it for you.

After we’ve determined which items we can donate, we’ll divide out recyclable items like bundles of newspapers, books, wood, aluminum, plastics and electronics and deliver those items to the appropriate local recycling centers where their materials can be recycled into other products.

And only when we have exhausted all ways to repurpose your items do we deliver the remainder to the landfills.

Choose 123JUNK for Environmentally-Conscious Junk Removal in NoVA, MD and DC

You can do your bit to help negate global warming by contacting 123JUNK for your home or office junk removal. Donate furniture and household goods. Recycle electronics. And let us help keep landfills from contributing to global warming and climate changes.

Contact 123JUNK today at 1-800-364-5778 to learn more about our donation pickup and delivery services, or to schedule your pick in Northern VA, Washington DC, or Maryland.

woman assisting older woman

7 Tips For Clearing out Grandma’s Stuff

Life happens. And unfortunately, one of the realities of life is the loss of your parents and grandparents. It is a traumatic time filled with many decisions…including “what do we do with grandma’s stuff?” At 123JUNK, we’re here to help make at least that decision easier.

We understand, and are sympathetic to, the emotions that go along with the loss of a loved one, whether it be a parent, grandparent, or any other family member. It something nobody wants to go through, but it is an inevitability of life. That’s why we make sure that when you call, you speak to someone in person…every time. We don’t believe your call should go through an automated answering service.

Emotions not only surround the loss of the person, they emerge again when it’s time to deal with their belongings. And after a lifetime of raising a family, a house can be filled. Having a good way to clean out grandma’s stuff is essential. Here are some tips that can help you navigate that process.

7 Tips for Clearing out Grandma’s Stuff

 

Look for Legal and Financial Documents

Find and preserve any papers or documents that relate to legal, financial or insurance matters. Look in filing cabinets, the office, drawers, and even hidden places. Put these in a safe place where they won’t get tossed out.

Preserve Photographs and Memorabilia

Photographs and items with special memories can’t be replaced. Pack these items up separately and remove them from the sorting areas. Keep them for yourself, or divide these items up among family members as cherished keepsakes. If you no longer want to keep the memorabilia later, you can always take digital photographs and donate the items.

Ask for Help

Going through grandma’s stuff on your own is a huge and stressful tasks. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from family and friends. They’re probably looking for ways to help you navigate through the grief and will be glad to lend a hand. Assign them limited-time shifts to prevent burnout, and remember to take it easy yourself. Emotions will be on high alert.

Sort into Piles

Create a sorting system, and place items into piles marked “Keep,” “Donate,” “Sell,” and “Toss.” For larger items like furniture, use color-coded tags. If items are designated for specific family members, attach a name tag to them and place them aside.

Related: 21 Useful Tips for Cleaning Out Your Elderly Parent’s House

Go Through Everything

People tend to hide valuables in safe spaces, so as you are sorting, open every drawer and box, and check through clothing pockets. Be careful not to get bogged down or stalled in the memories. Keep to the task of sorting and clearing out. You can always set items or boxes aside and go through them later if you need to. A professional organizer can assist you with the overwhelming task of going through everything while keeping on task.

Get Appraisals

If grandma’s stuff includes high-value items like jewelry or artwork that you’d like to sell, hire an appraiser to give you an estimate of its value.

Contact 123JUNK to Donate, Recycle or Dispose of Grandma’s Stuff

From your first call to 123JUNK, you’ll notice is our exemplary customer service. Since everyone’s stuff has memories attached—including grandma’s stuff—we make it a point to treat you and your loved one’s belongings with the utmost courtesy and respect. We’ll listen to what you need and provide you with an easy-to-manage all-inclusive price quote.

You’ll love our 1-2-3 Process of Donate-Recycle-Dispose. We’ll take items that can be reused or repurposed and donate them to our charity partners, who will use them for families in need or sell them to raise money for their causes. We’ll separate out items that can be recycled, like papers, magazines, electronics, and metals, and deliver those to the area recycling station. And since it’s our mission to keep as much out of landfills as possible, we’ll take only what’s left over to the dump.

If you’ve taken the time to sort into “donate” and “toss” piles, simply point us to them. But don’t worry if you haven’t. Our team members are well-trained in sorting items on the spot. Our job is to remove as much stress as possible out of the job of clearing out grandma’s stuff.

When you need to clear out a home in Northern Virginia, Maryland or Washington DC that is filled with a lifetime of memories, contact 123JUNK.

living room with a lit fireplace

Designer Secrets for Home Staging

Thinking of selling your home? Now is a great time! To get top dollar for your home sale, professionals suggest staging it, either by doing it yourself, or hiring a professional staging company. Here are some of the designer secrets for home staging.

The top selling point for a home is, of course, location, location, location. Next in line though, is “curb appeal.” This is not only the first impression when the potential home buyer drives up, it is also the first impressions they receive inside your home. That’s why physical or virtual home staging is so important for both an unoccupied and a currently occupied home.

Things that home buyers love include:

  • Spotlessly clean; clean above, below and around items
  • Light and bright; sunlit; welcoming light colors
  • Large rooms (or the look of being large)
  • Well maintained; buyers don’t want to have to put a lot of work into their home purchase
  • Fresh and current look and feel

Six Designer Secrets for Home Staging

There are six steps to staging your home, according to Karen Prince, an award-winning New York staging professional and author of Secrets of Home Staging (2021). They include:

Repair

Repair any visible and known defects both inside and outside the home.

  • Pro tip: Get a pre-inspection by a qualified home inspector before listing the home. This proves to buyers that the home is in good repair, and outlines selling points like upgrades.

Update

If you have been in your home a while, it probably needs upgrades. Spend a little on cosmetic updates like color, flooring or hardware changes, or remodel for more drastic effect. Key rooms to update are the kitchen and bathrooms.

  • Pro tip: Take down drapes & valances; remove wallpaper; remove wall-to-wall carpet; paint in light neutrals; update lighting; update tiles; change cabinet hardware.

Depersonalize

You must begin thinking of your home as a product to sell, and make it appealing to a broad audience. This mean removing personal items from both the interior and exterior of your home. Pack them for your move and store them off premises if possible.

  • Pro tip: Emotionally disconnect yourself from the home to enable buyers to visualize their own lives in the house.

Remove and store:

  • Personal photos
  • Items with your name on them like college degrees, trophies, awards, etc.
  • Collections from travels, crafts, hobbies, sports, etc.
  • Religious & political items
  • Decorations – front door and exterior; inspirational sayings; statues; decorative items, etc.

Declutter

Your home stager is looking to create clean, neutral lines throughout your home that make it show better in photographs and in person. This means removing all clutter and extra items from rooms, surfaces, shelves, windows, closets, garages and storage areas that could distract a buyer. Box these items up and store them for your move. And don’t forget the lawn items! The decluttering process will also make it easier to live in the home while it’s up for sale.

  • Pro tip: When decluttering, it’s a great time to get rid of items you no longer need or want to take to your new home. Make several piles designated as keep/donate/dispose. For items you want to keep, box them up. For those to donate or dispose of, contact 123JUNK. We’ll be glad to deliver your donations to area donation center, recycle things like paper and electronics, and dispose of unusable items or trash for you.

Deep Clean

A home that looks and smells clean will offer maximum appeal to a potential buyer. You may not notice the dirt in areas you’ve overlooked, but the buyers will! Hire a professional cleaning company, power wash the exterior and deck, and remove or mask odors.

  • Pro tip: Don’t forget to clean the doors, light switches and fixtures, ceiling fans and vents.

Add Style

A professional home stager may relocate your furniture and belongings to create wow-worthy vignettes and a room’s focal point. Many stagers have storerooms of items they can use to stage an unoccupied home. Stick to a neutral palette, but items of color and whimsy are allowed in order to add contrast; an all-beige room is boring. You’ll also want to make each room look larger, and increase the flow by using fewer items. Another reason to declutter!

  • Pro tip: Establish just one purpose for each room, and try to refer to the room’s original intention. For example, if you’re using a child’s room as a home office, revert it back to a child’s room.

To Stage Your Home Beautifully, Get Rid of Unused Goods and Furniture with 123JUNK

For convenient pick-up in MD, NOVA or DC of all those items to donate and trash when you’re ready to stage your home, call 123JUNK. We’ll divide out the perfectly-good items and donate them to our charity partners. We’ll recycle electronics and materials like paper to the local recycling center. And we’ll take only what’s left to the area landfill. It’s our 1-2-3 commitment to Donate-Recycle-Dispose and to protecting our environment.

We work with designers, home stagers, Realtors and homeowners to help remove items from the home. After all, statistics prove that a beautifully-staged home sells faster and for more money.

Contact 123JUNK today to speak with a live representative. We’ll find out more about your junk hauling needs, give you a one-price all-inclusive quote, and schedule your pick-up date.

people moving furniture out of an office

Commercial Office Cleanout Services NOVA, DC, MD

Has your office staff come back to the office, or have you decided that your team can continue working from home and that you no longer need to rent expensive office space? Virtual and remote offices are a new reality! However, the termination of office space leaves you with the question of what to do with all that office furniture, equipment and supplies.

“The impetus for working from home has shifted considerably since 2020,” states a Pew Research Center study. “Nearly two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, roughly six-in-ten U.S. workers who say their jobs can mainly be done from home (59%) are working from home all or most of the time. The vast majority (83%) say they were working from home even before the omicron variant started to spread in the United States.” Their workplace was either closed or unavailable or they simply choose not to work from the workplace, and many relocated away from the area where they used to work and are teleworking.

Commercial Office Furniture Cleanout

Clearing out an office can be a big task. Commercial offices are filled with all types of furniture: desks, chairs, sofas, conference tables, side tables, bookcases, shelving, credenzas, file cabinets, whiteboards, decorative pieces and more. You could go through the trouble of selling these items, either one by one or as a lot; there are plenty of people looking for office furniture bargains. But this takes a lot of time to advertise and arrange.

An alternative is to donate your office furniture. Nonprofit organizations in your community are always in need of furnishings for their own offices, but more importantly, they can put these items into their showrooms for sale to raise money for community-support programs. Your donation will solve the problem of disposing of office furniture and will benefit the community that supports your business.

123JUNK’s commercial office cleanout services can empty your offices in as little as one day. Whether you need to be out quickly after a lease termination, or have a week or even a month to clear out, we can schedule a pickup to help you out. Perhaps you’ve sold some of your office furniture, but have items left over. Consider donating those. We’ll pick them up, deliver them to the charity partners on your behalf, and provide you with a receipt for tax deduction.

Commercial Office Equipment Cleanout

In addition to office furniture, offices have a ton of electronic equipment as well: copy machines, computers and computer accessories, monitors and monitor stands, printers and printer ink, scanners, TVs, fax machines, shredders, routers, telephones, camera equipment, and even kitchen small and large appliances.

The same route of advertising and selling can be taken with office equipment, however, the disposal of these items can be different. Since they contain chemicals and hazardous materials like lead, mercury or beryllium, they cannot be sent to a landfill. If they are not incorporated into another office, they must be either donated to a charity or delivered to an authorized recycling center. (See our post on E-Waste Removal and Disposal.)

Again, 123JUNK is available to assist with the commercial office cleanout services. Whether you have broken items that we can haul to the electronics recycling center, or pieces to donate to your local charity, we make the job easy. Our professional team will load and haul away any office equipment items you no longer want.

123JUNK Commercial Office Cleanout Services in Northern VA, Maryland and Washington DC

When it comes to clearing out commercial spaces, there is a lot to do, often within a short period of time. If this is your situation and your office is located within our service areas of Northern VA, MD and DC, Contact 123JUNK. We’re sure to have a solution to help you!

emotaional-clutter

How to Clear Emotional Clutter

Physical clutter we all understand. It is the accumulation of too much stuff that we can see and feel. Emotional clutter is something altogether different, yet, similar in its own way. It is the accumulation of persistent negative thoughts or thought loops that can clutter our mind and drain our energy. Although you can’t call a junk hauling company (like 123JUNK) to haul it away, the good news is that there are ways to clear emotional clutter.

What is Emotional Clutter?

Emotional clutter is negative thoughts that are deep-seated beliefs about yourself, like “Nobody really loves me,” “I am terribly awkward talking with people,” “I’m not deserving,” or “I can’t do it.” Unfortunately, the more you let them clutter your mind, the deeper these thoughts seat themselves, like a bad habit, or grooves on a record that that plays over and over again.

How to Clear Emotional Clutter

The brain is an amazing instrument that can be reprogrammed. In scientific terms, this is called neuroplasticity, or “the brain’s ability to modify, change and adapt both structure and function throughout life and in response to experience,” according to a Frontiers in Psychology article.

Step One: Identify the Negative Thoughts

Each time you have a negative thought, acknowledge it. Write it down. Notice and record how often it appears. Think to yourself, “Is this really true?”

Step Two: Slowly Make Changes

You can’t just swing your thought to the opposite end of the spectrum. It won’t work. You have to take baby steps and look at the reality of the situation. If your thought is “Nobody really loves me,” take a count of all the people that really do care about you and create a new script like “My spouse and children love me, and I am lovable.” It is OK to also include yourself in those who love you, as in “I love who I am.” Work on one negative thought at a time.

Step Three: Create New Grooves

Every time you have a repeating negative thought, replace it with the new thought. The more you retrain your brain, the fewer times the negative thought will reappear. Consciously repeat the new thought, even when the negative thought isn’t appearing. Say it out loud, and repeat it often, like when you’re taking a walk, driving or in front of the mirror.

Step Four: Be Kind to Yourself

It takes time to reprogram negative thoughts, so be compassionate to yourself and remember your own worth. Create a strong support system of people who can reiterate and reinforce your new, positive thoughts.

Once you are able to clear negative thoughts, you will feel lighter and more freedom than ever before. These thoughts are not facts. They are merely thoughts. Visualize a path to a new outcome and repeat that image until it becomes the new reality. As you clear emotional clutter, you are able to make better decisions about everything, leading to a more joyful and fulfilling life.

Want to know more? Here are several books designed to help clear emotional clutter:

Clearing Emotional Clutter: Mindfulness Practices for Letting Go of What’s Blocking Your Fulfillment and Transformation, by Donald Altman, 2016.

Emotional clutter—the equivalent of a jam-packed closet in your mind—has been proven to block success in professional and personal lives. It can results from hidden pains and traumas and creates toxic patterns. The author helps you identify what you’re holding on to and how to cleanse, heal or accept old wounds, mistakes and disappointments.

Clutter Busting Your Life: Clearing Physical and Emotional Clutter to Reconnect with Yourself and Others, by Brooks Palmer, 2012.

Keeping things you no longer need can keep you from experiencing the joy of connection. The author discusses how we use clutter to protect ourselves, control others and cling to the past, and how to not only clear clutter but enjoy deeper, more authentic relationships.

Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui: Free Yourself from Physical, Mental, Emotional, and Spiritual Clutter Forever, by Karen Kingston, 2016.

This author claims that clutter is stuck energy that has far-reaching effects beyond the stuff, and causing effects to the body, mind, emotions and spirit. She covers why people keep clutter, how it stagnates your life, and how to clear it quickly and effectively.

Clear Clutter in MD, DC and Northern VA with 123JUNK

Did you know that emotional clutter can lead to physical clutter? When you’re ready to clear the clutter out of your home or office, contact 123JUNK. We’ll be glad to remove junk, furniture, appliances, household goods and use our 1-2-3 process to Donate-Recycle-Dispose of them in the best and most eco-friendly ways possible. We’ll also do a complete cleanout of your property if needed.

For junk hauling in Maryland, Washington DC or Northern Virginia, contact 123JUNK.

hoarding-disorder

Telltale Signs Your Loved One May be Suffering from Hoarding

Everyone has stuff. And between home offices, kids, hobbies and collections of favorite items, you know how stuff can build up. Is it normal or is it hoarding? What is the difference? Here are some of the telltale signs your loved one may be suffering from hoarding that may help you differentiate.

Accumulation of Clutter

One of the first signs of a hoarding disorder is a gradual buildup of clutter in living spaces of items for which there is no immediate need or space. Your loved one might think, “I could use this someday,” or “It’s on sale, so I had better grab several of them.”

They Can’t Throw Things Away

Another sign is their difficulty in discarding items. People suffering from hoarding may keep the packaging from items purchased, pile up newspapers, thinking they’ll read them later, or salvage found items that they can potentially fix—but never do. These problems develop gradually over time, and are often hidden until the buildup becomes significant.

What are some of the other telltale signs that your loved one may have hoarding tendencies or be suffering from hoarding?

Certain Parts of the Home are Off Limits

People with hoarding disorder may try to limit access to rooms in their home to hide the problem. Look for closed doors or excuses why you can’t enter a room. Your loved one might prevent you from entering the house altogether and may become uncomfortable having any visitors at all.

Decluttering is Stalled or Stopped

Your loved one may start decluttering a room, then get waylaid and never complete the task. Sometimes there are just too many decisions to be made and even the smallest organizational task can be overwhelming. They soon stop trying and the clutter builds up even more.

They Can’t Find Things

Is your loved one constantly misplacing their keys, their purse, or other needed items? When there is too much clutter and no organizational system, these items can easily get lost. The person may often be late because they can’t find what they need in order to get out the door.

They Don’t Want to Put Things Away

People with hoarding tendencies like to see their things, and may be resistant to putting them away in closets, cabinets or boxes. Their items are likely stacked everywhere, and cover most horizontal surfaces. If you try to help organize or put things away, or even move items in order to sit in a chair, you may be scolded. Your loved one does not like to have his or her things touched.

Read our post: The Fire Dangers of Hoarding

Storage Areas are Overflowing

Take a quick look at the closets and garage. Likely, they are filled to the brim. And often, your loved one may have one or more storage facilities outside of the home, like a shed, outbuilding or a paid storage unit.

They Continue to Buy

Your loved one may be in debt, even without your knowing it, because of their compulsive need to buy. They’ll have good reasons why they needed to make a purchase, like a need to buy gifts for upcoming birthday or holiday celebration. But look outside of these gift purchases. Are the pantry and refrigerator overflowing with out-of-date foods? Are there stacks of unread books? Or unopened packages? Debt can also accumulate from the fees paid to outside storage facilities.

Related: The ICD Clutter-Hoarding Scale

What is Hoarding?

“Hoarding disorder is a persistent difficulty discarding or parting with possessions because of a perceived need to save them,” reports the Mayo Clinic. “A person with hoarding disorder experiences distress at the thought of getting rid of the items and excessive accumulation of items, regardless of actual value, occurs.”

Cases may range from mild to severe, and can have from little to huge impact on someone’s life, or even affect day-to-day functioning. If you suspect that your loved one may be a hoarder, there may not be much you can do personally. Since hoarding disorder may stem from a mental or physiological condition, it could be time to get a trained behavioral or medical professional involved.

See our post: Hoarding is a Bigger Problem than Clearing Out Junk

Let 123JUNK Help With Junk Removal

When it’s time to clear out a home or donate items, 123JUNK can help. We understand the difficulties you can have with loved ones suffering from a hoarding disorder and truly care about assisting you. Give us a call and let’s talk about how we can help create a healthy and happy home environment for your loved one. To schedule your junk removal or cleanout services in Maryland, Washington, DC or Northern Virginia, contact 123JUNK at 1-800-364-5778.

–photo from The Mayo Clinic

Professional property cleanout services in Chantilly VA

Do I Need to Be There for My Junk Removal?

When 123JUNK schedules a junk removal pickup with a homeowner or business client, we prefer that the client is going to be on site when we arrive. However, “Do I need to be there for my junk removal” is one of the questions we sometimes get from prospective clients. Let’s look at why you need to be present.

Here are some reasons why you need to be there for your junk removal:

To Enable Interior Access

When you have junk, furniture or household goods that need to be removed from inside your home, garage or yard, our team members will require access. Someone needs to be there to let them in and walk them to the areas where our team will get to work. We’ll also need to see the floors, stairs, walls and any property we’ll need to work around so we can protect them during your junk removal.

To Identify Items for Removal

You know exactly which items need to be hauled, and you may have already gathered them into a pile. But if you have furniture, appliances or other large items, they cannot be piled. To ensure we take the correct items—and get everything you want removed, we ask that you be there to help to point them out to our team.

To Make Sure We Can Take It

There are certain items, like chemicals or hazardous waste, that are prohibited by law for 123JUNK to haul. And sometimes our clients have questions on whether we can take an item or not. You need to be there to show us the items, and it’s OK if you ask if we can haul or recycle things you’re not sure about. We do ask that you not put questionable items into boxes where they cannot be identified by sight. You can also check our FAQs for a listing of items we can and cannot take.

Related: EPA–Household Hazardous Waste

To Ensure the Job is Complete

When you are there for your junk removal, we want you to make sure that we complete the job to your full satisfaction—that we’ve taken all of the items you want us to and swept the area where they were located to leave it tidy.

To Set Expectations About What Can Be Donated.

In order to provide a better service experience to our clients, it is best that we have a discussion about your items and our professional opinion about what our charity partners will be interested in accepting from your property.

Are There Times When I Don’t Need to Be There for My Junk Removal?

We truly prefer that you are on site when we arrive for your junk removal, and in 99.9% of the time, we’ll require it. It helps us to avoid confusion, offer you a smoother and more enjoyable transaction, and ensure that the job is done right and to your satisfaction.

On rare occasions, we have scheduled a curbside pickup where the client does not have to be there. Whether we can provide that service to your situation is something we determine on a case-by-case basis.

Schedule Your Junk Removal in DC, MD and No. VA with 123JUNK

When you schedule your junk removal with 123JUNK, we’ll walk you through what to expect and provide you with convenient, all-inclusive pricing up front. If you need junk removal from your home—or commercial or office spaces—in Northern Virginia, Maryland or Washington, DC, contact 123JUNK at 1-800-364-5778.

four men posing in front of company moving truck

What to Do With Your Unwanted Household Items

If you’re like others, you have many items around your home that you just don’t need or use any more. Perhaps you’ve replaced the furniture with newer versions. Or maybe the kids have outgrown their clothes and toys. No matter what the reason, you’re ready to get rid of these items. But…they might be in too good a shape to throw away. That’s when you wonder what to do with your unwanted household items.

123JUNK has the perfect solution.

123JUNK offers a one-stop solution to clearing out your unwanted household items. We started our business and run it successfully with the philosophy of Donate-Recycle-Dispose.

Donate

If your unwanted items are in good or even great shape, or if you desire to donate items, 123JUNK can pick up these items and carry them to one of our local charity partners like A Wider Circle, Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore, Passion for Community or the Montgomery County Humane Society. There, your items can be provided to a family in need, or sold in one of the retail outlets to raise money for charitable causes.

You will be provided with a receipt of your donation that you can use for a tax deduction.

Recycle

Sometimes an item isn’t in good enough shape to be repurposed back into the community, however, it may contain materials that can be recycled. It is our goal to keep as many items out of our area landfills as possible. We’ll divide out items like metals, electronics, some plastics, paper, cardboard, clothing, and other recyclables when we load our big red truck and deliver them directly to an area recycling center.

Dispose

Only after the Donate and Recycle options are depleted do we set aside the rest of the collection to deliver to area landfills.

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Talk to Our Representative

If you’re wondering what to do with your unwanted household items, give 123JUNK a call. We don’t use automated answering systems, so you’ll reach one of our client relationship representatives (“meet” them on our blog!). Feel free to ask questions about our processes, our charity partners, our fees, and even our values structure.

Enjoy Convenient Flat Fee Pricing

Speaking of fees, you’ll enjoy 123JUNK’s flat fee pricing. It doesn’t matter how heavy the load is or how long it takes us to load and deliver it. Our rates are set based on how much space the items take on our trucks. And we have some of the the largest trucks in the industry!

Included in your price quote are the fuel costs, labor charges, disposal fees, donation delivery costs, and full damage insurance. We can give an estimate over the phone. (10% discount for curbside pickups!)

Labor Only Services

Don’t forget about 123JUNK’s labor-only services. We’ll be glad to move items around your property while we’re hauling away your unwanted household items.

Wondering What to Do With Your Unwanted Household Items? Call 123JUNK.

If you’re in Northern Virginia, Maryland or Washington DC and are wondering what to do with your unwanted household items, contact 123JUNK. We’re proud of our 1-2-3 Donate-Recycle-Dispose process, and you will be too, knowing you’ve helped the environment and perhaps other families in your own community. Learn more about the 123JUNK story.

123JUNK is the first choice for junk hauling in your neighborhood. And the easiest solution to your junk removal needs. Call us at 1-800-364-5778 to schedule your next pickup.