Nikki Works with a Professional Organizer pt6

Posted by on Aug 11, 2012 in Nikki Hires a PO | 1 comment

Nikki has decided to hire a Professional Organizer to help her with her clutter.  She has been looking at the Institute For Challenging Disorganization – Clutter-Hoarding Scale (CHS)  Her disorganization hasn’t reached the hoarding stage, at least she hopes not.

The scale has several assessment categories (see blog number 5.)  There are five levels described in the scale.  Levels are determined by the conditions that exist within each of the assessment categories.

A Level One home is probably described as messy.  There is some clutter build up, but everything works and all the rooms and exits are useable.  A person who lives in a Level One house could hire a Professional Organizer with no special training.

A Level Two home has issues in all assessment categories with clutter blocking a major exit and possibly problems with HVAC, electrical, or plumbing systems.  A client living in a Level Two home may be chronically disorganized (CD.)  This situation requires a Professional Organizer with additional education and experience working with CD clients.

Level Three is considered the tipping point between a cluttered home and a hoarding situation.  Clutter prohibits at least one room from being used as it was intended.  For example, so much stuff in the shower and sink that they are unusable.  The air conditioner may be broken, but there is so much clutter that a repair person can’t get to it.   Housekeeping has been limited, so a Level Three home is usually very dusty. These clients need the services of a Professional Organizer with training in CD and hoarding.

A Level Four home will have some structural damage that has been ignored and many rooms that can’t be used as intended.  Clutter has built up around doorways and halls making access difficult.  In this situation, a Professional Organizer must have training in working with hoarding situations.  Level Four clients may need help from a team of specialists.  In addition to a Professional Organizer, the team could include mental health professionals, pest and animal control experts, and building contractors.

Government agencies may consider Level Five homes to be unsafe for habitation.  These conditions require a specially trained Professional Organizer and intervention from a team that may also include government agencies such as Code Enforcement, and the Fire Department.

Nikki is relieved to see that the condition of her house would not be classified as a hoarding situation.  She has decided her house is probably a Level Two.  Now she has to find a Professional Organizer that has the experience and training to help her.

Next post:  What questions should Nikki ask before she hires a Professional Organizer?


Copyright© 2012 Elizabeth Tawney Gross, Organizing For Everyday, LLC

One Response to “Nikki Works with a Professional Organizer pt6”

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