UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Squalor in Community-Referred Hoarded Homes Luu, May; Bratiotis, Christiana; Lauster, Nathanael Thomas, 1972-; Edsell-Vetter, Jesse; Woody, Sheila R.


Domestic squalor is a difficult topic to study; residents of squalid homes are unlikely to volunteer for research due to factors such as stigma or poor insight. Although squalor and hoarding are distinct constructs, extant research suggests squalor occurs more commonly in hoarding than in the general population, but little is known about the circumstances under which squalor develops in hoarded homes. The current study aimed to identify correlates and unique predictors of squalor in the context of hoarded homes based on archival data (N = 381) collected in 2010-2014 from three North American community agencies who help clients with hoarding symptoms and squalor. As part of their routine services, each agency completed in-home assessments to evaluate client characteristics (poor insight, social isolation) and conditions of the home (clutter accumulation, poor access to kitchen or bathroom, number of pets). Across sites, degree of clutter accumulation and poor access to the kitchen or bathroom were consistent unique predictors of squalor presence. This research provides a window into the homes of people who struggle with problematic living conditions and suggests that specific conditions of the home are potential risk factors for squalor in the context of hoarding symptoms.

Item Citations and Data


Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International

Usage Statistics