How to Prevent Hoarding From Keeping You in Serious Debt

Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print to help you understand what you are buying. Be sure to consult with a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the financial institution.

hoarding
Logo

We’ve got your back! Student Loan Hero is a completely free website 100% focused on helping student loan borrowers get the answers they need. Read more

How do we make money? It’s actually pretty simple. If you choose to check out and become a customer of any of the loan providers featured on our site, we get compensated for sending you their way. This helps pay for our amazing staff of writers (many of which are paying back student loans of their own!).

Bottom line: We’re here for you. So please learn all you can, email us with any questions, and feel free to visit or not visit any of the loan providers on our site. Read less

Hoarding.

Although it’s a term many use lightly, it can be a true mental health disorder. One that can put a large strain on your life, especially your finances.

Here’s what you need to know about how this disorder can keep anyone suffering from it deep in debt.

What is a hoarder, really?

While most people have referred to hoarding before (usually in jest), it is a serious illness.

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) defines hoarding as “the persistent difficulty discarding or parting with possessions, regardless of their actual value.”

At first glance, this can sound like any of us sometimes. So how can you really tell whether someone suffers from a hoarding disorder?

The International OCD Foundation has a useful fact sheet on hoarding that says that while collectors seek to organize and display their things, hoarders do not. A few helpful facts about compulsive hoarding include:

  • A hoarder collects and keeps a lot of items, even things that appear useless or of little value to most people.
  • These items clutter the living spaces and keep the person from using their rooms as they were intended.
  • These items cause distress or problems in day-to-day activities.

How many people suffer from this? According to the American Psychiatric Association, two to five percent of the population. However, The Washington Post cites a much larger statistic of “6 percent of the population, or 19 million Americans.”

How hoarding behavior affects your finances

Like any disorder, hoarding affects many areas of your life. But a hoarder is also likely to see their finances take a major hit.

Especially when you consider the ADAA’s further descriptions of hoarding:

  • It can be related to compulsive buying (such as never passing up a bargain).
  • Hoarding can lead to a compulsive acquisition of free items (such as collecting flyers).
  • It can also drive the compulsive search for perfect or unique items (which may not appear to others as unique, such as an old container).

It may seem that only the first and last things would hurt your finances, but even the compulsion to hoard free things can have an effect. Here’s why.

Hoarding can lead to overspending

This first one is pretty clear. If you suffer from compulsively buying things, sticking to a budget might be pretty difficult to do.

Hoarding is an addiction, and that addiction to spending can’t easily be fixed with a budget on an excel spreadsheet.

Hoarding can cause you to miss bills

Many hoarders end up in a position in which they have so many things that they can hardly navigate their own homes. As piles of stuff overflow, many hoarders are forced to pave tiny walkways to get from one room to the next.

Now try to imagine finding your paper mail in all of that. Any hoarder who isn’t paying their bills online may end up missing bill due dates – because they can’t find their bills, to begin with.

Hoarding can lead to an increase in daily expenses

For the same reason above, hoarding can lead to an increase in daily expenses.

Serious hoarders who literally fill their homes with things are less likely to be able to use kitchen appliances, as they too will be buried. That means buying more meals out – probably all meals. That’s an expense that can topple even a strict budget fairly quickly.

Hoarding and debt

A compulsive need to buy things can lead anyone into debt. And hoarding is an addiction that can overrun the lives of those it touches.

While there are the physical and financial manifestations of it (not being able to use your own home and falling into debt) there’s also the reliance on the addiction.

Paying off debt requires diligence and an eye towards the future. It requires a belief that you have a future worth fighting for.

But if you have an addiction, that’s going to be the loudest and most important thing in your life. And it’s going to focus you on the here and now. Thinking towards the future with an addiction might be a lot easier said than done.

If someone is suffering from a hoarding disorder and debt, the best thing they can do is seek help for the hoarding first.

How all of us can be a little too attached to our things

While hoarding doesn’t affect the majority of the population, we can all be susceptible to being a little too attached to some of our things.

Lifehacker recently wrote an article about why this is, based on a TED Talk on the same subject. They talked about the “endowment effect” and the “ownership connection” (valuing something because you own it), as well as “sense of self” (letting the things we own provide us with a sense of identity).

Think back to some of the things you might have a hard time getting rid of. Do any of these attributes apply?

The problem with over-attachment to our things

If you don’t identify with hoarding, you might not think it’s a big deal to be attached to your things. But this emotion can run deeper: thinking we need these things to be happy. With hoarding, this emotion happens to the extreme. But it’s something we all deal with from time to time.

Thinking we need things to be happy can lead to large amounts of debt. Imagine upgrading your phone or car before you really need to or buying a larger home on a larger mortgage than you had planned. It can even go down to the college you choose, the clothes you wear, and the types of restaurants you invite your friends out to.

When we attach our identity to the things we buy, it can lead to a problem that spirals out of control if unchecked. It may not lead to hoarding, but it can certainly lead to overspending. And, if you’re in debt, it makes it that much harder to apply your money to debt payoff.

Attach yourself to goals instead of things

So what if you gave yourself a different way to feel a surge of happiness? How about the surge of happiness you get from paying off a small debt or saving up for a vacation? Or even the pride that can come with staying right on budget?

Once you can extricate your sense of identity and happiness from your things, you can attach yourself to your goals. You might even find one working with the other. For example, selling some of your lesser-used things to reach financial goals such as debt payoff.

You don’t have to go full minimalist to make this happen – though practicing the art of removing things you don’t need can certainly be a healthy endeavor once in awhile. Just give yourself a chance to try finding happiness in not spending, in saving your money to reach goals, and see how you feel then.

You just might find that the happiness and pride you feel in working to achieve a larger goal feels better than anything else in the end.

Interested in a personal loan?

LendingTree allows you to compare rates from multiple lenders by filling out one easy form. Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print to help you understand what you are buying. Be sure to consult with a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time.

Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print to help you understand what you are buying. Be sure to consult with a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time.

RATES (APR)loan amount
5.99% – 19.16%1 $5,000 to $100,000
8.69% – 35.99% $1,000 to $50,000
7.99% – 35.97%* $1,000 to $35,000
99.00% – 199.00%2 $500 to $4,000
5.99% – 24.99%3 $5,000 to $35,000
7.99% – 29.99%4 $7,500 to $40,000
compare rates on Lendingtree now
NMLS #1136: Terms & Conditions Apply
1 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for SoFi.

SoFi Disclosures

  1. Fixed rates from 5.99% APR to 18.82% APR (with AutoPay). SoFi rate ranges are current as of March 19, 2020 and are subject to change without notice. Not all rates and amounts available in all states. See Personal Loan eligibility details. Not all applicants qualify for the lowest rate. If approved for a loan, to qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. Your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including evaluation of your creditworthiness, years of professional experience, income and other factors. See APR examples and terms. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account.
  2. To check the rates and terms you qualify for, SoFi conducts a soft credit pull that will not affect your credit score. However, if you choose a product and continue your application, we will request your full credit report from one or more consumer reporting agencies, which is considered a hard credit pull.
    See Consumer Licenses.
  3. Minimum Credit Score: Not all applicants who meet SoFi’s minimum credit score requirements are approved for a personal loan. In addition to meeting SoFi’s minimum eligibility criteria, applicants must also meet other credit and underwriting requirements to qualify.
  4. If you lose your job through no fault of your own, you may apply for Unemployment Protection. SoFi will suspend your monthly SoFi loan payments and provide job placement assistance during your forbearance period. Interest will continue to accrue and will be added to your principal balance at the end of each forbearance period, to the extent permitted by applicable law. Benefits are offered in three month increments, and capped at 12 months, in aggregate, over the life of the loan. To be eligible for this assistance you must provide proof that you have applied for and are eligible for unemployment compensation, and you must actively work with our Career Advisory Group to look for new employment. If the loan is co-signed the unemployment protection applies where both the borrower and cosigner lose their job and meet conditions.
  5. Terms and Conditions Apply: SOFI RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet SoFi’s underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. To qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. If approved, your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including term of loan, a responsible financial history, years of experience, income and other factors. Rates and Terms are subject to change at anytime without notice and are subject to state restrictions. SoFi refinance loans are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that the federal loan program offers such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment or PAYE. Licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Financing Law License No. 6054612. SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Lending Corp., NMLS # 1121636. (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org)
2 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for Opploans.

Opploans Disclosures

Direct Deposit required for payroll.

Opploans currently operates in these states: . *Approval may take longer if additional verification documents are requested. Not all loan requests are approved. Approval and loan terms vary based on credit determination and state law. Applications processed and approved before 7:30 p.m. ET Monday-Friday are typically funded the next business day.

  1. To qualify, a borrower must (i) be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident; (ii) reside in a state where OppLoans operates; (iii) have direct deposit; (iv) meet income requirements; (v) be 18 years of age (19 in Alabama); and, (vi) meet verification standards.
  2. NV Residents: The use of high-interest loans services should be used for short-term financial needs only and not as a long-term financial solution. Customers with credit difficulties should seek credit counseling before entering into any loan transaction.

  3. OppLoans performs no credit checks through the three major credit bureaus Experian, Equifax, or TransUnion. Applicants’ credit scores are provided by Clarity Services, Inc., a credit reporting agency.

  4. Based on customer service ratings on Google and Facebook. Testimonials reflect the individual’s opinion and may not be illustrative of all individual experiences with OppLoans. Check loan reviews.

  5.  

    Rates and terms vary by state.

3 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for Payoff.

Payoff Disclosures

  1. All loans are subject to credit review and approval. Your actual rate depends upon credit score, loan amount, loan term, credit usage and history. Currently loans are not offered in: MA, MS, NE, NV, OH, and WV.
4 Important Disclosures for FreedomPlus.

FreedomPlus Disclosures

  1. The loan terms presented are not guaranteed and APRs presented are estimates only. To obtain a loan you must submit additional information and documentation and all loans are subject to credit review and our approval process. The range of APRs is 7.99% to 29.99% and your actual APR will depend upon factors including your credit score, usage and history, the requested loan amount, the stated loan purpose, and the term of the requested loan. To qualify for a 7.99% APR loan, a borrower will need excellent credit on a loan for an amount less than $12,000.00, and with a term equal to 24 months. Adding a co-borrower with sufficient income; using at least eighty-five percent (85%) of the loan proceeds to directly pay off qualifying existing debt; or showing proof of sufficient retirement savings, could help you also qualify for the lowest rate available. All loans are made by Cross River Bank and MetaBank®, N.A., Members FDIC.
* Important Disclosures for Upgrade Bank.

Upgrade Bank Disclosures

Personal loans made through Upgrade feature APRs of 7.99%-35.97%. All personal loans have a 2.9% to 8% origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Lowest rates require Autopay and paying off a portion of existing debt directly. For example, if you receive a $10,000 loan with a 36-month term and a 17.98% APR (which includes a 14.32% yearly interest rate and a 5% one-time origination fee), you would receive $9,500 in your account and would have a required monthly payment of $343.33. Over the life of the loan, your payments would total $12,359.97. The APR on your loan may be higher or lower and your loan offers may not have multiple term lengths available. Actual rate depends on credit score, credit usage history, loan term, and other factors. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may increase the cost of your fixed rate loan. There is no fee or penalty for repaying a loan early. Accept your loan offer and your funds will be sent to your bank or designated account within one (1) business day of clearing necessary verifications. Availability of the funds is dependent on how quickly your bank processes the transaction. From the time of approval, funds should be available within four (4) business days. Funds sent directly to pay off your creditors may take up to 2 weeks to clear, depending on the creditor. Personal loans issued by Upgrade’s lending partners. Information on Upgrade’s lending partners can be found at https://www.upgrade.com/lending-partners/.

Published in Credit & Debt, Spend Less

Tagged in