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Chicago Foreclosures

Foreclosures are an unfortunate fact of life, particularly when an economic recession looms.

When they happen, it’s often due to difficult circumstances, and the former home residents may find it impossible to remove items from the house.

Sooner or later, someone needs to remove the junk from that building. It might be the bank, it might be a real estate agent, or it might be a new owner buying the property as-is. Whatever the case, the building needs to be cleaned out.

It’s always a shame to see a house full of gently-used items cleared and thrown in the trash. Our landfills are already packed, and enough people are struggling in this economy that it just doesn’t make sense to get rid of it all. Of course, when you want the house cleaned out, you don’t have the luxury of being able to resell items or dispose of them yourself.

Removing foreclosure junk in Chicago doesn’t have to be an impossible task. It doesn’t even have to be one you handle yourself.

Here’s what you can do.

Step 1: Identify the Scope of Your Foreclosure Clean-Out

Different foreclosure clean-outs need different levels of attention. Sometimes it’s a simple matter of removing everything from a relatively picked-over home, where only the bulkiest, least-valuable, or oldest debris is left over. Sometimes it’s a hoarder’s house packed to the gills with garbage. We can remove almost anything, but to have the best experience possible, you want to know the scope of your clean-out.

Identify The Scope of the Cleanout

1. Is it indoors, outdoors, or both?

Indoor junk can include large and bulky items like pool tables, pianos, couches, and other furniture, to small things, e-waste, carpet, construction debris, and simply piles of stuff. It can be surprising what people leave behind when they have no other option, and while it’s always sad to clear out the remnants of former residents’ lives, it needs to be done to bring the property back into use in the community.

Meanwhile, outdoor clean-outs can be anything from landscaping debris to removing fences, decks, sheds, swing sets, hot tubs, and even pools. Anything in a yard that you don’t want (short of the plants themselves – we’d recommend a landscaper for that job) can be removed through our services.

And, of course, we can do both inside and out, so long as you let us know.

2. Is it a little or a lot?

Our junk removal service is equally available, no matter the size of your project. If all you need to be removed is a few old appliances and a couple of pieces of furniture, that’s perfectly fine. If you need a whole property cleaned out, from top to bottom, inside and out, that’s fine too. Our team is ready to clear it out and ship it away, so you don’t need to worry about it.

Of particular note is hoarding situations. Hoarding is a problem, but it requires sensitivity and time to manage.

If you’re working to clean out a hoarder’s house, especially if it’s a loved one’s home, you may want to spend time sorting through what gets removed, looking for significant, sentimental, or valuable items to retain. This situation is well within the scope of what we do, but we do like to know what we’re getting into.

Just let us know!

We can also remove heavy, bulky, and other inconvenient materials. If it’s big enough to need special equipment to move, don’t worry about trying to do it yourself; call us. Our trained operators have the licenses and the tools to do the job.

3. Does it include hazardous waste or e-waste?

Frequently, cleaning out a foreclosure means removing items that can be highly toxic and devastating to the environment if they’re simply thrown away. Old pesticides, paints, chemicals, tires, batteries, and other hazardous things can be safely removed and processed safely.

Did you know that electronics are a serious environmental hazard as well?

Electronic devices, from TVs and computers to phones and more, often contain a variety of toxic metals.

They’re safe to use as consumers – we’re not trying to spread fear – but when they’re thrown into a landfill, those trace amounts of lead, beryllium, cadmium, mercury, and other heavy metals leach out into the environment and contaminate soil, groundwater, and more.

There are proper facilities for recycling e-waste and hazardous household items, and we want you to know that we handle it properly.

Hazardous waste is one thing, but even regular household junk can include sharp, heavy, rusty, and dangerous items, particularly anything that has been left outside to deteriorate. We want to ensure everyone stays safe and legal with their junk removal. We don’t want you to end up in legal hot water from improper disposal, we don’t want you risking your safety to remove dangerous or extremely heavy items, and we don’t want any hazards left in our Chicago neighborhoods.

4. Is it one property or many?

We’re happy to work with you whether you’re clearing out a single property or a series of them.

Each project will have its quote and scope of work, but we’re more than happy to work with you to clear out anything you need. Whether it’s a single family home or a portfolio of properties you manage, we love repeat business partners from property managers to real estate agents who need many foreclosures cleared out quickly and efficiently.

Step 2: Make Sure You’re Local

We’re experts in removing and recycling junk, but we can only cover so much ground.

We cover the Chicago and Chicagoland suburbs, including the Arlington Heights, Elmhurst & Lombard, Evanston, La Grange, Naperville & Aurora, and Riverside neighborhoods.

If you’re concerned about whether or not you’re in our service area, give us a call or reach out online to talk about it.

Make Sure You're Local

Our warehouse is located in the middle of downtown Chicago so that we can cover the entire City of Chicago and suburbs.

Step 3: Understand Junk Recycling

We’re not just any junk removal service. We don’t just funnel everything to the landfills; we’re dedicated to green junk removal and recycling. What does that mean?

When we remove items in good condition from a home, business, foreclosure, or other Chicago area clean-out, they are brought back to our warehouse. In our 10,000-square-foot facility, we sort through items we remove and strive only to discard what truly can’t be reused or recycling.

Materials we remove from a Chicago foreclosure like yours are sorted and, if possible, reused.

Understanding Junk Recycling

Furniture, fixtures, appliances, and other household items can be cleaned and donated to local Goodwill, Salvation Army, and Habitat for Humanity facilities to be recycled back into the community.

Anything that isn’t of donation-ready quality may still be recycled. As long as it’s usable and isn’t a safety hazard, we’ll do our best to make it available to the community again.

Anything that isn’t usable, donatable, or repairable is sent to our partners at Lakeshore Recycling.

They can process, divert, and recycle 90% of what arrives in their facility. Who doesn’t love cutting down 90% of trash and converting it into recycled and reused assets?

It doesn’t matter if it’s furniture, construction debris, or just plain old household junk; we do our best to recycle it in any way we can.

Step 4: Get Your Quote

Some junk removal services give you vague discussions of pricing based on factors they don’t disclose. We strive to be up-front with our pricing, with guaranteed rates. There are no surprises here. Labor, heavy lifting, hauling, and everything else is included. Just text us photos or give us a call at 312-800-1940!

What determines the price of these clean-out efforts?

It’s simple: the amount of stuff we’re hauling away for you. The amount of space taken up by the junk you need to be hauled away is the primary determining factor. We don’t surprise you with hidden fees, trip charges, or additional labor costs.

We’ll give you a quote when we chat about your project’s scope. But we’re also flexible. If you find you need more removed than you thought, we’re happy to make adjustments as necessary. Decide you want to keep that couch and fridge after all? Or, decide you want them gone? Either way, we’ll work with you to do what needs to be done.

Get Your Quote

On top of that, we also offer volume discounts, so we can work with you to clear out even the most extensive projects.

Pricing is based on cubic yards, roughly a little larger than your average washing machine or stove.

It’s as simple as that!

Don’t worry about inefficient loading, either. We want to cram as much junk in as small a space as possible, both for efficiency in our trucks and to save you money.

Of course, nothing in life is truly that simple. There will always be exceptions, but we’re up-front about them. Exceptions are generally things like:

1. Weight limits.

Our trucks can only handle so much weight, so if you need a ton of bricks/rocks/concrete hauled away, we may need to add a weight surcharge.

2. Intensive labor.

Intensive labor is usually in hoarding situations where the new property owner wants to sort through everything; the added time and work may result in an additional fee. We’ve seen relatively easy hoarding houses to clean up and others that are quite challenging; the pricing for these two situations, depending on the situation’s complexity, can be different.

3. Massive projects.

Extra-large projects can influence pricing, like commercial buildings and warehouses, mainly if they involve the disassembly of large items or large amounts of furniture – which can result in a labor adjustment.

For the vast majority of foreclosures in the Chicago area, you aren’t going to encounter any of these.

Moreover, since we ask for photos before estimating a quote, we’ll be able to tell you up-front beforehand whether or not you may encounter an additional charge. We’re not trying to surprise you or spring a hidden fee on you at the last minute; we want you to know what you’re dealing with ahead of time.

All of our quotes are zero obligation. Reach out via phone, text, email, or online chat, and we’ll be more than happy to discuss your project with you. All you need is an idea of what your project entails (see step one) and some photos, if possible, and we can quote a price, set a date, and work with you until your foreclosure is ready to be polished and flipped.

Step 5: Book Local Junk Relief You Can Trust

JUNK Relief is a locally-owned Chicago-area business operating since 2004. Whether you need a few gloved hands to remove household junk, extensive construction debris removal, or anything in between, we’ve been a trusted name in Chicago junk removal for over 15 years.

You have a lot to consider when looking for a good junk removal company:

  • How good is their customer service? Ours is top-notch.
  • What can they remove, and what will they leave? We’ll take anything you need to be hauled away.
  • What’s the price? We offer some of the lowest rates in the Chicago area.
  • Are they insured? We are.
  • Will they hit your deadline? We will assign the correct resources to finish on time!

Our recycling processes ensure that everything that we can recycle will be recycled. In the rare instance where the worst happens, you’re covered.


What happens to the junk?

We work with anyone in our service area. Property managers, banks, landlords, homeowners, and commercial properties; no matter your project, we’re here for you as long as it’s in Chicago and the surrounding areas.

We set the gold standard for fast, effective, low-cost, and eco-friendly junk removal.

We pride ourselves on our green junk removal. As mentioned above, we take great pains to process all the junk we remove, repurposing and donating what we can, and recycling what’s left, and only throwing away what absolutely can’t be recycled.

No matter what you need to be removed, contact us today to get it hauled away. JUNK Relief is readily available to you; all you need to do is reach out and contact us for an estimate.


Joe Weidman

Joe is a Chicago native, born and raised in Elmhurst. He founded Junk Relief more than 10 years ago and has worked with more than 20,000 homeowners and businesses throughout Chicagoland. His passion for starting a business in junk removal stemmed from seeing the need to do things differently. He prides himself on his company's model to provide unexpectedly professional service.


If you’ve got junk in Chicago or the Chicagoland Suburbs, we can help. CALL US or TEXT US at (312) 800-1940.


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