#4. USE A HEAD FAKE
Collectively, you and a buddy are probably just as intelligent as your trick-or-treaters. So one of you can serve as the bait who’s dressed up but willingly attracts the kids’ attention. This gives the impression that there’s nothing to fear while the other person to sneaks up from the opposite angle. This works particularly well with younger children. Just keep a mop handy to sop up any urine they accidentally expel.
#5. BE SPECIFIC WITH YOUR LIGHTING
“Spotlighting a slimy, bloody table with lights is a great example of a porch distraction,” Wooden says. “Whatever you choose to light is what people’s eyes will be drawn to when they approach your house.” Make the real scare come from somewhere else, and you’re golden.
#6. BE SELECTIVELY NOISY
Break up the death shrouds, thunder, creaking floors, moans, groans, and organ playing with loud thuds, booms, and clacks. “Anything like duck calls, a tambourine or an air horn will work,” Sadowski says.
#7. Plan Some Scary Pranks
Halloween pranks are always fun — just make sure they won’t cause too much of a shock (unless that’s what you’re going for!). If you want to keep things lighthearted but still spooky, try putting together some simple tricks like hiding in dark corners or behind curtains with creepy masks on.
You could also set up fake spiders or rats around the house or yard as an added bonus. Lastly, if you have access to any kind of audio equipment, setting up sound effects is always an option — just be careful not to go overboard with them!
What are your favorite tips for scaring the hell out of trick-or-treaters? Do you have any unique ideas that we didn’t mention? We want to hear from you! Share your frighteningly good ideas with us in the comments below. Happy Halloween!