BOO Your Neighbors!

Have you ever been BOOed?

We’re not talking about being booed because you wouldn’t kiss your sweetie on the Jumbotron… we’re talking about a Halloween tradition that’s been sweeping the nation… BOOing your neighbors!

Here’s how it works… anyone can start the Boo chain. All you have to do is make up a sign or print the one we’ve provided below, gather some Halloween goodies or treats, then secretly drop them off to a friend or two. They’re supposed to keep the chain going. We’ve been doing this in our neighborhood for years. Sometimes we start the boo chain, other times a sneaky neighbor will beat us to it. You don’t even have to stick to your neighborhood. BOO a business! Take the BOO chain to a neighborhood where you don’t know anyone and start the tradition there. Let your kids BOO a few apartments in an assisted living facility or retirement community. The residents especially enjoy it if the kiddos come in costume. Just check with the staff first to make sure it’s okay.

The real fun is in spreading the holiday cheer from house to house. Our whole family gets involved. The girls love to help put together the baskets and goodies. But their favorite part is ringing the doorbell and running away before they get caught in the act of BOOing! After the chain has been going for a few days we love to drive through the neighborhood and see all of the “We’ve Been BOOed” signs hanging in doors and windows.

If you need ideas on what you can BOO your neighbors with, we’ve got plenty:

  • A basket of Halloween themed goodies like spider rings and candy
  • A gallon of cider and the ingredients to make Property Geek Sarah’s Double Duty Apple Cider
  • Homemade cookies
  • Pumpkins!
  • A Halloween decoration or two
  • Glow in the dark necklaces or flashlights for Trick-Or-Treating
  • Ingredients to make Halloween-themed s’mores with ghost-shaped marshmallows
  • A tube of slice and bake Halloween cookies along with a jar of sprinkles or can of frosting
  • A bag of apples and a jar of caramel for dipping

There’s also an adult twist for the game. Not only can your neighbors be BOOed, they can be BOOzed as well. Add a bottle of caramel vodka to the goodie basket or drop off a bottle of wine or six-pack of Oktoberfest beer.

And if all of your friends and neighbors have already been BOOed or BOOzed and you need someone to keep the chain going… feel free to stop by The Property Geeks office in downtown Lakeville!

Happy BOOing!

Download here

Download here


25 Super Smart Storage Ideas

As summer winds down it’s the perfect time to get your house into back-to-school shape! Here are some refreshing and unique ways to improve your storage around the home. These tips are organized by room. We hope you find something useful!


1. This appliance lift is an easy way to manage space and convenience for big items in your kitchen.

2. A slide out rack can smooth over your pot and pan storage.

Via Oddity MallE

3. Faux drawers are a waste of space. Make them useful with some functional, pull out drawers.

4. You can’t get much more functional with storing an IKEA ironing board than this.

5. You can store bread and root vegetables at room temperature. Drawers like these are easy ways to store them out of sight, and keep pests off.


6. You can store your hair tools in a specially made drawer, like this one.

7. Does your sink just not have enough room? A simple sink shelf can do the job.

8. This skinny bathroom floor cabinet is perfect for tiny bathrooms.

9. Tired of having your toilet brush and plunger limiting the appeal of your bathroom floor? Utilize the negative space in your wall with a Hy-dit cabinet.


10. Store that dog bed away easily with a platform bed drawer.

11. Keep that smelly footwear safely tucked away in this lovely ottoman.

12. Have that special TV you need to safely hide away when not in use? Learn more about this table here.

13. See how The Girl on the Go hides her jewelry behind a full length mirror.

14. Put shoe store displays to shame, like a’ so.

15. What are tonka trucks if not a young (very) man’s tools? It only makes sense to store those and other manly toys on pegboard.

16. Always in a rush to get your kids to dress themselves in the mornings? Some well labeled drawers can help.

17. You can never have enough organization with kids.

These thin closet shelves for books and small toys are great for keeping things out of sight, while leaving plenty of closet space to use.

18. For the OCD, future architects among us.


19. Are you a photography buff? This kickstarter project has a genius lens rack that is just calling out for you.

20. You can use this cord hub to make power strip and cord storage so much more efficient.


21. This motorized bike storage rack is pure genius.

22. You’ll be thanking Popular Woodworking for this amazing tape storage DIY.

23. Who knew towel racks could be repurposed as trash bag holders?

24. Your wee ones deserve a garage too! It’s easier to construct than you might think.

25. This genius pegboard system is something any handyman could use. Learn to make it here.


11 House Fails That Could Ruin A Sale

When you’re looking for a home, you probably have a couple of lists in your head: the must-haves, the nice-to-haves, and the absolute deal-breakers.
Unfortunately, most of the places on this list fall into that third category, unless, of course, you’re handy or have a big budget for repairs.
Check out these strange but hilarious home fails that would definitely have you looking elsewhere.

1. A tree grows in… the driveway

Apparently they all drive motorcycles… #housefail #fail #garages #oops

A post shared by Pro Tool Reviews (@protoolreviews) on

Perhaps if you’re exceptional at parallel parking you could make this work. Otherwise, you’ll probably need to contact an arborist or tree surgeon before you can park in the garage. Unless you have a motorcycle as the caption suggests — then you’re all set!

2. What is this house trying to say?

#designfail #housefail #fail #foundinthecity #architecturefail

A post shared by isaos (@isaos) on

When your house resemble an emoji, chances are you’re going to get a lot of drive-bys as people attempt to figure out which emotion your home is trying to convey. Your guess is as good as mine.

3. Cock-eyed toilet

There’s nothing “regular” about this bathroom. Looks like someone installed this in a real hurry. (I’d hate to see how things would end up if they put in a bidet.) If nothing else, this would definitely be an interesting conversation-starter.

4. Tight squeeze

Spot the problem with this room! #fail #onejob #youhadonejob #1job #housefail #staircase

A post shared by Matthew (@1matthewplatt) on

Even the slimmest homeowner would have trouble shimmying between the post and the wall to climb those stairs. This definitely seems like poor planning on someone’s part.

5. Jump the curb

"Je t'assure chéri, cette maison est bien construite " #housefail #epicfail #fail #maison #house #bordeaux

A post shared by Jean-Francois Prieur (@jiefsourd) on

More garage trouble! Unless your car can levitate like something out of The Jetsons or go airborne a la The Dukes of Hazard, you’re going to have a devil of a time parking it inside. This caption, which translated to English reads: “I assure you, dear, this house is well-built,” makes you wonder what else about the home is a little screwy. I’m guessing this is no one-off.

6. Who needs privacy?

This state of the art kitchen was apparently designed to accommodate people with particularly fast metabolisms. Either that, or someone has taken the popular “open concept” thing a tad too far.

7. When home styles collide

Most homeowners want their addition to blend seamlessly with the rest of the architecture. Not these folks! But the question we keep coming back to is: Which part came first, the tudor or the cape?

8. Color explosion

Proving that a paint job can make or break your home’s appearance, this place could benefit from a solid makeover. Choosing the perfect paint color is challenging, and it sure looks like this homeowner struggled with committing to a single shade. Still, picking one and sticking with it is probably the best way to go.

9. More than a few missing links

You can keep the gate locked and closed but without the rest of the fence, what’s the point? Perhaps the homeowner has a great sense of humor and wants to attract guests drawn to irony.

10. Indoor/outdoor shower

With shower heads readily available, there’s no reason to resort to the garden hose! If this homeowner is willing to do such a cheap and quick repair, we wonder what other shortcuts are lurking within these walls? Probably best not to find out.

11. Bathroom off the kitchen — literally

Nothing like lounging in a warm tub immediately after eating, is there? This set-up takes convenience to new heights. Still, placing a wall between this large tub and the dining room table would probably make everyone feel a lot more comfortable, especially when it’s time to host Thanksgiving dinner.

What home fails have you seen in your search? Anything that tops the ones listed above?


5 Types of Outdoor Furniture That Last

As summer heats up, you’ll want to make sure your patio furniture is in tip top shape to maximize your enjoyment of the great outdoors. But what if you settle onto that furniture and hmmm…it doesn’t look nearly as nice as it once did? Well, you’re in luck because today there are dozens of choices for new outdoor patio furniture that will have your outdoor living spaces looking and feeling cozy and welcoming for both you and your guests.

Your choice in outdoor furniture is important, as you probably spend a lot of time on it during the summer months. It makes sense, then, to choose comfortable styles and fabrics, while still keeping in mind the care and maintenance needs of furniture. The first thing you should do is think about how you use your outdoor areas. Do you hold big parties for many people, or do you have more small, intimate cookouts? Do you do most of your cooking outdoors during the summer? These are important questions to ask when you’re considering new furniture purchases.

Below we have categorized a few of the most attractive choices for patio furniture, both by aesthetics and by their ease-of-maintenance. Use this as your guide when you go shopping.

1. Wrought Iron Furniture

Wrought iron is classic, sturdy, and timeless-looking. If you live in an area of high winds, you won’t have to worry about your patio furniture blowing away. There are so many styles, colors, and designs with wrought iron that it is sure to fit your style, no matter what that might be. But don’t plan to use this type of outdoor furniture if you’ll be moving pieces around a lot. They are hefty and will leave marks if dragged across the deck.

Because the paint on wrought iron can chip, see if there is a touch-up paint in the same color available to purchase when you buy your set of furniture. You’ll be able to use the touch up anytime you find scratches or chips, and it’ll keep your furniture looking like brand new. To clean, just wipe down with a damp cloth. If deeper cleaning is necessary, wipe down with a solution of dishwashing detergent and warm water, and then rinse with your garden hose.

2. Aluminum Furniture

Aluminum patio furniture is great if you want an easy-care solution that you can effortlessly move around. Aluminum won’t rust, and it’s super lightweight. Choose cushions that you can easily replace, as the aluminum frame will probably significantly outlast your cushions. When you’re shopping, make sure that the hardware on your furniture is rust-proof, and choose a powder-coated, UV-resistant finish. Check the welds to make sure they are seamless, and look sturdy.

To clean aluminum furniture, just wipe it down with a damp cloth. If you see scuff marks, you can very gently use a bit of Soft Scrub on a soft, damp cloth, but be careful – you don’t want to scratch the finish, especially if it’s shiny. And never use abrasive cleaners on aluminum. Rinse off with your garden hose.

3. Polymer and Plastic Furniture

If easy care and maintenance are what you’re looking for, synthetics are where it’s at. Plastic patio furniture created from recycled plastics are fantastic if you live in a saltwater environment. This furniture can’t ever rust and is designed to last in difficult environments. Marine-grade polymers can also be used. They’re heavy, sturdy, and have been designed to look just like painted wood. You can leave this furniture out all year round without any ill effects, and cleaning is easy with a simple dish soap and water solution and a damp cloth. Rinse with your garden hose.

4. Real Wood Furniture

The type of wood your furniture is made of is crucial if you want to avoid things like splitting, rotting, and bugs. You want dense wood such as teak or eucalyptus, or a hardy wood such as cedar. Teak and Eucalyptus are easier to maintain because they don’t need to be sealed on a yearly basis, but cedar is naturally moisture- and bug-resistant.

Clean your wood furniture with a soft brush and a solution of water and Murphy’s Oil Soap. Hose down well and dry with shop towels.

5. Cushion Fabrics

Choosing new cushions is a great way to make older furniture look new again. They can also be the most pricey part of your patio set, so make sure you choose wisely!

If price is no object, look for fabric designed for outdoor use that is UV-resistant, as well as resistant to moisture, mold, and stains. And bring your cushions indoors when you’re not using them – you’ll get much more life out of your investment.


It’s Farmer’s Market Season

Nothing says summer is here like the first day of the Farmer’s Market. Seeing all of the fresh-grown produce, sampling the locally grown honey, and taste-testing the initial batch of homemade strawberry jam makes us wish we could experience summer’s farmers markets all year long.

Lakeville is fortunate enough to have two opportunities each week to experience all the wonders the St. Paul Farmer’s Market holds in store. On Wednesdays from 12pm-5pm, vendors set up in the parking lot between Ace Hardware and Main Street. Then on Saturdays from 9am-1pm they move across the street to the parking lot at the Lakeville Arts Center. And when we say “farmer’s market” we’re not just talking about fruits and vegetables. Even at the local Lakeville markets you can find vendors with fresh-cut flowers, locally made jellies and jams, organic meats, just-baked bread, herbs, and more. If you visit their website you can find the schedule for other local farmer’s markets as well as this handy graphic showing peak season for many of the items you’ll find at the market.

Of course, the local farmers market isn’t the only place you can buy locally grown produce, but we love it because it comes right to us in downtown Lakeville! The St. Paul Farmers Market has other locations throughout the metro, including their flagship set up in downtown St. Paul.

Flower Market

If you’re up for driving around the cities, you’ll find a wide variety of other markets, including the big one in downtown Minneapolis. The Minneapolis Farmers Market has been at its current location of Lyndale and Glenwood Avenue North since 1937 but its roots go all the way back to 1876. The Lyndale location is open year-round: daily during the summer and on Saturdays through the rest of the year.


Living in Minnesota, we also have access to an amazing free resource at Minnesota Grown. If you visit their website you can search their online directory of farmer’s markets, pick-your-own farms, and other local producers. They have an event calendar, resources on how to prepare your farm-fresh finds, and more!

Farmers Market

Tell us, what’s your favorite local farmers market? And what’s your favorite thing to buy? Do you go for the flowers? The fresh baked goods? The sun-ripened produce? If you haven’t been to a farmers market yet this year, we strongly suggest you take the time… it’s worth it!


Hug Your Home Challenge – June Tips

If you’ve been keeping up with The Property Geeks 2018 Hug Your Home Challenge then you know we’re now halfway through the year! If you haven’t been keeping up, it’s not too late to join in. Click here to get your free Hug Your Home Challenge checklist, a year full of home maintenance tips that will get your house in tip top shape. This month we’re kicking off summer so we’re going pretty easy on you.

Tweak Your Squeaks

For June, we’re checking hinges on cabinets and doors for pesky squeaks. Fixing an annoying noise can be as simple as spraying a little WD-40 on the hinge. If you don’t have WD-40 on hand, don’t fret. You can also use any number of items you’ve probably got sitting around the house. A bar of soap can be applied to a noisy hinge. Or you could use wax, petroleum jelly, olive oil or another kind of cooking oil, or even butter. The bottom line is… don’t suffer. If you’ve got a squeak, take the time to tweak it.






Revitalize Your Deck

Decks take a beating, especially here in Minnesota. Between the sun, the rain and the snow, it’s not unheard of for homeowners to have to refinish their deck every couple of years.

First, evaluate the condition of the deck. If the boards are in good shape you probably just need a deep cleaning and possibly a refinish. If boards are cracking or split, make those repairs first.

Next, use a deck cleaner to remove any dirt, stains or mildew. Follow the instructions on the label for application. Once the cleaner is ready to remove, consider using a pressure washer.

Tip: Make sure you use the right nozzle. Using one of the smaller ones can actually do more harm than good.

Once you’ve got a clean, even surface, decide on a stain or sealant. If the wood is in good shape, you might just need a clear layer of protection. Most homeowners opt for a little color which might mean a semi-transparent stain that lets the grain of the wood show through. If the wood is in rough shape there are products that provide more coverage and look almost like paint. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on whichever product you choose.

Tip: Make sure you check the weather forecast before applying stain. Most products will need to dry for a period of time before they should be exposed to water.

Mend Your Fences

As long as you’re cleaning and restaining the deck, you may as well take a look at the fence, too. Replace any rotted or cracked boards and make sure there aren’t any nails or screws sticking out. Fences typically don’t need to be stained or sealed as often as decks since the surface is vertical and isn’t exposed to foot traffic. A good powerwashing will clean off any dirt and debris. Fences can be sealed or stained with the same type of products you’d use on your deck.

Tip: To extend the life of your fence, keep the sprinklers from hitting it and trim any vines away. Any type of moisture will make the wood deteriorate faster.


Tackling these big projects early in the summer means plenty of relaxing summer weekends ahead! And if you’re not up for doing the work yourself, there are probably plenty of students or local businesses who would be willing to take on the task. We want to see your projects. Feel free to tag The Property Geeks on Facebook or Instagram so we can track your progress!