While a lot of people are quick to squash any and every spider they find in their home, that might not be the best way to go about things. Spiders are a lot more important than you might realize.
One group of researchers actually conducted a visual survey of around 50 homes in North Carolina and took the time to go over the different spiders that can be found. While a lot of people are quick to assume every ‘big’ spider they see is a black widow, brown recluse, or something else that could potentially be deadly, that is 9 times out of 10, not the case. The most common household spiders are cobweb spiders and cellar spiders.
Killing a spider in your home is also putting your home at risk of other creepy crawly creatures making it their home. A lot of these spiders eat flies, roaches, mosquitoes, and other spiders. Some of the insects they kill are potentially disease carriers and in making your home their home they are also helping keep you healthy. Don’t get me wrong, I know many people are a bit terrified of spiders but is that really an excuse to kill them?
The abstract of the study/survey I mentioned above goes as follows:
Although humans and arthropods have been living and evolving together for all of our history, we know very little about the arthropods we share our homes with apart from major pest groups. Here we surveyed, for the first time, the complete arthropod fauna of the indoor biome in 50 houses (located in and around Raleigh, North Carolina, USA). We discovered high diversity, with a conservative estimate range of 32–211 morphospecies, and 24–128 distinct arthropod families per house. The majority of this indoor diversity (73%) was made up of true flies (Diptera), spiders (Araneae), beetles (Coleoptera), and wasps and kin (Hymenoptera, especially ants: Formicidae). Much of the arthropod diversity within houses did not consist of synanthropic species but instead included arthropods that were filtered from the surrounding landscape. As such, common pest species were found less frequently than benign species. Some of the most frequently found arthropods in houses, such as gall midges (Cecidomyiidae) and book lice (Liposcelididae), are unfamiliar to the general public despite their ubiquity. These findings present a new understanding of the diversity, prevalence, and distribution of the arthropods in our daily lives. Considering their impact as household pests, disease vectors, generators of allergens, and facilitators of the indoor microbiome, advancing our knowledge of the ecology and evolution of arthropods in homes has major economic and human health implications.
If you still don’t want these little eight-legged creatures in your home you could always just relocate them. Sometimes they end up trapped in our homes as it is and just cannot find their way out. I for one will be allowing any spiders I find in my home to stay here. Live and let live, they are probably one of the best ways to get rid of and keep pests under control.