8 Ways You're Inviting Spiders Into Your Home, According to Experts
You can help keep arachnids out by following these simple tips.
Whether you're profoundly arachnophobic or just insect averse in general, no one loves the idea of coming across a spider unexpectedly in their home. Of course, the skilled hunters are great for cutting back on pesky bugs like mosquitoes and flies in your garden. But the fact that they play their part in being a good neighbor doesn't bring much comfort when they've taken up residence in your living space—especially if they're potentially venomous. Fortunately, it's still possible to keep your space arachnid-free with minimal effort just by making sure they stay outside. Read on to see all the ways you're inviting spiders into your home, according to experts.
Using too much outdoor lighting
At the very least, we use exterior lighting to help pull into the driveway and walk to the front door after dark. Unfortunately, this can also be drawing in spiders who are looking for their next meal—especially if you're turning your house into a bright beacon at night.
"Spiders are attracted to light, so outdoor fixtures can draw them in from the outside," says Jim Skinner of A&C Pest Management. "If you have exterior lights that attract many bugs, this is likely a contributing factor to higher spider populations in and around your home. Consider switching to yellow-tinted lights or using motion sensor lights that are activated only when necessary."
Having cracks or crevices in your walls
All homes require regular upkeep, from making sure the roof isn't leaking to checking in on the status of your foundation. Sometimes, even running a quick inspection can reveal wear and tear you didn't even know was there. And besides helping to keep your home warmer, experts say patching up those hard-t0-see holes will also keep spiders outside where they belong.
"One of the less obvious ways you can be inviting spiders into your home is by having cracks or crevices in walls or windowsills. Spiders are able to crawl through these tiny gaps, which gives them easy access to your living space," says Ken Unger, president of Suburban Pest Control. "If you notice any cracks or crevices around entryways, it's important that you seal them up to prevent spiders from entering your home."
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Keeping clutter around
Even if you're not the tidiest person, no one likes a messy house—except, perhaps, for spiders. Experts warn that besides being unsightly, an unkempt home can make it more likely that arachnids will want to hang around, particularly if they're in out-of-the-way areas like basements or attics.
"Spiders love cluttered areas because they provide plenty of hiding spots and places to spin their webs," explains Skinner. "To reduce spider activity in your home, make sure to keep all floors, closets, and basements free from chaotic messes."
Having another pest problem
Spiders will only stick around someplace where they know they can get a good meal. If you're dealing with any other pest issues, it will make it all the more likely spiders will turn your home into theirs.
"The presence of insects and other prey in homes is a common reason for spiders to come inside," Glen Ramsey, BCE, senior technical services manager for pest control company Orkin, tells Best Life.
The best way to keep the bugs away usually involves taking care of your trash promptly—especially your food waste. If you notice the problem isn't improving, you should consider calling a professional pest services company to help.
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Having open windows and doors
There's nothing like keeping your home smelling fresh and feeling cool with a steady outdoor breeze. But if you're leaving your windows wide open, you're opening up your home for an arachnid invasion.
"While natural ventilation is great for homes, it also gives spiders an easy access point," says Skinner. "Make sure to screen all windows and doors with tight-fitting grids or mesh screens to keep spiders from entering without even having to try."
Bringing them in as stowaways
Not all intruders have to break their way into your home. In some cases, bugs can stow themselves away in everyday objects and wind up being brought in accidentally.
"Spiders are also unknowingly introduced to the home's interior by bringing in infested items," explains Ramsey. "This includes things such as plants, firewood, clothing, and other items stored in attics, basements, or other storage areas."
If you're concerned, Ramsey says it's best to store your seasonal clothing items in sealed plastic containers or space bags and to shake them out someplace outdoors to ensure no arachnids are working their way in. You should also inspect any new houseplants for webs or other signs of spider activity.
READ THIS NEXT: 7 Cleaning Habits That Attract Spiders.
Growing plants near your home
Having a lush lawn with plenty of bushes and flowers can be a fantastic way to brighten up your home and draw attention to your property. Unfortunately, keeping vegetation so close to your exterior walls can also be an open invitation for spiders.
"You should also remove any plants near the outside walls of your house," Maria Richmond from Ransford Pest Control tells Best Life. "This includes vines and windowsill plant shelves because these are well known to attract spiderwebs."
Leaving laundry lying around
Laundry always seems to be the one chore you can never keep under control. But besides not being able to find something to wear, keeping your clothes strewn about can also make it more likely for spiders to stick around.
"Dirty clothes on the floor are a spider's paradise, as they provide the perfect hiding spots," says Skinner. "If you have piles of laundry in your home, be sure to store them neatly in closets or drawers so that spiders can't take up residence."