The southern house spider is the spider most commonly found in and around houses in Florida. Several other species are also found around homes and gardens, including the venomous widow and recluse spiders.
The southern house spider is a brown, gray or black spider about one-half inch long in size, not including its legs. It crawls across nearly anything, including people, but it is not aggressive and will not bite unless threatened. It is sometimes mistaken for a brown recluse spider.
The gray wall jumper, light gray with hairy legs, is often found on exterior walls. The green-to-yellow sac spider is active at night when it crawls along walls and ceilings looking for food. The webs of the long-legged funnel weaver are found in the corners of sheds, barns and basements. This light brown to gray spider is often seen trapped in sinks and bathtubs. All of these spiders average from one-third to one-half inch in body size and are not poisonous.
In 2013, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services issued a venomous pest alert for widow and recluse spiders. Fairly uncommon and not native to Florida, these spiders are sometimes found hidden under things near houses. Wearing gloves is recommended if working around wood piles, lifting boards or opening storage containers.