Centipedes have one pair of legs per body segment. The house centipede is brown and has long, spindly, legs, and it can grow to a length of 1 1/2 inches. This common structure-infesting pest prefers basements, crawlspaces, and other damp dark spaces. House centipedes disturb building occupants primarily because of their size and rapid movement. They can bite, but it usually causes only minor discomfort.