What Is the House Edge?

Casino House Edge

Lots of people gamble at the casino and tend to bet without counting. And when the moment arrives and they win something, they are overwhelmed with joy that they have conquered the system, the machine. This is what most people tend to believe. However, this is not the case.

A casino would certainly not volunteer and risk losing money at your expense. If the sector is so flourishing and continues to develop, it is because the casinos are making money and certainly not only a little.

Whether in physical casinos or online, the situation remains the same and the same principles apply. Ultimately, the casino always comes out the winner. An online casino is a business, not a charity, and therefore does not throw money down the drain. And here, as in other businesses, there is a pattern of which main goal is to ensure profitability.

In this article, we will explain what the casino house edge is in various games (in percentage terms) as well as the mistakes the players make when calculating the casino house edge.

Casino House Edge – Overview

The house edge is the basis when it comes to gambling. The principle is that the bank or the casino always strive to make a profit. Of course, for players, we are talking about the notion of luck, the hope of gain, expected return or payout rate.

Casino games are created in such a way that the casino has an advantage by default. It does not matter which game you choose, the chances of the casino to win your money are much higher than the likelihood that you will take home the casino’s money. The casino deducts a certain percentage from the amount you bet to make a profit. However, the latter is not always indicated. And besides, it varies depending on the type of games in question. It ranges from 1% to 25%, depending on the case. Of course, we can always consider the luck factor. But in general, even if in the short term you may not lose too much, the initial advantage will eventually erode over time.

The Payout Percentage

In most cases, although everyone recognizes the always advantageous position of the casino, it is rare that players understand the actual operation. The fact is that it depends on a lot of parameters: the principles of the game, how to play it, the equipment used and when to bet.

In addition to all this, there are certain cases where rules have been specially introduced in ambiguous situations and always with the aim of benefiting casinos. Let us quote, for example, blackjack: when the two parts lose the hand at the same time, the gain returns in this case to the house.

The actual chances compared to the odds of winning are minimal, if not non-existent, although there are still some exceptions. The house edge is often achieved by establishing the odds of winning so that they are less than the actual odds. Take for example European roulette. You can make a simple bet by placing a chip on one of the numbers 0 to 36. If you win, the dealer offers you 35 more chips. In this case, you have a 1 in 37 chance that the ball will fall on the number you chose and 36 in 37 chances of losing. Your gain is therefore equal to: -1 x 36/37 + 35 x 1/37 ≈ -0.027. The negative sign indicates that you lose an average of 2.7% of your stake each time you bet.

It is this small difference between the actual amount that would correspond to your chance of winning and what the casino pays you that translates into an advantage for the casino. It’s a percentage, and as we’ve mentioned, it’s different depending on the type of game.

The casino house edge, the chances of an advantage in favor of the casino, represent the average gross profit that a casino can confidently expect from every game. In the case of games with a low house edge, casinos can receive only 1-2% of the profit. In other games, the profit of a casino can be from 15 to 20% or even more.

The income of a casino from a roulette wheel with 00 is 5.26%. So, say, with each $ 1 million, the casino expects to receive a little more than $ 50,000. The remaining $ 950,000 is returned to gamblers.

Casinos do not aim to take everything from the players at once.  Their task is to make sure that clients come out with a slightly lower amount than they came, leaving the difference on the gambling table.

And be careful, we’re not just talking about starting bets here. Almost all the money you spend on gambling is exposed to the house edge. So, imagine what you are going to have to give the casino before you can hope to win or get anything.

Major Mistakes Players Make

Many of the gamblers who have an idea about this subject, still do not have a correct understanding of the house edge influence on their bankrolls. In their opinion, the 5% house edge in roulette means that if you sit at the table with $ 100 and play a couple of hours, you will lose maximum $ 5 as a result. They are not aware that the casino house edge does not apply to the original amount, but to the total amount that the player will wager.

For example, suppose you make bets of $ 5 per spin of roulette, and there are 50 such spins per hour. Even though some of your bets win and some lose, the total amount per hour is $ 250. Thus, at the end of four hours of gambling, you will lose 5% of $ 1000, which is $ 50. In other words, 10 times more than you expected!

An Additional Advantage of the Casino

Casino fact: There are no watches or windows in casinos. Thus, players lose their sense of time.

The longer you play, the higher the chances that the result of your game will coincide with the casino edge. In the short term, you may have benefits; however, after a long time, the house edge will finally beat you. Knowing this, casinos do everything in their power to keep the visitors within their walls for as long as possible. So, many beginners may be pleasantly surprised by free drinks, but alcohol is unlikely to improve their results.

Casino Games with the Best and Worst Chances of Winning

Even though the probability theory is always in favor of the casino, in many casinos the house edge has a different percentage. The game with the lowest casino house edge is blackjack. If you have an ideal betting strategy, then the house edge is 0,5%. In some extremely liberal casinos, the blackjack house edge may even be 0,28%. The dice house edge is 0.8%, followed by baccarat – 1.06%.

The lowest house edge is possible only if the gambler plays perfectly, which rarely happens. This indicator increases in direct proportion to the level of player amateurism. Roulette remains one of the most popular casino games, but the house edge here is as much as 5.26%. Slot machines have a high indicator – 17% as well as keno – as much as 25%.

The House Edge and Slot Machines

Speaking of machines, we are referring more specifically to slot machines and video lottery terminals. These are the most common, but also the most obvious cases where the odds of winning are found to be lower than the real odds.

The house edge is here called the theoretical hold. It is so named since it is random and depends on probabilities. Although the results and the amounts retained vary with each game, in the end, they will come close to what was initially planned. Again, the casino wins in the long run.

Which Games to Choose?

Do not forget  the very principle of the house edge. If you hope to win, it would be best to make the right choice for the games you are going to participate in.

If you want to play slot machines or roulette for example at all costs, do it in moderation and do not linger too long. Because the more you play, the more the casino wins. And even if you do receive something in the end, you will never get your entire stake that has already been taxed by the casino.

Choose the games where you can dominate the game by being smarter and thus be able to benefit from some cash inflows.


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