Michael Tradford
Last Update:
October 6, 2021
This author was thoroughly tested and approved by the experts at before joining the editorial board to ensure a high content quality.
Author Bio:
Michael was Marketing Director in Atlantic City and worked in the casino industry for several years before shifting over to numerous newspapers in New York and Chicago working his way up to Editor-in-Chief. His focus areas are mainly in the fields of sports, gambling, and politics. He has a Marketing Degree, visited Columbia University during his time in New York and is now Editor-in-Chief at AmericaGambles.
Michael was Marketing Director in Atlantic City and worked in the casino industry for several years before shifting over to numerous newspapers in New York and Chicago working his way up to Editor-in-Chief. His focus areas are mainly in the fields of sports, gambling, and politics. He has a Marketing Degree, visited Columbia University during his time in New York and is now Editor-in-Chief at AmericaGambles.

Understanding the House Edge

Have you ever stopped to wonder how Casinos seem to amass massive profit from gambling? Some people have the notion that Casinos make most of their profit from players losing bets. Well, not really. Gambling is a very huge business, so Casinos have an upper hand immediately the game starts. This is a built-in advantage called the house edge. In other words, the odds are stacked in their favor. Let’s take a look at the roulette house edge to see how it works. On every dollar betted, the casino keeps 5% as profit and returns 95% as winnings to the player on average. For example, if $100 is down for betting, the Casino retains $5 on the winnings of the player.

Information to know about House Edge
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  • The Casino has a built-in advantage in all its games

  • The longer you get to bet, the closer your losses will head towards the house edge.

  • Casinos need not beat every player all the time as they still get their profit on the long run.

  • Casinos earn their profit by simply getting you to play

How the House Edge Works

It is widely known to players, experienced and novices alike, that Casino games are games of chance, luck is the ultimate factor deciding whether a player wins or not, however, there are some games where skills come into play such as poker. Anytime a player places a bet in a Casino, the Casino instantly makes profit. It would definitely lose a number of bets, but in the long run, the Casino always makes profit, thanks to the House Edge.

Let’s take the online roulette as a sample. A great number of players place bets on red of black, we would see how the house edge works in this instance. There are 37 numbers, that’s including the 0. If the player is playing for 37 spins, at an average, the player would be expected to hit every number once. It is expected that the player, in those 37 spins, would hit black 18 times, hit the red 18 times and hit the green color once.

The player places $1 each on each of these numbers which totals $37. According to the average, a Casino player would win 18 times when hitting black, thus getting $36 in return, while the other 19 bets lose. The player is expected to gain $36 out of the $37 spent, meaning the house edge is estimated at 2.7%.

In the American roulette, where there are two zeroes, the player would be expected to get $36 back out of the $38 total which makes for a house edge of 5.26%. In every game, the Casino makes a small percentage of the bet whenever a player places the bet.

Casino games and their accompanied House Edge

The house edge is based entirely on the particular game and has nothing to do with the individual Casino. So, no matter which Casino you place the bet in, the rules of the game when playing determines the house edge.

Casino GameHouse Edge PercentageAmerican Roulette5.26%Blackjack0.5%Baccarat1.01% - 15. 75%Slots2-15%Craps0-16.67%Video Poker0.46%

You would observe that in a number of cases, the house edge is variable. This shows that the conditions within the game control the house edge, not the Casinos.


Return to Player (RTP)

If you are a regular slots player, you should be curious to know what RTP means. In slots, it means the total amount an individual machine has paid out throughout its usage, in relation to the amount Casino players have paid into it. In slot, if an RTP of 90% is paid out, then the remaining 10% is the machine’s house edge.

In the game of online Slots, skills and expertise does not improve your chances of winning, all players are equal and there’s no way for the player to better the odds. The player just selects the number of paylines he desires to play, hits and hopes for the best outcome. Slots offer a not-so-high RTP, and this is where Casinos make so much money. It’s often called a Casino’s biggest house edge for this reason. Modern slots like the video slots offer the player anything between 20-100 paylines when gambling, it is enticing because it hands the players more chances of winning, moreover, when a game has more paylines, it has a bigger impact on the house edge.

If a machine has 40 paylines and the player plays all 40 each time, the chances of winning increases a great deal, but if the player plays just 20 or less, the odds are slashed by half and chances of losing increase, which in turn, increases the Casino’s chances of winning. To play slots, search for the slots highest RTP, make sure to play the maximum number of paylines, and also ensure to play slots with bonus games.

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Different kinds of Traditional blackjack strategy can be found online and at offline Casinos in the US today.

Winnings in this game is decide partly by the player’s knowledge and skill, and of course, luck. Two strategies of playing this game, namely, the Standard rules and Basic Strategy play a part in the 0.5% house edge.  

Strategies for playing Blackjack

Some players have devised a way to protect their bankroll and beat the house edge.

  1. Blackjack Charts: It is a popular strategy amongst casino players, and it is quite successful. It requires the player to memorize the blackjack charts. These charts show the player every possible result for the cards held by the player and dealer. This would dictate the way the player chooses, depending on the cards on the table.
  2. Composition Strategies: These are more complex than Blackjacks, but you must be familiar with the charts to try it. The player uses the card values that have come out from the deck as a guide to know what cards are left. When performed well, this strategy could bring down the house edge to as little as 0.18%.


The Roulette Strategy comes in variations. There is the American, European and French Roulette. The style of play   affects the house edge in this game. It is said that the American Roulette delivers the worst outcome overtime, unlike the European and French who have a lower house edge.

American Roulette

Here, the wheel has 38 pockets, instead of 37 like the French and European. It also possesses two zeroes (0 & 00).

BetPayoutHouse Edge PercentageRed / Black1:15.26%Odd / Even1:15.26%1-181:15.26%19-361:15.26%1-122:15.26%13-242:15.26%25-362:15.26%6 line5:15.26%First 5 (0,00,1,2,3)6: 17.89%4 numbers8:15.26%3 numbers11:15.26%2 numbers17:15.26%Single number35:15.26%

How to Calculate the House Edge

First, the player needs to get a close look at the true odds of an outcome occurring versus the amount the house will have to pay out for it. Below is a detailed explanation.

  1. As said earlier, an American roulette has 38 pockets, that is, pockets 1- 36 + 0 + 00 which equals 38 pockets in total.
  2. The true odds of guessing a number right are 38:1, but the house only pays 35:1
  3. This means that on $1 bet, the player gains $36, which is $2 less than the true odds should pay back.
  4. This $2 stands for the house edge, and it’s calculated as 2 x 1/38 which equals 0526 or 5.26%.

This calculation is only different when you play the first 5 numbers (0, 00, 1, 2, 3), and it only occurs in the American roulette. It’s referred by gamblers as the sucker because odds leap to 7.89%.

European Roulette

The European roulette is pretty consistent, it only has a house edge of 2.7%, which means you make more money over time than the American version. This means for every dollar spent, you are losing 0.027 in the European Roulette against the American roulette where you lose as high as 0.0526 cents on every dollar. This difference occurs as a result of the absence of the two zeroes (00) in the European wheel. By taking this pocket away, the true odd reduces 37:1 for single number bets, which is still paid as 35:1 in the European roulette, an then reduces the difference between the true odds and Casino odds to just a single unit (1). Therefore, 1 x (1 x 37) equals 0.027 or 2.7%.

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Video Poker

The video poker is played online or at physical Casinos. It is played on Consoles. Just like other computer games around, the player plays against the machine. There are so many kind of poker games to choose from, all offering their own distinct paytables and different house edges. It offers one of the highest returns and a possible advantage over the house. Gambling in Poker generally, requires some skill.

Poker Variants

  1. Jacks or Better – It requires some skill to play, and using basic strategy players should get up to 99.46% in RTP.
  2. Deuces Wild - Players get their winnings by forming a royal flush using one of two wild cards. If played perfectly, expect a 100.71% RTP
  3. Bonus Parker – It offers an RTP of 99.17%
  4. Joker Poker – Here, with the Joker being a wild card, it pays out on a pair king or even higher. It offers an RTP of 100.64%.
  5. Double Bonus Parker – Performed well, you should expect an RTP of 100.17%

How to win in Poker

  1. You need to compare paytables- Try and search for the paytable that pays the highest
  2. Bet the Maximum Bet- This will pay out higher odds
  3. Practice on the free version- It is advisable to practice on the free mode, especially online because it improves your gambling skills in Poker. However, there is no return.

Why do People Still Play in Spite of the House Edge?

You might wonder why people still play even though they are aware of the house edge, this is a common question amongst non-gamblers. And it is a valid question. People continue gambling because there’s every chance of winning even though the odds are against them. Getting heads twice in succession might be a long shot because the odds are heavily against you, but it could happen.

Another reason people play is because it provides cheap entertainment, especially if you play right. A player using Proper Strategy at a $5 table should lose only $2.50 per hour. If $5 is tipped per hour, there should be a total loss of $7.50, which is obviously cheaper than going to the movies, concerts or most entertainment shows.

Where can I Access the most Appropriate House Edge?

Now that you have the basic knowledge of how the house edge works, you are eager to start gambling and beat the house edge. You want a trusted place to bet with your money? Well, this has been made simple for you. On our online casino comparison page, we intend to give you proper guidance and help, so we are giving you free tips and recommended genuine and perfect sites for you to place your bets on. Play and win on your favorite blackjack and slot games.

Just sign up on the site of your choice out of the available ones. These sites offer live betting options and latest gambling tips. Privacy Policy requires that websites request you to enable use of cookies, you must accept this to progress. We can link you to the Casino of your choice with low house edges, bonuses, promotions and high return rates. Place your bet and place it wisely, if u need help, our customer service are always on ground to help. Remember to take a look at the Terms and Conditions of websites before gambling.

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Take Advantage of the House Edge
Casinos make massive profit from each bet placed, however, that doesn’t mean they take all your money. You could use this to your advantage if you cash in on bonuses and promotions offered by the Casinos. Also take time to look for the highest paytables, and if you are a slots player, look for the machines with the highest RTP to play. A very successful player plays the maximum bet to win, do the same, and one of these days, you would hit big. Start gambling and start winning!
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