House edge is one of the most critical aspects of gambling where you play some casino poker hands or other games. However, many players don’t understand how it governs games and how to use it to make smart betting decisions.
If you fall into this category, the good news is that you will learn everything you need in this post.
Also, some players’ hatred for math is another reason they don’t know much about house edges.
In this article, we will break down the house edge math in a way that is easy to understand.
Just before we begin, have it at the back of your mind that by the time you finish this article, you will most likely be interested in finding the best casino websites that offer the lowest house edges.
Luckily, OLBG.com sorted that out for you by creating a comprehensive list; you can check it out here.
Now, let’s get started.
The basics of Casino House Edge
You may have heard the popular saying ‘’ the house always wins’’; this is due to the House edge.
House edge is the statistical percentage of the edge that the casino has in any given situation.
Some games and activities have a fixed advantage, and some have a variable edge that changes depending on a past event and the player’s strategy.
Here is an example:
When you play baccarat and bet on the banker’s hand, the casino house edge is fixed at 1.06%.
This essentially means that the casino will keep 1.06% of all the money you bet on the banker’s hand in baccarat.
If you make bets totaling $100, the casino will keep $1.06. Of course, it doesn't mean that casinos will take $1.06 out of every bet, but this is the outcome you can expect to have if you continue to play.
In any given session, you can come away with a big profit, loss, or anywhere in between. But the longer you play, the closer your historical results will be, up to 1.06% loss for the casino.
You can determine the amount by multiplying the house edge percentage by the total amount of your bets. You need to convert the percentage to a decimal by moving the decimal in the percentage of two places to the left. Thus, 1.06% is converted to 0.0106 as a decimal.
0.0106 X $100 = $1.06
If you have ever played baccarat, you will know that when you bet all of $100, you either win $100 minus the commission or lose $100.
You also probably know that if you make 100 bets of $1 each, you’re are much more likely to end up with $98.94, which is the long-term average outcome.
Overall the casino works in volume while the individual bettor works with their individual bets.
Here is a list of casino games with their house edge percentages
Of course, various games have different odds and house edge, so here is an example of what you can expect:
- Blackjack – 0.25% to 2%
- Baccarat – 1.06% on the banker’s hand and 1.24% on the player’s hand
- Roulette – 2.75% on a single zero wheel and 5.26% on a double zero wheel
- Craps – 1.41% on the pass line, 0% on odds bets, 1.36% on no pass line
- Slot machines – 1% to over 10% (most slots are 3% and over)
- Video poker – 0.25% to more than 10%
In the following section, we will discuss how you can use house edges to improve your winning odds during gambling.
Easy Ways to use House Edge in Gambling
The best way to use the casino house edge is to place bets with a lower edge.
- If you are looking for a bet with a low edge that does not require the use of strategy or playing decisions, then banking baccarat is the best bet.
- If you want to play a game where you make actual decisions and can use strategy, blackjack and video poker are good options.
- If you are the type of gamer who wants to work hard for a shot at winning, poker games, sports betting, and race track betting is good options.
Online betting with full odds available is a good combination of bets. The house edge of 1.41% is higher than the edge of the baccarat banker’s hand, but when you retreat to full odds, you are making bigger bets with a house edge of 0%.
Once you understand what the house edge is and how to use it, you will be better positioned than most players and can use the knowledge to make smarter gaming decisions.
This will surely help you to have more winning sessions and reduce losses over time.
You can also use the house edge to figure out how much it costs you to play your preferred games. This can help you determine the amount that you would lose.
A simple formula to use is as follows:
Amount wagered per hour multiplied by the house edge = Expected loss per hour.
Here is an example: If you play roulette on a single zero wheel and make 30 bets per hour of $20 each, that gives a total of $600 per hour.
Using the formula – $600 x 2.7% (converted to 0.027) = $16.20 expected loss per hour.
This is how much it costs for you to play this game. However, remember that the expected loss of $16.20 per hour is a long-term average, and you can have much bigger swings in the short-term.
At any given time, you can lose more or less. But the longer you play, the closer your actual results will match the expected results.
Improve your gaming skills using the house edge
You can do nothing when you play games like roulette, baccarat, and craps to change the house edge. The long term results are going to be a loss in line with the house edge.
However, there are many games like Ultimate Texas Holdem or 3 Card Poker, where your decisions actually influence the outcome and casino edge. Also, when played correctly, blackjack offers one of the lowest house edges.
Make sure to study the strategy if you choose any of these games, and you will surely boost your results.
We hope that this article has done justice to the subject, and you are now more familiar with everything involved in casino house edges. Good luck!