If you are an avid casino player, then you know what a house edge is. For those who don’t know a house edge is defined as the advantage a casino has over a player. This is shown as a percentage. The higher the house edge percentage, the higher the chance that the house will win over the player. This is why some players try to find casinos that have a low house edge.
The question however is, can you use a low house edge that a casino has to your advantage? Before that question can be answered, you first need to understand that the house edge is a percentage that is given to each game in the casino. This means that the house edge for blackjack will be different from that which is given to baccarat.
All casino games have a specific house edge, which is why some people tend to steer clear of games where the house edge is higher than most. Examples of games that usually have a high house edge include craps, Keno, roulette, and slot machines. Games that usually have fairly low house edge advantage include blackjack, video poker, and baccarat.
Which Games Have the Lowest House Edge?
As mentioned above, there are games that have a high house edge and some that have a very low house edge. Not all house edges are the same however, so it’s up to you to determine this by trying out these games at various casinos to see for yourself. As a general rule however, these games are usually the ones that have low house edges everywhere.
Black Jack – This is one of the games people love to play primarily because they have a higher chance of winning. Without card counting, a person stands a higher chance of winning against the house in this game since it has a .28% house edge, which is the lowest of all games.
Baccarat – Another game that people love to play is this card game due to its relatively low house edge. This game’s edge is dependent on who you bet on. If you bet on the banker, it’s 1.06%. If you bet on the player, it’s around 1.24%. If you bet on a tie however, which usually pays 8:1, the edge is at 14%.
Video Poker – This is also another game that has a very low house edge. The house advantage is usually in the mid to low .30%, which is good news to avid poker players.
Other games that have rather low house edges include pai gow, pai gow poker, and sic bo.
Games with rather high house edges include Keno, 3-card poker, and roulette. The house edge for slot machines can range from 2% to 27%, which is why people still try their luck with these machines. The huge disparity in the percentages is due to the varying RTPs of these machines. Keno also has around a 25% house advantage, but the main reason why people still gravitate towards it is due to the lure of instant riches that can be had, much like the lottery.
Some games that have varying house edges are games like craps, roulette, and sic bo. This is because the house edge is dependent on what you are betting on in these games. For example, with Sic Bo, the house edge is between 2% and 33%. This is dependent on what you place your bet on. The same goes for craps, with pass/come bets having a house edge of 1.41% and hard hops bets having a house edge of 14%. In roulette, the house edge is highest for the 00 bets, which is at 5.25%.
Can You Use This Information to Your Advantage?
So, can you use a low house edge to your advantage? The answer is yes, you can. You can choose to play games with a low house advantage in order to increase your chances of winning. Of course, along with the low house advantage comes the lower amounts that you can win. For Blackjack, you can only win the same amount that you bet. The same goes for baccarat and other games.
For those with bigger house advantages, people still bet on them due to the huge returns that come when they win. This is why slot machines are still pretty popular among gamblers. Despite the high house advantage, people still have dreams of instant riches. This is why lottery style games like Keno and slot machines that have huge jackpots are still popular and get lots of attention.
If you want to use the low house edge to your advantage, you need to be strategic and to play smart. This is what most professional gamblers do – use the low house edge to earn a living out of gambling. This is also why professional gamblers are usually seen playing blackjack, baccarat, and other similar games that guarantee better odds of winning.
Gamblers who gamble for a living also take into account the hourly expected loss when they play. You can’t always win (unless you count cards and don’t get caught), so you should always take into account the possible losses you will have when you play. For blackjack and baccarat, you have to take into account the number of bets per hour and the number of players at your table. Hourly loss is calculated as house edge multiplied by average bet multiplied by bets per hour.
To show this in action, let’s take the house edge of baccarat as an example. With a 1.06% house edge, multiplied by an average bet of $100, and multiplied by an average number of hands per hour of 80, you end up with an hourly expected loss of roughly $84. The same goes for blackjack. With the same ratio and a .28% house edge, you get an hourly expected loss of roughly $22. This may be why people who play for a living choose to play blackjack.
The calculation changes with each game so the amount in hourly losses will vary per game. Highest losses per hour are with slot machines and Keno but these are also the games that pose a higher prize payout should a person win. This is why you will still see people playing these games regularly.