Understanding House Edge and House Drop

Casino House Edge

You’ve probably come across the term “House Edge” and to a lesser extent the term “House drops” in articles about online casinos and games odds and we’re often asked questions about these terms, their meanings and if they are the same thing or not. So we decided to write a short explanation on these terms to help players better understand their meanings and how these can affect game play at both land based and online casinos.

To answer the last question first, House Edge and House Drops (also known as casino gaming drops) are not the same thing.

House Edge

The House Edge refers to the house advantage, usually expressed as a percentage that a casino has over a player in a particular casino game. To put it simply, the House Edge is the money that the casino will keep in the long run. If the house edge is 5% on a certain game, then out of every $100 that the player wagers, the casino, on average, will earn $5. We say “on average” because it is possible for players to win big or lose everything, but over a long period of time the average will hold true.

In a game of blackjack, skilled players playing according to blackjack strategy can lower the house edge to around 1%, while the house edge on the same game variation can be considerably higher for unskilled players. Slot machines on the other hand, usually maintain a uniform house edge as they are not influenced by strategy. On both though, the longer you play the more likely it is that you will begin to lose, even if you win initially and the house edge will begin to claim its percentage of your wagers.

House Drops

House Drop or Casino Gaming Drop is the amount of money the average player spends (or “drops”) at the casino (also called “the house”).

The longer a player plays, the more likely it is that they will begin to lose, even if the house edge is low, because inevitably the law of averages will play out. If a player loses 25% of his/her money in a visit to the casino, this amount is said to be the “house drop“. Unlike the house edge, the house drop continues to accumulate over time as the player loses money it accumulates into the overall deficit total. Obviously if a player plays for a short period and wins, this offsets the house drop for that gaming session, but if the player decides to play winnings back to the casino, and loses, the house drop comes into play once again.

As you can see from the above explanation, it is very important to monitor your game play time in a session, if you win big rather cash out and enjoy the money because putting it back in in the hope of winning even bigger will give that infamous “law of averages” the chance to affect your balance. Winning streaks are great, but they don’t stay “winning” forever, so rather play wisely.