The raffle to win a house in south London continues to be delayed for a second time, meaning the prize draw will now take place a minimum of a year after first advertised.
Raffle House first launched tickets to win a one-bedroom flat in Brixton in April, and the winner was because of be announced after June of the year.
However, the closing date continues to be significantly extended for any second time. A winner now will not be drawn until 30 June 2022.
We explain what this means for those who’ve already bought tickets, and whether housing raffles are really a great way to look for a home.
Why has got the house raffle draw been delayed again?
In an email to entrants sent on 20 November, Benno Spencer – the founder and CEO of Raffle House – explained the company needs 'a bit more time for you to sell the 150,000 tickets necessary to cover the property and it is associated costs'.
The main prize may be the London property, which Raffle House says is worth lb650,000. There's also three lb1,000 cash prizes for runners up.
Tickets are lb5 each, and despite introducing offers offering free tickets when individuals buy several, the organization still hasn’t were able to shift the necessary number.
Those who bought tickets once the raffle was first launched could have been expecting to hear the end result at the end of June 2022. However the draw was delayed by five months, with a brand new date of November 2022.
Now, it's been delayed by a further seven months until 30 June 2022.
The email states that Raffle House is 'committed to awarding the property because the prize' – and, as the terms and conditions state that the closing date could be extended in the organiser’s discretion, existing ticket holders will have to hold back until that may happen.
What happens if they still don’t sell enough tickets?
Usually, if the minimum number of entries isn't met by the closing date, a draw will still take place however the prize value will disappear.
According to the Raffle House conditions and terms, this eventuality could possibly mean the winner would receive a cash prize instead of the property.
Alternatively, the winner could still get the home, but without the 'discretionary prize bonus'. This refers back to the additional amount of up to lb42,000 that may be due if stamp duty is payable through the winner, plus a lb3,000 cash lump sum payment to cover ground rent, council tax and bills, and up to lb1,500 towards the winner’s attorney's fees.
In this, the winner would have to pay stamp duty on the property they've won.
If the property was still worth lb650,000 and the winner intended to use it his or her main home, they’d have to pay lb22,500; someone using the property like a buy-to-let or holiday home would pay lb42,000.
The organisers still hope to sell enough tickets so that you can hand out the property and cover the fees and prize bonus, too.
Are housing raffles ever successful?
To our knowledge, no British property has have you been successfully sold using a raffle.
This is due to many early raffles being shut down through the Gambling Commission, and subsequent competitions not being able to sell the necessary quantity of tickets.
If a housing raffle doesn't sell the necessary quantity of tickets, the alternative cash prize can be worth not nearly as expensive the property the winner was expecting.
The winner of one housing raffle in Durham received a cash prize of lb7,000 as opposed to a lb43,000 property – better than nothing, but not quite just like winning a house.
A lack of tickets being sold also caused a spot-the-ball competition in Berkshire, which offered a lb3.5m family home as the prize, to be withdrawn altogether. In this instance, nobody won the house or any cash and all money was refunded.
What's the way forward for housing raffles?
With potential rising mortgage costs for first-time buyers and difficulties faced by second-steppers, housing raffles have become increasingly popular.
If you’re tempted to enter one, remember that some information mill running illegal competitions, sometimes pocketing the ticket money and shutting down the competition without giving any kind of prizes.
We'd advise researching your opportunity, checking for additional costs and thoroughly reading the terms and conditions before buying tickets for any housing raffle.
For those thinking about selling their house via a raffle, the Gambling Commission has already expressed worry about members of the public choosing to raffle their properties without having to be aware of the laws surrounding it.
It is recommended that sellers take legal counsel before selecting to sell a home this way.
Your home may be repossessed if you don't keep up repayments on your mortgage.