How to enter ‘Win a House’ competitions without buying a ticket

‘Win a house’ competitions have become more common in the UK over the last few years – and I regularly receive emails asking me to promote a new one on SuperLucky!

But I’m not a fan of lottery style promotions, so rather than telling you how fantastic it would be if you bought a £10 ticket and won a house, I’m sharing the details of how you can enter several of these ‘Win a House’ competitions for FREE* rather than buy a ticket…

(*well, the cost of a stamp…)

How to enter Win a House competitions without buying a ticket

How do ‘Win a House’ promotions work?

The seller is struggling to sell their property, and they believe that giving it away in an online raffle is a great way to do it, as they’ll get lots of publicity and people will be excited that they could possibly win a house – or church, or castle! – for a few quid. Sometimes the promoter might advertise that they’ll give a donation to charity when they reach their target.

But if a promoter charges people to enter a prize draw (like Lotto), that’s a lottery – and the Gambling Commission has strict rules about running lotteries.

To ensure a ‘Win a House’ competition isn’t an illegal lottery, the promoter needs to add an element of skill – usually a question to answer or a puzzle to complete. Everyone who answers correctly then goes into a prize draw.

Only a few of these home raffles have been successful in reaching their target number of ticket sales –  lucky Marie Segar became the owner of a country manor in 2017 and more recently, in 2020 Jemma Nicklin won a £545,000 farmhouse and Alison Bellamy won a £650,000 farmhouse in Shropshire!

Usually, a percentage of the cash raised from tickets sold is given away – minus the promoter’s administration fees, of course. The amount will depend on what the promoter states in the T&Cs (for example, ‘A cash draw will take place for 75% of the value of tickets sold after promotion costs’) – in some cases, a charity donation is guaranteed before the remaining prize fund is given to a winner. The organisers of ‘Win a Megahome’ were criticised when they didn’t sell enough tickets – they did sell £750,000 worth, but only awarded a cash prize of £110,000, claiming that the promotion incurred ‘very high costs’ for them.

The ‘WinAbode’ house raffle didn’t generate enough ticket sales – but they did give away a £102,141.10 prize to the winner!

Don’t forget that winning a property will also bring financial responsibilities – make sure you read the terms and conditions to check what’s included, and what’s not!

Home Raffles with FREE postal entry routes

Many ‘Win a House’ competitions offer a free postal entry route, but the details might not be immediately obvious. Rather than enter easily online, you’ll need to do a bit of writing and buy a stamp. But a stamp is still cheaper than a £5 ticket, so why not give it a go?

Here are details of the postal entry routes for some of the current ‘win a house’ promotions. You can usually only send one postal entry per competition, but check the rules first. Good luck!

www.omaze.co.uk – London townhouse worth £3million

Omaze is a super popular American website, which started off featuring once-in-a-lifetime celebrity prize draws which raised funds for charity. They’ve now expanded and give away cars and houses – always with a percentage going to charity. All their draws can be entered for free. For particular million pound house draw on the UK Omaze website, 80% of the money raised will go to the British Heart Foundation.

  • Cost: £10 for 15 entries, £25 for 40 entries, £50 for 85 entries, or £150 for 320 entries
  • Free entry route: send a piece of paper or postcard with a 1st or 2nd class stamp to: Omaze Million Pound House Draw – London, Omaze Scrutineers, Civica Election Services, 33 Clarendon Road, London N8 0NW. Include your name, address, date of birth, telephone number, and email address. Postal entries are unlimited, but must be sent separately.
  • As well as the grand prize draw – where the house will be awarded, as well as 2,001 gift card prizes, there are also early bird prize draws to win £10k of tech, Jaguar F-Type Coupe and a VW California Ocean – AND weekly prize draws for £1000 cash!
  • Ends 26 March 2021.

www.dreamhomeprizedraw.com – Win ‘Painter’s Keep’ in West Sussex

  • £2 a ticket
  • Question to answer: Which famous motor racing circuit is closest to Kingston Gorse? – I suggest Goodwood
  • Free entry route: send a 1st class postcard to Dream Home Prize Draw, Painter’s Keep, Seaview Avenue, Kingston Gorse, Nr East Preston BN16 1RZ. Include your name, telephone number, email address, postal address, date of birth, and answer to the question.
  • End date has been extended to 30 November 2020.

www.winmydreambrightonhome.co.uk – Win a Brighton apartment

  • £2 a ticket
  • Question to answer: What is the Rockinghorse charity? I suggest The fundraising arm of The Royal Alexandra Children’s Hospital Brighton
  • Free entry route: enter by post to Fiona Koderisch, Flat 11 Rochester Mansions, Hove BN3 2HA. Include an email address, telephone number, and answer to the question.
  • Ends 11 December 2020.

www.winyourdream.com – Win a Market Bosworth eco house worth £1.2m

  • £2 a ticket
  • Question to answer: In which year was the Battle of Bosworth? – I suggest 1485
  • Free entry route: send a 1st class postcard or paper inside an envelope to: Win Your Dream Competitions Ltd (Hideaway), Furness Gate, Furness Business Park, Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, LA14 2PE. Include your full name, address, telephone number and email address, as well as the answer to the question.
  • End date has been extended to 18 December 2020

www.winadreamproperty.co.uk – Win 2 homes in a converted Gwynedd chapel worth £685k

  • £3 a ticket (or 4 for £10)
  • Question to answer: The Talyllyn railway runs from Abergynolwyn to the coast at Tywyn. How many steam locomotives does the railway have? – I suggest B. 6
  • Free entry route: send a 1st class postcard (not in an envelope) to Win A Dream Property, Capel Jerusalem, Llanegryn Street, Abergynolwyn, Gwynedd, LL36 9YE. Include the answer to the question, plus your name, address, date of birth, email address and telephone number, plus confirmation that the entrant has read and accepted the T&Cs.
  • Ends 14 February 2020

www.winmydreamhome.com – Win a London flat worth over £500k

  • £5 a ticket
  • Question to answer is currently: What is H2O the chemical symbol of ? – I suggest WATER
  • Free entry route: send a postcard to Win My Dream Home, Kinetic Business Centre, Theobald Street, Elstree WD6 4PJ. Include your name, telephone/mobile number and email address – plus the answer.
  • Ends 31 December 2020

www.drawahouse.com – Aidrie house worth £570,000

  • £2.50 a ticket (plus £1 booking fee)
  • Question to answer is Which year was Airdrie’s observatory first established? – I suggest 1896
  • Free entry route: send a sealed envelope with a 1st class stamp to: Draw A House, 62 Alexander Street, Airdrie, North Lanarkshire ML6 0BD. Inside you must include an unsealed envelope with a first class stamp addressed to yourself, PLUS inside that envelope you should include your phone number, email address and answer on a piece of paper (note that the requirement for this extra stamped envelope has been added to the T&Cs recently)
  • Ends 20 December 2020 (extended from March due to Covid-19)

Have you been tempted to enter one of these competitions, or do you think they’re a crazy idea? Let me know in the comments!

49 Responses

  1. Georgina Davies says:

    I entered two recently! The ‘free ‘ way and the ticket route. One being the Market Bosworth House. From reading your blog, now know I’m still in with a chance as the date for entering has been extended; I had thought all was lost and my prayers had fallen on deaf ears. On the verge of homelessness, I might still be saved by angels!

  2. Stephen says:

    I hope the postcard free entry routes are taken seriously and added to the draw for these competitions. I’m not convinced though, as I’ve never heard of a free entry winning a win a house competition. Call me sceptical, but I work off the facts…..

  3. r franklin says:

    did a win a home draw once and after competition closed they said as per terms ..not enough tickets sold and after taking out finical costs or promotion they were returning entry fees. Lost about 90% of cost of entering. I suspect many draws end this way! would advise not to enter unless prepared to lose all if not most of entry fee.

  4. Derek Grace says:

    Id love a house and would praise anyone who till the end of time who let me win

  5. ian brewer says:

    nice to be able to enter a comp without paying /but surely can I really have a chance of winning /or is the Post Office the only winner

  6. Ian says:

    This is so cool winning a house

  7. Liahos says:

    I have entered four of these house raffle one was a waste of time and £40 as they said there draw would take place sept but the winner was announced on 19th July this year. Hope I have better luck with the other comps.

  8. Pip says:

    I dont feel 100 per cent comfortable about adding my date of birth on entry forms as I think it may lead to identify theft/ cloning in the wrong hands if I write “i am over 18 will my entry be accepted?

    • Di says:

      It’s a good question – but I’m afraid I don’t think writing that would be sufficient. With such valuable prizes on offer, these promoters need to follow their own T&Cs precisely and I have a feeling they would discard any entries which didn’t follow the rules to the letter! If you’re not keen on sending a postcard with your details visible, for most of these draws it’s fine to send them on a piece of paper sealed inside an envelope instead.

  9. Anisa. Sema says:

    I’m in South Africa can I enter omaze competitions

  10. Sangeeta Francis says:

    Thank you so much Di, for all your guide, support and all help. Do appreciate all guidance from you.
    With lots of hope and happiness I have entered into postal entry for draw.

  11. Spencer P says:

    Sending personal details like my D.O.B by postcard would worry me however, you could save a fortune in entry costs by doing this

  12. Mark says:

    With the Omaze site in America….can we still enter from the UK ( or do we have to enter the Draws on the UK Omaze site only). Also, when it says send a blank piece of paper to the UK draw…..do they mean in addition to paper which has our contact details on? Thank you

  13. Khuthala says:

    Thank you so much for the information

  14. H says:

    Hi Di, re Cwellyn dream they change the question every so often, and intend to continue this. Answers can be easily found via any search engine. All the best

  15. Louise says:

    Do you think they really take a sealed down envelope (free) entry and put it into the draw??
    I would have thought that you would not have any chance because you have not paid for a ticket?
    BTW I still do them!! not sure if anyone has won this way?!

    • Di says:

      Yes, the promoter MUST include those entries – with such high profile competitions they would be in a lot of trouble if they weren’t doing it properly! They often make the free entry details tricky to find on their sites, in the hope that people will buy tickets rather than sifting through the T&Cs. I do know of people who’ve won by the free entry routes jn other pay-to-enter comps on radio and raffle websites (but I’ve not heard of a free entry winning a house competition yet!)

  16. Diane Duggan says:

    Where are the postcard entry details for the Elatus Developments Liverpool flat? I can’t find them anywhere on their website.

  17. Alexandra Best says:

    It would be nice to win a house or cash in chelmsford as I never win anything and it would be a miracle

  18. Garry Butcher says:

    Dancers Hill House competition closes on 25/12/19

  19. anne mashhadi says:

    I am a keen comper so have started entering these draws using the (hard to find) free entry route. Its worth the extra time as the houses are worth a lot more than most competition prizes. I would be happy to buy a ticket for a couple of pounds but personally wouldnt be prepared to pay a lot more such as £50.

    Yes there are costs e.g. upkeep of the property but if I am lucky enough to win a house “worth” say 5 million then I would be happy to sell it off for a lot less, use it as a holiday home or rent it out etc.

    No wins as yet but its early days. I treat this just like any other competition. Its a bit of fun and I may be lucky……

  20. Hi Di, great to see your support for the House Competitions, after several years of investigating this concept with HMRC and the Gambling Commission I have opened this up as a business, and selling other peoples homes for them. I only deal with modest homes, no castles, churches or mansions. The first property is in Emersons Green , Bristol. I do offer a FREE entry via Royal Mail however a ticket is just £2 and once you’ve bought a ticket you can register to receive a personal link which can be shared on all social media sites and via email, when someone clicks on it they are tracked back to you and if they buy a ticket then you get a FREE ticket, so there are 2 routes for FREE tickets. Please take a look and once again thanks for supporting this fantastic concept, Best regards Andrew http://www.2poundhome.com

  21. Vuyelwa says:

    Waaaw I Would Like To Win A House Please

  22. Ben Rowton says:

    Hi Di,

    Many thanks for the interesting article and link to our competition. The HousePrizeCompetition is unfortunately one of those harder ones which is not a lottery and so doesn’t require us to allow free postal entries. Having free entries would of course negate the entire point of the competition which is designed to allow the owners to ‘sell’ their home via an alternative route.

    Our prize is not only the home fully paid for, but also £50k to ensure you can run it for a few years without any worries at all.

    I note that not many of these competitions make the required value, however we are well on the way to being successful following intense media coverage (ITV news featured us and it crashed the website!). We are also frequently offering promotional free weekend breaks on social media, so be sure to follow us for information.

  23. Carolyn Collins says:

    Hi Di

    Thanks for reply.

    Do you know if they have announced the winners of the London house in Hampton Hill,?
    The website has not been updated for a week. I have emailed them but no response.

    Does any of your subscribers know what has happened?

    Thanks.

  24. Hi all, if you are interested in winning a Luxury Algarve Villa, check out http://www.winyourdreamproperty.com – entries are £5, but if you buy 4 entries you get a 5th free! Good Luck!

  25. Carolyn Collins says:

    Hi Di

    I entered the London House Raffle and checked website last night.
    No house to win as not enough paid entries. Cash draws instead.
    Does this happen a lot with house raffles?

  26. Thank you so much for all this information – I’ve entered three of the competitions, wish me luck. 🙂

  27. Lisa says:

    Thanks for putting all the info together. I am very tempted to enter but if you won what would your options be? Could you sell, rent it or would you have to move?

  28. Chrissie says:

    Thank you. For the London one it says ‘please send your name, email, telephone number and address’ , do you think they want the answers to the questions also?

    • Di says:

      It’s not mentioned – but it won’t hurt to add that extra information on your entry!

    • Nicola says:

      Whatcha out for the mansion tax babe god even some 2bedrooms in London are classes as mansion with a massive yearly bill if it’s over 2,mill over 28000 a year

  29. mica says:

    Thank you for sharing this information. Should you send a A4 self addressed envelope or would a small envelope be ok?

    • Di says:

      I’m not entirely sure what it will be used for Mica! I would probably include an A5 envelope with a second class stamp on!

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