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Selling Home Through A Lottery

Ask the Real Estate Lawyer: Real Estate Law Q&A

REM #LAW 742

By Ilyce R. Glink and Samuel J. Tamkin

Summary: A ThinkGlink reader would like to sell his home through a private lottery. Ilyce and Sam explain where he needs to go to find out the legalities of such a transaction.

Q: I would like to sell my home via a private lottery in New York State. How do I go about doing this and is it legal?
(article continues below useful links)

A: In some states, lotteries of your type are legal, but may be regulated. If you plan to have people participate in your lottery that are from states other than your own, you may have to comply with the lottery rules in each of those states.

Some states may require you to submit your advertising materials and other information relating to your lottery for approval by the appropriate governmental agency.

Other states will specifically restrict any game of chance in which you have to pay to participate. Some of these games of chance are permitted for charitable purposes, but when it comes time to have a lottery, raffle or other game of chance in which a person has to pay to play, it may be prohibited or highly regulated.

For more information on your specific state, you should contact the gaming commission board in the state in which you are located.

You can also look up the laws of New York under After reviewing the legislation, we’re betting that you’ll find that a lottery of the type you are contemplating is considered gambling and is probably illegal.


Samuel J. Tamkin is a Chicago-based real estate attorney. Ilyce R. Glink’s latest book is 50 Simple Steps You Can Take To Sell Your Home Faster and For More Money In Any Market. If you have questions for them, write: Real Estate Matters Syndicate, PO Box 366, Glencoe, IL 60022 or contact them through Ilyce’s website




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