NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Who says lightning doesn’t strike twice?
Last week, CBS2 told you about Bruce Magistro winning a million-dollar scratch off lottery ticket for the second time. Is it just luck or is there a strategy to winning at scratch-offs?READ MORE: 'Today, I Can Rejoice': New Yorkers Hit The Streets After Jury Finds Derek Chauvin Guilty In George Floyd's Death
CBS2’s Maurice DuBois reveals the secrets to increasing your chances of winning big.
Magistro had a one in 2 billion chance of winning yet another scratch-off jackpot, but last week he beat the odds.
“It’s a coincidence,” Magistro said.
Coincidence, karma, a fluke, or do repeat winners actually know how to beat the scratch-offs at their own game?
Richard Lustig is a seven-time winner. His secret is buying at least 10 tickets in a row from the same roll.
“Every time you keep playing and you keep losing, you keep getting closer,” Lustig said.
Here’s why: let’s say your initial odds of winning are one in three. If you buy a loser, the next ticket on the roll has a greater likelihood of winning.
It’s all about playing the rules of probability, according to this multiple-time prizewinner.
“Buy the whole roll,” he said.
Today, he’s spending about $3,000 on scratch-offs and says he’ll win as much as 60 percent of his money back or more.
“You never know, could be the jackpot,” he said.READ MORE: Activists Celebrate Conviction Of Derek Chauvin In George Floyd's Death, But Say Fight Is Not Over: 'Tomorrow, We Still Have To Dismantle Systemic Oppression'
“They believe that there are more prizes in the newer games,” Vega said.
New or old, always check the lottery commission’s website before you buy to see if the jackpot and other top prizes have already been paid out.
“A lot of people buy the $1 to $2 tickets,” she said.
Seventy-five percent of all scratch-off sales are for $1 and $2, but the cheaper the ticket the worse the odds. For example, your overall chance of winning a Lucky 7’s $1 ticket is about 1 in 4.
But the $20 Lucky 7’s Playbook has about a 1 in 2 chance of winning.
“I’ve won a lot,” another multiple-time winner said.
Her lucky charm? The Yonkers store she buys her tickets from.
“This is a lucky store,” she said.
While it has sold the most winning tickets in the area, the owner said it has less to do with luck and more to do with volume.
“We rotate more tickets, so we get more winners,” the store owner said.
As they say, you got to be in it to win it.MORE NEWS: Police: Gabriel Dewitt Wilson In Custody After Deadly Shooting At West Hempstead Stop & Shop
Here’s another tip: never throw your losing scratch off away. It could still win you money through a second chance drawing the lottery commission often holds.