There’s been quite a buzz about matched betting as a risk-free way to make money so it’s worth taking a look at how much can be made and how long this ‘goose’ can keep laying golden eggs.
Matched betting websites typically promote earnings potential between and £500 and £1500 per month but does it really work and can you rely on making a regular income from betting offers?
Bona fides of matched betting
As far back as 2010, Guardian and Telegraph journalists were trialling the system and agreed it works. In addition, they also confirmed that the unique matched betting method is not gambling.
Martin Lewis is a stickler when it comes to financial guidance and he has allowed a section of his site’s forum to be dedicated to matched betting.
A brief outline of how matched betting works
This system uses betting exchanges to back against your own bets to guarantee a return no matter what the result. Sites such as matchedbets.com use odds matching software to find closely matched prices on the bookmaker websites and exchanges, and using matched betting calculators, you end in the same position whatever the outcome.
This strategy can be used to place bets on betting offers and qualify for a free bet. A similar technique with stakes adjusted by the calculator will allow you to convert most of the free bet value into cash.
In practise, matched bettors allow around 5% of the qualifying bet stake as the cost of obtaining a free bet and look to retain around 80% the free bet value on average.
Earnings potential from matched betting
There are more than 60 UK licensed bookmakers giving away free bets for opening an account on their websites and sign up offers alone should be worth between £500 and £1000.
Loyalty promotions and other offers aimed at existing customers hold the key to making a regular income from matched betting. £500 per month profits are very achievable and it won’t always require a daily matched betting routine. However, some offers require you to be available at specific times. For instance, you’ll need to be around for the event to take part in an in-play promotion.
Earning over £1000 per month will require a lot of dedication and willingness to do every offer available. This will probably be fine for someone between jobs but likely won’t fit into a busy family/work lifestyle.
Is there a future in matched betting?
It needs to be understood that there is a loser in this betting system and that is the bookmaker. The biggest challenge facing matched bettors at the moment is being allowed to take part in promotions. Bookmakers will, and do, restrict some customers from participating in promotions and this can limit the earnings potential from matched betting.
From August 2017 bookmakers will be required to pay tax on free bets, what this means for matched betting nobody knows but a change seems inevitable. The matched betting community has shown it can eke out a profit from almost any type of betting offer from price boosts to enhanced place terms and will continue to develop strategies to gain an edge over bookmakers.