By now, many people who look in to options for earning money from home will have at least heard of matched betting. It’s something that came to my attention over a year ago. I’d read about it on several blogs and on Money Saving Expert. I’d never tried it until recently, however; this is probably because it seemed like something that needed a fair amount of money to get started and a high level of understanding of how bookie sites work. I didn’t feel that I had either of those assets.
In July, I decided to take the plunge and give it a go. The stories of people making £2,000 a month tax-free was too intriguing to ignore any longer.
I started my first matched betting stint on a Saturday and finished on the following Monday night. Did I make any money? Is it easy to do? Read on for my experience.
What Is Matched Betting?
Put simply, matched betting is where you take advantage of the offers that betting sites give you when you deposit some money with them and place a bet; for example, bet £10 and receive a £20 free bet. You would need to deposit £10 in to your bookie account, place that bet, and then be rewarded with the free bet credited directly to your online account. At the same time as placing the first ‘qualifying’ bet of £10, in which you would back something to win (a horse, a football team etc), you would also visit a site called an exchange to place a lay bet, and bet against the bet you just placed.
So, if you place a £10 bet with a bookie for a horse in the 15:20 at Doncaster to win the race, you would also place a lay bet for that same horse to not win that race. This way, you offset the majority of your loss by betting on both outcomes. There will be a small loss (only pence). But as a result of placing the qualifying bet you now have a £20 free bet credited to your account. You then do the same thing – place a back bet using the free money, and a lay bet using your own money. Using higher odds, this time you make a profit.
This is a simplified version of what happens, and it took me a few hours to get my head around it. However, it is an easy process to follow once you know where to look for the offers and you are guaranteed to make money if you carry out this procedure correctly. Your winnings also happen to be tax-free.
How Do I Start?
If you are a newbie like me, I strongly recommend that you sign up for an account with Profit Accumulator. This site is like a walkthrough site. It literally tells you exactly what to do. It shows you which offers to sign up to with the bookies, and how much you should be making with each offer.
I initially signed up for a free trial to receive a limited number of offers. Then I realised I was going to make some money if I stuck with it. I upgraded to the annual subscription package. This was £150 for the year. This sounds like quite an outlay when you are just starting out. If you compare it to the monthly payment option of £22.99 a month, however, it makes sense to sign up for one year. This is especially true if this is something you plan to stick to. The free trial will only show you two beginner offers. After that you will need a subscription package to carry on with the other offers. The annual package is much cheaper in the long run.
Profit Accumulator also has an extensive forum where you can discuss particular offers with other members. It has a 30 day money back guarantee if you decide you don’t want to carry on with matched betting in that period (providing you haven’t made a profit, which would be very unlikely as it really is easy to make money once you get to grips with it).
Once you’ve signed up, go to the Beginner section, watch the how-to videos and get cracking. Profit Accumulator has very helpful instructions included with each offer. You need to read these carefully and follow them closely when using the built-in oddsmatching software and calculator. Once you get going, it’s not as intimidating as it sounds.
How Much Money Do I Need To Start?
You can start with a very small amount. The first offer on the site requires you to deposit £5 with a bookie to place your initial qualifying bet. You then also need to deposit money in the exchange to place your lay bet, and have some additional money in there for the liability amount. The liability is the amount of money that is needed to cover the lay bet. You will also need enough money in the exchange to cover the second lay bet and its liability, which you will place against the back bet you get from the bookie’s free bet.
In real terms, I deposited £75 overall for my first offer. I made a profit of £12.53 from this first offer.
Ideally, you will lose the free bet and win in the exchange. You will want to build up a pot of money in your exchange. This means you can quickly carry on to do the other offers. It doesn’t matter if you don’t, however, as you can just withdraw the winnings from the bookies immediately if you win your back bet. How quickly you can move on to the other offers depends on how much of a starting pot you have. If you don’t have any extra money to start with, you will just need to wait for your winnings to be returned to you before you can start another offer.
You really can take this at your own pace and slowly build up your pot. The more money you have in your exchange, the more profit you can make as you can work with higher odds.
Can Anything Go Wrong?
There is one way that this can go wrong and you could actually lose money. It is very easy to not pay enough attention while you are doing an offer. You can accidentally back the wrong horse or team, or place a back bet in the exchange rather than the lay bet. It does happen. To avoid this just ensure you take it very easy at the start and read the instructions in Profit Accumulator very carefully.
I also had an issue with the second beginner offer in Profit Accumulator. My other half Sean had also signed up to the site, and had been working through the beginner offers just before me. I signed up for the second bookie site without reading the T&Cs of the free bet offer. I placed my qualifying back bet with the bookie, and then my lay bet in the exchange. As always happens with the qualifying bets, I lost 28p. I waited and waited for the free bet to be deposited in to my account.
In the end had to live chat the bookies to find out what had happened to it. They told me that the free bet offer was only ‘one per household’. As Sean had already received it, I wouldn’t. This meant I couldn’t place the bet that would make me any money so I had to ignore that offer and move on to the next.
I only lost 28p but I did lose out on making around £15 profit on that offer. Always read the T&Cs and check up on partner-friendly bookies as some do allow more than one person per household to receive the free bet offers.
How Much Did I Make In Three Days?
I participated in the first six of the beginner offers in Profit Accumulator. This includes the offer I just mentioned where I didn’t qualify for the free bet. The total amount that I deposited in this time, to both bookie sites and exchanges, was £280. Making £93.61 was fairly easy, quite exciting, and would have been more if not for that ‘one per household’ rule.
I made £93.61 in three days
Remember, this is completely tax-free income, so that’s not bad for a few offers over one weekend.
I haven’t done any matched betting since this. (ETA: I’ve since done A LOT of matched betting in 2017! We had a really good month with it in February. Also, have a read of my April 2017 income report).
It does take a little time when you are learning how to do it, but I plan on carrying on with the offers later in August. I have a nice little pot in my exchange account, and will pick up where I left off soon.
The £150 starting subscription for Profit Accumulator is well worth it. I made over half of that back in three days.
To sum up…
Matched betting is something that I highly recommend if you are looking to make some extra cash quite quickly. It can be done from home and is tax-free. As you build up your pot you can make higher amounts per offer. Profit Accumulator has advanced offers, casino offers, reload offers, bingo offers and more. Your £150 will be earned back so quickly that it is well worth signing up.
Profit Accumulator also have a loyalty scheme. Membership fees drop after one year with them, and I’m looking forward to taking advantage of this when my renewal comes up.
Have you tried matched betting? If not, are you interested to have a go?
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