Does Matched Betting Work?
A Guide to Matched Betting in 2022
This post looks at whether matched betting works, as we consider various topics that also provide a guide to matched betting in 2022.
To understand how matched betting works, we introduce what matched betting is and ask:
- Does matched betting affect credit score and mortgage application?
- How much can you make from matched betting, and see whether it’s viable to earn a living from it.
- We also discuss why matched betting is safe (and not gambling!) and also look at matched betting without free bets.
What is Matched Betting?
Matched betting is an easy and viable way of earning money online.
Despite the word ‘betting’ in the title, with standard matched betting, we do not gamble money but rather carry out simple calculations to exploit and advantage from free bets offered by bookmakers.
Bookies hope to entice new customers to join their sites and sign-up offer deals to achieve this. We then use these sites to place standard bets, which we usually then lay off (bet against) at a betting exchange (such as Smarkets or Betfair).
A back bet is betting with a bookmaker that an outcome will occur. The lay bet is simply a bet on the opposite scenario, i.e., the outcome will not happen.
We find the details we need to complete these offers by using a matched betting service to calculate a matched bet.
OddsMonkey and Profit Accumulator (the most well-known sites, both of which we review here) provide the tools to ensure we have what we need to earn a profit from each of these deals. Also, see our 2022 Review of Profit Squirrel.
When we place bets that cover all potential outcomes, this would typically result in a near-neutral financial outcome.
So how does matched betting actually work? When we repeat the process with free bets, it results in guaranteed fixed profits each time, which, importantly avoid gambling (mug betting) – since the result of the game or race we bet on essentially does not matter.
With matched betting, we carry out qualifying bets that lose us a few pence, in order to receive free bets through which we can achieve consistent profit.
Find details of how to complete your first offer here.
Does matched betting work or are the risks to your credit rating, mortgage application and other legal issues a concern?
Does Matched Betting Affect Credit Score/Rating?
When we look at whether matched betting affects credit score and mortgage applications, we need to look at the nature of our relationship with bookmakers.
The checks that bookmakers carry out when you join them are known as ‘soft checks’ or ‘soft searches’, which involve a credit search on your credit file.
These are anti-money laundering checks as opposed to credit inspections.
Bookmakers may, as part of the process to open an account with them, undertake KYC (“Know Your Customer”) checks, which constitute “a requirement to verify the identity, suitability, and risks involved with maintaining a business relationship“.
Gambling activity (as an onlooker would see it) on your account and the checks a bookmaker undertakes should not affect your credit rating as they are not credit checks (since you are not applying for credit but rather depositing your own money).
As you are not applying for credit, potential lenders will not see these multiple soft searches, nor will they affect your overall credit score/rating*.
*We are obliged to add the disclaimer that all thoroughly researched advice and information in this article is accurate to the best of our knowledge; however, if you are unsure of anything related to your finances, please seek independent financial advice.
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Does Matched Betting Affect Mortgage Applications?
Similarly to whether matched betting affects your credit score, some are concerned with mortgage applications being affected.
Understandably, some are concerned about this. It is undoubtedly the case that if you are currently considering applying for a mortgage, you need to consider whether you should be matched betting. Let’s explore this further.
Despite matched betting not being gambling, a large number of deposits and withdrawals from bookmakers on a bank statement might not show your bank account/finances in the best light/adverse inferences could be drawn.
When you apply for a mortgage, every lender/broker will have different rules; however, typically, they will, of course, assess your financial position. These assessments will take into account your current income and outgoings.
To do this, they need to look through your bank records and are likely to examine at least 3-6 months worth of statements.
We can not advise for sure how disfavourably frequent transactions with a bookmaker may be viewed in a mortgage application (our website is purely advice, please seek financial advice if you need further information).
There is the possibility that matched betting transactions on your statement won’t be viewed positively. With something as important as a mortgage application, it pays not to take any risks.
We can point out some key things to consider if you are matched betting (or thinking of starting) and are also looking to apply for a mortgage soon.
Options to consider include:
- The best option may be to ensure you stop matched betting in the lead up to a mortgage application. A three-six month break could ensure that there are no adverse effects with a mortgage application. After approval, you can start matched betting again and begin depositing/withdrawing as needed.
- You may choose to reduce the impact of the activity on their bank account statements by using an eWallet for matched betting (such as Skrill or Neteller). Trying in this way to minimise the use of your bank account may help. Still, remember that most bookmakers require a debit card for the initial welcome offer sign up.
- A separate bank account for matched betting is also an option for matched betting. There are advantages to this in terms of tracking your activity and profit. It may or may not be helpful for a mortgage application if this account is not the account for your normal incoming and outgoings.
Does matched betting work to the extent that it’s still worth it in 2022?
Below we look at:
- Is matched betting still worth it in 2022?
- How much can you make from matched betting?
- Can you make a living from matched betting?
Is Matched Betting Still Worth it in 2022?
Matched betting is still worth it in 2022. There is no end in sight for matched betting.
The competition bookmakers face from rival companies results in high perceived value for the promotions they run to entice new customers, so there is no end to the competitive rewards they offer. With no end to free bets, there should be no end to matched betting!
Given it is still going strong, there is no reason why in 2022 and beyond, it’s not worth getting involved in. There is a great deal of profit to be had and no natural barriers to entry (even with only a tiny bankroll to start, you can build this up over time!).
How Much Can You Make from Matched Betting?
How much you can make from matched betting very much depends upon your level of commitment and the hours you put in. There is no catch, but it takes time to earn a decent profit, though it is still one of the best ways to make money online as you can earn hundreds of pounds with only a few hours a week.
If you cannot dedicate more than half an hour a day, then it is unlikely you will be able to earn any more than £500 per month spend ten minutes per day*.
*The Profit Squirrel matched betting service is now even offering a ‘VIP Lifetime service’ where essentially they do the matched betting for you and you don’t need as much time!*
Continuing profit after welcome offers will fluctuate as you profit from advanced strategies such as the 2 up early payout and extra places offers. Similarly, Casino offers too are EV+ but do not have guaranteed instant profit. Reload offers also provide additional profit, and multi-accounting is why you will hear about people earning thousands of pounds consistently.
To make a consistent and steady profit, you also require a high bankroll. The higher your bankroll (also known as your ‘bank’), the more offers you can run simultaneously. A high bankroll is required to cover the multiple liabilities you need to cover at the exchange. The more offers you do, the higher the income, though we still recommend you start slow to avoid matched betting going wrong.
To make a good profit with matched betting, you must sign up for multiple bookmaker accounts, not only for sign-up offers but also so you can continue earning a high profit (great profit after welcome offers), including with your advanced strategies with Paddy Power and bet365.
Can You Make a Living from Matched Betting?
As we discussed elsewhere, you can earn a great deal from matched betting. But is it a viable living in 2022?
Dependent upon your circumstances, the amount of money you need to earn to constitute a living is subjective. It is perfectly possible (especially with multi-accounting) to make £1,000-2,000/month.
There is every chance this is not enough for you to live on where you live, but it’s nevertheless a significant side income.
It certainly would be a huge risk to give up your day job and start solely focusing on matched betting. It’s risky because the basis for continued profit is not entirely future-proofed since your bookmaker accounts can be closed (get ‘gubbed’) or otherwise restricted.
There are always work around and multiple ways to earn from matched betting (including advanced strategies) and arbitrage. Still, this may all feel too risky when it comes to making a living, and matched betting may remain much more appealing as a side income in the evenings and at the weekends.
Even if you do not make a living from matched betting, the profit can be life-changing and significant.
Consistent profit even at the £500-£750 per month mark constitutes £6-9k per annum tax-free! A new car or money to help build a house deposit can be a very welcome reward for most people.
Remember that although extra income to help with a deposit can be helpful, your income from matched betting cannot count/be declared as income for the purposes of getting a mortgage.
Does matched betting actually work without the standard approach of using free bets?
We look at:
- Matched betting without free bets
- Is matched betting safe, legal?
- Why is matched betting it not gambling?
Matched Betting Without Free Bets?
Does matched betting actually work without free bets?
It’s possible to earn money matched betting without free bets by carrying out arb betting. Still, you must proceed with a lot of caution, and it is not advised for beginners and may not be appropriate to consider even for the experienced matched bettor.
To complete an arb, you find back bets with the bookmakers and lay bets at the exchange, in the usual way, but identifying those with a match rating over 100%, thus guaranteeing you an instant profit (entirely irrespective of the result) once you lay the bet (lower odds at the exchange).
To carry out an arb bet, you do not need to rely upon free bets of any kind. The problem for a regular matched bettor is that you take a considerable amount of value from a bookmaker, so it is common for a ban to follow after placing these bets.
One option is to only arb with gubbed accounts wherever possible. You can also do dutching on bad bookmaker accounts, which is a viable option for more experienced matched bettors.
Price boosts are another excellent way to make money and it’s worth adding these to your matched betting strategy.
Is Matched Betting Safe and Legal and Why is it Not Gambling?
Matched betting is entirely legal in the UK and safe to carry out. It is advisable to start slow and check all your calculations (see our Top 10 Matched Betting Tips), and then you can ensure matched betting does not go wrong.
The concept of matched betting may seem “too good to be true”, but it’s not. It’s 100% legal in the UK and safe if done correctly. To ensure you don’t go wrong, check out our post here.
Unless you calculate wrong or make a similar error, you should not lose any money while matched betting.
One only thing to look out for that can cause an issue is a last-minute, drastic change in the odds. A difference like this is rare, but if it happens and you lose money, you will be able to make that loss back in no time at all.
Gambling involves requiring a set result to occur, and if it does not, you lose money, and it is not like this with matched betting. Any qualifying losses get quickly swallowed up from the profit we earn from the free bets we acquire.
Matched betting not only works, but it works well and provides a guaranteed regular profit when done correctly. Unlike gambling, with standard matched betting, the result of the match or race does not matter as we cover all outcomes.