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I’ve been talking about Matched Betting a lot recently and it’s the side hustle I get asked the most questions about, as we make a considerable income from it. We can easily make hundreds of pounds each month, and depending on the time of year (for example when big sporting events are on and there’s more offers) or how much time we dedicate to it, we can sometimes earn much more.
Hubby is definitely the expert. I understand it and can do it, but I can’t get offers on at the speed that he can just yet – so I’m going to rope him in to do some blog work and write a post sharing some of his wisdom, but for now I thought I’d share the Pros and Cons of Matched Betting (in my opinion).
The biggest one for me – every penny you make is tax free. You do not need to declare it as a second income, you do not get taxed on it and all your profit goes straight into your pocket. You can earn up to £1000 a year tax free from ‘trading income’ (casual second income eg babysitting) but everything after that needs to be declared. Not with matched betting – your earnings will always be tax free. I also wrote about it in this post.
Whenever I post on Instagram about Survey Sites, you can almost guarantee there will be someone quick to inform me that I’m wasting my time earning pennies and that they are many more fruitful side hustles available including Matched Betting – whilst I do believe that there is a place for Surveys and they can be worthwhile, I don’t disagree and Matched Betting is definitely the highest ranking side hustle where monetary compensation for time put in is concerned. You can make hundreds a month for putting in as little as one hour a weeks work with matched betting, not many side hustles can compete with that ‘hourly rate’.
As long as you understand the process and do it right, your money is never at risk. It’ll either end up in your bookies account or in the exchange. Before you start, ensure that you do lots of research and reading. Check you’ve followed all the steps and check your bets before you confirm them. Then check that you have confirmed them! Some bookies have a ‘place bet’ button followed by a ‘confirm bet’ – make sure your bet is actually on!
Whether you have a few hours to spare a week or you have lots of free time you can make money matched betting. Lots of people fit it in around full time work, study and family life. However your day looks you can slot a little bit of Matched Betting in and the amount you get out depends on how much effort you put in. If you need to get some money together to help pay for Christmas, or a holiday etc you can put more hours in than you usually would and reap the benefits. If you don’t really have the time and a particular need for the money, you can take a step back and put less effort in. It’s completely up to you.
Following on from the point above, the earnings potential is unrestricted. Put more effort in, get more money out. As your bank grows, you’ll be able to complete more offers and earn even more money. Full time traders with large banks make thousands a month.
Matched betting can take a while to get your head around and that’s probably the main reason that more people don’t do it is because they don’t fully understand it. Some people just see it as gambling and cannot fathom that it is actually risk free and when you explain the logic behind it, they still don’t get it. That’s fine, it isn’t for everyone – but as I’ve said a thousand times before – if you’re considering starting be 100% sure you know what you’re doing.
Quite often when you consistently take advantage of bookies offers they will start to place restrictions on your account which limit the amount of money you can stake on a bet and in some cases they will close your account completely. This is known as getting ‘gubbed’ (banned from promotions) and is quite common in the matched betting community, account closures are less common but it can happen. Bookies are allowed to do this, they don’t need to offer an explanation. It can be frustrating but you just have to accept it and move on to the next one.
I know I’m labouring the point here but it’s so important. Understand the process, double check the steps, make sure everything is in order. Mistakes can be costly.
As matched betting becomes more popular and more people take advantage of the offers, the bookies are beginning to offer them less and the offers they do have are less profitable. That’s not to say you can’t make money anymore, the offers just aren’t as plentiful as they once were.
Obviously to matched bet you need to deposit money into bookies and exchanges. Your money will be tied up until the bet is complete (eg you may put a bet on today for a football game next saturday) and then when you withdraw it can take a few working days to get the money back in your account.
To make a decent income matched betting, you need a considerable bank. You can start to make money with as little as £50 but it will be a slow process building the money up. The more you have, the more you can make and the quicker you can make it.
You need to develop a system for tracking your bets, your deposits and your profits so that you know how much you’ve made, what free bets you need to place and when, and where your money is. When you have a lot of bets on with a lot of bookies it can be easy to ‘lose’ money. We like to use Odds Monkey’s profit tracker tool and our own spreadsheet tracker.
There are a lot of websites you can use for matched betting and you can shop around but we personally use Oddsmonkey. We’ve used other sites in the past and have found this one to be the best value for money. They are constantly updating their current tools, developing new ones to remain competitive and provide the best customer support we have seen. If you want to join, it costs £17.99 a month (or if you prefer, £150 annually). If you are just starting out and have no bookmaker accounts, you can make this back 10-20 times over before your next charge. At worst, you should at least be making double the cost in your first month. Yes, this is an affiliate link and I will make a commission from you signing up through this link but as always, I would not recommend something I do not believe in.
I started Katie Saves while on Maternity Leave to document our adjustment to living on less. Now back in work - I blog about all things money with a little life organisation thrown in for good measure. Join me!