To Lay or Not to Lay when Matched Betting? - No Lay Acca Guide
Increasing profits by not laying bets sounds crazy, doesn't it! However mine defiantly increased when I stopped. I also greatly increased my available time.
(I will be mostly relating this article to football Accas although it can apply to other events as well)
So why do we lay bets?
Firstly if it can greatly increase our profits, why do we recommend newbies to lay there bets. The main reason Laying is recommended is that it can guarantee a profit. Take a typical Lock in Acca. Here below we have a typical example:
Now for this example we are guaranteed to make a minimum of £3.66 and a maximum of £4.05, no matter what the result is. This therefore seems like a really sensible thing to do? Which it is, for a beginner. The reason we say for a beginner only, also someone with a small bank, is because laying every single match is time consuming. There is also the possibility of the lay odds changing which could increase or decrease your profit. Which brings us onto:
Why would you not Lay your Bets?
Well here is the same bet on a No Lay Acca:
First thing to note is the Expected Value is higher than the maximum winnable on a Lock-in Acca. £4.86 vs £4.06. The reason for this is that when you Lock in an Acca you have to lay the bet at the exchange, this means you will have to pay the exchange fee, normally between 2-5%.
There is also the incredible time saving. As you only need to place the bet and not lay the first bet, then check back for the result, re-input the new odds into the calculator, lay the next bet, etc. This creates two benefits, firstly having more time to place more bets and do more offers and secondly you do not need to keep as much money tied up in your exchange again allowing you to attempt more offers.
So Why Doesn't Everyone do No Lay?
This where your math comes in. There is a 17.06% chance of that bet coming in. Which means for every 6 bets you place, you should win one of them. Therefore 6 bets at an average profit of £5, would equal £30 profit from 6 bets. If only life worked like that though. You may place 6 bets and win everyone. You are more likely to place 6 bets and win none of them though. If you are just starting out six £20 bets that lose will see your bank drop £120. Which is demoralising to say the least. It can also effect your ability to place more bets in the future.
When should you start No-Laying Accas?
Everyone is going to have slightly different opinions on this. Personally I started as soon as I had £1,000 bank. Reading varying opinions some seem to think this is dangerous. However I disagree. There is a risk that variance will hit really hard and you will lose a lot. If this happens though you can go back to Laying all of your bets so that you do not lose all of your bank.
Therefore if you do not have the worry that you will lose everything, then the extra profit and time saving is well worth the small risk that variance will hit. To give you a better idea, here are some random number generator results using the odds from the no lay bet above.
So what can we take from this. Well firstly worse case scenario we never go below £300. This may be in the first 30 bets that we do which drops to -£300, that could be scary. However by the end we are looking at only a small chance we are below, he most being less than -£200.
If we were really lucky, we could find ourselves at £1200. This is a big upswing though, if this was the case I would expect your next 100 bets bring you back down closer to the estimated value.
Finally the majority of our lines end up a round the estimated value, some above and some below.
No Lay Acca results for 1000 Bets
Now let's look at our first 1000 bets, using the same odds as before:
This is where we can really start to see the Estimated Value showing through. Firstly 205 bets is the last point where we are still down. Again this is a round £200 down. So even with a bank of £1000 you will have only lost a maximum of £200. Much better than tying your money up Laying bets.
With an estimated value of £4,86 we would expect to see roughly £4860 if EV always correct. However it is never going to be exact although it does look close. The range is £3000 at the bottom end with £8000 at the top. The majority being much closer to £4860. If this was spread out to 10,000 bets I would imagine it would be even closer to the Estimated Value of £48,600.
Is No Laying relying on Luck?
Short answer; No! Long answer; there is some luck involved. However the bookies make their profit from using math and odds in the same way we do when "no laying". If the math wasn't there, bookies would never be in profit. I understand bookies do this on a much bigger scale however the principle is the same.
Tips to maximise your chance to make this profitable:
- Do not use the same teams in your Acca's each day. If one team loses you will lose all of the Acca's with that team in. This can make it harder to find good matches but it will stop such big up and down swings.
- Use the Oddsmonkey Acca Builder - No Lay. This doesn't just check the bookmaker odds to find a good match it also checks the exchange odds which means your matches will be closer to the true odds
- Do not bet on unknown lower league teams. This is general advice to keep your accounts healthy.
- Create a plan of how much EV you would like each day. £10 is where I would start. Then ensure you place enough bets to hit this.
- Make sure your bets finish on different days so you qualify for the Acca insurance.
- Do not chase losses. If you go through a losing streak continue to stick to your plan.
- Only place bets which have a positive EV. Dont let your favourite team cloud your judgement.
- Read the rules from each bookmaker. Some do change often, so make sure you double check.
- Check the percentage odds of winning. Some positive EV Accas may have really big win included which would make them positive EV however the winnings may be really high which means you would need a huge bank to win. Example below:
Personally I would not place this. Although it is positive EV the odds of winning are really low and you would need a huge bank to start seeing these results. Running this bet through the same calculator as before, leads to these results:
Worse case scenario this time you are minus £5000 after your first 100 bets. With the majority of the odds putting you between £0 and -£5000. Now for the first 1000 bets:
Worse case scenario over 1000 bets; minus £20,000+. With a lot of different minus results between. Who even cares with what the best case may be if the worse case is minus £20,000.
At what odds should I do No Lay Accas then?
As a guide I'd recommend over 15%. Alternatively the winnings being no more than 10% of your bank. You will start getting a feel for these yourself however these basic rules are a good start for any one who is just beginning to start placing No Lays.
The greater the odds of winning are the more likely you are to be in profit quicker. At 20% then you are looking at 1 in 5 of your bets to be a winner. At 15% you are looking at 1 in 6.67 of your bets being winners. You will still suffer variance however the chance is lower and you will be much more likely to follow the positive EV at the start.
Ultimately this is just a guide, use some common sense and you won't go far wrong. When you agree with all the following, then start placing No Lay Accas:
- You want more profit
- You want to save time
- You understand there will be upswings and downswings
- You have a big enough bank to ride the variance
- You understand how the math works