How Much To Bet On Sports

If you want to know how to make money sports betting, you’re probably already a sports fan.

I have bad news for you – most sports fans lose money sports betting.

That’s because they have biases and prejudices toward and against teams that wouldn’t exist if they weren’t fans.

Enter the amount of money you wish to bet. Our calculator will take care of the rest. You’ll see how much money you’ll win, and the total payout you’d receive. We set the bet amount to $100, but you can enter any amount you want as long as your bankroll can handle it. The amount that one should bet on sports depends entirely on your bankroll. Again, when choosing your deposit amount, you should not deposit more than you can afford to lose. Pick a starting amount that if you lost, you could shrug it off and not have it affect your day-to-day life. For a Parlay bet to win, all outcomes within the Parlay must be selected correctly. The odds for each pick are multiplied by one another to determine the odds for the Parlay. For example, New England at -150 odds, parlayed with New York at +200 odds, would result in +400 odds.

In other words, it’s hard to make money sports betting unless you’re objective about the teams’ odds.

But if you’re a fan who can set aside these notions, you can probably win money sports betting.

This post introduces some ideas you need familiarize yourself with to pull off this feat:

You Must Understand Some Math to Make Money Sports Betting

To break even as a sports bettor, you need to win 52.4% of your bets.

To win money as a sports bettor, you need to win MORE than 52.4% of your bets.

Some people might be confused by that, thinking that if they win 50% of their bets, they should break even.

And anything above a 50% win ratio should result in profits, right?


While it’s true that most bets have a 50% probability of winning based on the point spread, the bookmakers make you wager $110 to win $100. (You’ll sometimes run into books which want you to risk $120 to win $100, and you’ll also find some that want you to risk $105 to win $100.)

If you’re losing half the time, but you’re losing more money than you’re winning the other half of the time, you’re going to lose money in the long run.

Imagine if you place 2 bets, winning one and losing the other.

You win $100 on the bet you won, but you lose $110 on the bet you lose, which leads to a net loss of $10.

And that’s just the beginning of the math you need to understand to make money sports betting.

More about Sports Betting Math

Let’s look at a more detailed example, just to give you a clearer idea of what I’m talking about when I say you need to understand the math behind sports betting.

You go to your favorite bookmaker’s website, or visit the book at your favorite online casino, and you see the following posted:

Buffalo Bills -3
New Orleans Saints +3

The team with the – sign next to it is the favorite. To determine the winner of that bet, you subtract 3 from their score before comparing it with the other team’s score.

The team with the + sign next to it is the dog. You get to add 3 to the team’s final score for determining which team wins.

In either case, when it’s not listed, you’re expected to wager $110 to win $100.

Those point spreads are also called the lines.

The book creates the line so that they don’t get an overwhelming loss when the favorite beats the dog. If there weren’t a line, everyone would bet the favorite and win most of the time.

The point spread creates a situation where you (theoretically) have a 50% probability of winning.

The lines are set by the handicappers working for the bookmaker. And for the most part, they’re good at their job.

The lines aren’t always right, though, and when they’re wrong, you can profit.

How to Use Moving Lines to Track Sharp Action

A “sharp” is an educated, winning sports bettor. Sharps generally bet large enough amounts of money that bookmakers will adjust the point spreads (“lines”) to stimulate action on the other side. If you watch how the lines move, you can track the sharp action and make betting decisions based on what the sharps are doing.

One thing to look for is called “reverse line movement.” That’s just a fancy way of describing when the line moves away from the side with more money bet on it – the popular side.

That’s easy enough to do – find a line that moves from +7 to +6, for example, then look at how many people are betting that side of the match.

Now you know which side the book is trying to stimulate action for.

Combine this with shopping lines from one bookmaker to another, and you have a powerful tool for placing bets with a positive expectation.

Be a Contrarian

You can find plenty of websites that estimate what percentage of the action is on one side or the other of a sporting event. For example, you might find a football game where 70% of the public is betting on one side, and 30% of the public is betting on the other side.

If you bet with the 30% rather than with the 70%, you’re being a contrarian – you’re betting the other side of the event from what most people are.

The good news is that being a contrarian usually means betting the underdog. People generally prefer to bet on favorites than underdogs.

I like to root on underdogs, but as it turns out, betting on an underdog to cover results in a higher percentage of bets won than betting on the favorite.

It won’t result in a high enough percentage to make you profitable in the long run, though – you’ll still need to pick and choose.

But betting underdogs is a great starting point for a winning sports betting strategy.

Manage Your Bankroll Appropriately

You might have heard the expression “on any given Sunday.” This refers to the possibility of an upset in pro football – on any given Sunday, any team can win, regardless of what people might think.

This means that no matter how confident you are in your bets you still might lose.

And, in the short run, you might lose a higher percentage of bets than you expect.

What does this mean in terms of managing your bankroll?

It means that you shouldn’t have too much of your bankroll in action on any given bet.

For example, suppose you’ve found a bet that you’re confident has a 65% probability of being a winning bet. That’s a stellar percentage; if you won 65% of your bets in the long run, you’d be breathing rarefied air. You’d be the Warren Buffett of sports betting, in fact.

But if you have a bankroll of $10,000 and wager all of it on that one match, you have a 35% probability of losing your entire bankroll.

This means starting over and building a new bankroll, which takes time.

And when it comes to winning at sports betting, time is money.

How Much To Bet On Sports

You’ll see varying estimates of how much of your bankroll you should risk on any single bet.

Your tolerance for risk should determine your bet sizing, but 1% to 5% of your bankroll is a good guideline to follow.

If you have a low tolerance for risk, bet 1% of your bankroll on each bet. With a $10,000 bankroll, this means limiting the size of an individual bet to $100.

If your tolerance for risk is high, bet up to 5% of your bankroll on each bet. With that $10,000 bankroll, you’d limit the size of your bets to $500.

You can adjust those bet sizes based on your confidence level in your picks.

If you’re sure about a bet, you might wager $200 or $300 (2% or 3%) on it even if you’re risk averse.

Limiting the size of your bets prevents a series of upsets or a run of bad luck from running you out of the hobby.

Don’t Buy Picks

Here’s the problem with buying sports picks:

The people selling these picks are usually no better at picking winners than you are.

Companies that sell sports betting picks are called tout services. They have an interesting history.

I have a friend who worked for a tout service in Las Vegas back when they still used call centers and 900 numbers to sell their picks. He explained to me one of their strategies with their customers, which I’ll share with you below:

In a room full of touts over the phone, half the room would sell picks on one side of a game.

The other half would sell picks on the other side of the game.

This would result in half their customers winning each week, while half their customers would lose.

If any of the losers called to complain – and they often did – they’d give them a free pick on the Monday night football game.

And they’d follow the same strategy – give half the losers one side while giving the other half the other side.

Half their losers won their money back and became satisfied customers, buying more picks.

I also read a story in a book about gambling about a gentleman who started his own tout service via a 900 number, and he let his 5-year-old son make all his betting picks for him.

The kid got lucky and was right 60% of the time in his first season.

It was dumb luck, but if you’d used his service, you’d have showed a profit that season.

I saw a tout selling an entire season’s worth of picks for $3000.

What kind of winning percentage would you need to see to generate a positive ROI on that $3000?

That’s a sunk cost, so you’d need to win more than $3000 for that package to be a profitable deal.

You already need to win 52.4% of the time to break even, and you need to win 52.5% or more to be profitable.

If you make less than $3000 profit, you’re still losing money.

How Much To Bet On Sports Illustrated

It’s hard to make money betting on sports when you have an upfront investment of $3000.


Yes, you can make money betting on sports. People do it every day.

But it takes a smart approach, preferably a contrarian one. You need to thoroughly understand the math and manage your bankroll appropriately.

Most importantly, you should avoid buying sports picks from experts who might not really even be experts.


Sports betting is one of the finest forms of gambling you will find. I’ve been a sports fan since I was old enough to crawl into my dad’s lap and watch games. I continued my love affair with sports through little league, high school, and college as a player. I still play competitive sports, though it has gotten tougher with a young family at home.

Sports betting is excellent because it gives you a chance to beat the house edge and walk away as a winner.

Getting Your Profit Isn’t a Cakewalk

Before you can ever make a profit, you must learn how to gain an edge. Once you have figured out how to have an advantage over the house, you need a bankroll. And if you’re looking to win a lot of money at sports betting, you better have a substantial bankroll.

I will show you why you must have a large bankroll if you want to make the most of your sports betting venture.

You probably don’t have $50-100k lying around to spend on gambling. However, there’s a simple method for building a gambling bankroll. Better yet, I’ll give you the tools to build a bankroll as you develop your sports betting skills.

You don’t have to have a six-figure bankroll to be a successful sports bettor. You certainly won’t need one to enjoy the incredible discipline.

Why Having a Bigger Bankroll Is Better

You want to have as big of a bankroll as possible in sports betting because you’re dealing with small margins. For you to simply break even against the sportsbook, you must win 52.38% of your bets. The most successful sports bettors win 53-55% of their games.

At a 57% win rate, you are essentially printing your own money. Billy Walters amassed a fortune and built an empire from sports betting. He reported a winning percentage of 57%.

Novice sports bettors don’t grasp the difficulty involved to win on a consistent and sustainable basis. I’ve witnessed gamblers make runs with the impression they could win 60% or better. We already know that 60% is unrealistic.

Real-World Application

Even 55% is incredibly tricky. Only the real sharp sports bettors enjoy this rarified air.

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But it’s in the realm of possibility.

I’ll use this 55% win percentage to illustrate why you need a large bankroll to be successful.

Imagine you are betting on 100 games a month. At 55%, this means you win 55 events and lose 45 events.

Here’s a look at how you are doing based on the average amount bet:

If you wager $11 to make $10 on every game, the total money in play is $1100. You won’t receive anything for your losses. You will get $21 for every one of the wins (your original $11 plus a gain of $10). Now, multiply those 55 wins by the $21, and you get $1155. Not too bad, but remember, this is at 55%. Finally, subtract your initial investment of $1100.

Congratulations, you made $55 this month.

What if you are a “high roller” in your circle and put $5500 into action at $55 per game. Hey, now you’re retrieving $105 for those 55 wins. That nets you a profit of $275. Still not going to pay your electric bill, but Netflix and cell phones are covered.

When you jump up to $110 for every contest, you are now placing $11,000 on the line every month. Your profit for a 55% winning percentage is only $550. That may cover your car payment. Of course, you could buy a decent car for $11,000.

How To Bet On Nfl

Sharp bettors can make a decent living on sports betting because they are betting much larger bets per game. They have put in the work to grow a bankroll that facilitates huge stakes and can weather any losing streaks that come along.

Making a Living as a Sports Bettor

Making good money as a sports bettor can be a challenge. You either have to find a lot of value bets or bet enough per event to make it worth your time. Most bookmakers are going to set the lines in a manner that will make it tough to find enough value bets.

Of course, what you consider a decent living depends on your expenses and how much money you could make working for a living. I have met many gamblers that think $2,500 a decent monthly income. At the same time, some gamblers can easily make well over $10,000 per month in another profession.

The amount you need to make as a sports bettor is inconsequential. What you need to know is that you’re going to need to risk a substantial chunk of cash to ever turn a significant profit.

The primary concern is to have a large enough bankroll to survive the ebbs and flow of losing streaks. Even the best sharp bettors have losing streaks.

The standard base bankroll for all winning sports bettors is 1 month’s bets. For 1 month of betting, assuming you’re skilled enough to win $5k on 100 bets, that’s $100,000.

Eventually, you are going to run into the problem of getting enough money down to cover all your bets. Fortunately, online sportsbooks can undoubtedly make this less taxing for you. You may find it best to live in an area where you can simply walk in and place live bets.

A Basic System for Building a Bankroll That Works

I spoke earlier about building your bankroll. I prefer to take a simplistic approach to this task. By adding the same dollar amount to the bankroll every week or month, your bankroll will continue to grow, regardless of whether you’re winning yet.

If you are only betting on 10 games a week to start, you’ll quickly learn the ropes. You will also need a relatively small bankroll. Depending on your financial situation, you should aim to start with the $11 bets to win $10.

Let’s assume you’ll win 50% of your bets as you are gaining insight and experience as a sports bettor. So, you’ll need $110 to get going. You take $105 at the end of the first week and add another $110.

Now you have a $215 bankroll but are only putting $110 into action. You continue this weekly, and by the end of your first year, you’ve grown your measly $110 bankroll to over $5k.

That’s not too bad.

By the end of your first year, you should really be getting the hang of how to spot the best values. You may also have begun to increase your wagers. You may be closer to $5,500 or more.

Continue increasing your bet size incrementally as you watch your bankroll grow. In a few years, you will have amassed quite the nice little bankroll. You must be disciplined in your approach and commit to regular contributions as you improve.

So How Much Money Does a Sports Bettor Need?

There’s no right or wrong answer.

It entirely depends on the individual and what they hope to accomplish.

I’ve shown you how to start with as little as $110 and grow that into a serviceable bankroll if you are a casual sports bettor that only wants to enjoy the thrill of gambling on a budget.

Understanding Sports Bets

On the other hand, if you are planning to make this a long-term investment opportunity or become a professional sports bettor. You are going to need to come up with somewhere between $50-100k.

Having $100,000 in your bankroll is going to allow you to have enough to lay the bets that will net you a livable profit while also ensuring you can survive any losing streaks.

I’ll make it clear and definitive. A sports bettor needs between $110 and $100,000 in their bankroll. You can decide for yourself what type of sports bettor you’re going to be.


The outline I’ve provided for you may not be the most exciting way to get your bankroll started. I can promise you that it will work, though.

If you stick to the script and remain patient, you’ll see your bankroll continue to gain momentum, regardless of whether or not you are winning.

How Much Is Bet On Sports Each Year

By adopting an aggressive betting strategy, you can even grow that $110 bankroll to over $100,000 in as few as 5 years.

Get out there and start building that bankroll.