Lay Betting System: What is it?

• Betting
• Betting Systems

Lay betting systems are those that require to pick losers rather than winners. They can be used on almost any sports betting event you care to think of. However, they can only be used with sportsbooks that actually allow you to lay competitors and outcomes as well as bet on them. In this article we will explain how lay betting systems work and how to use them.

What is Lay Betting?

Before we can begin to discuss lay betting systems, we should first define lay betting itself. This differs from normal betting because it seeks to do the opposite. When you normally place a bet, you are hoping that your selection will win the event. However, when you lay a selection, you are hoping that it will lose.

In rather simplistic terms, you are allowing others to bet with you on a certain selection. If the selection wins, you have to settle the bet at the odds you offered. If the selection loses, you get to keep the money staked by the bettor. In other words, you are operating just like a bookie, albeit in a rather limited way.

Lay betting has become massively popular thanks to specialist betting exchanges such as Betfair. These provide platforms where bettors and layers can back and lay selections with each other. They offer a wide variety of markets to participate in, just like regular sportsbooks.

Lay Betting Systems Available 

There are really two kinds of lay betting systems that you will come across. The first kind is operated by a third party, such as a tipster service. You won't get to understand the system itself, but will simply be given the selections of the system used by the service.

Lay Betting Tipster Services

Tipster services can be useful for those who have limited time. That's because they don't require any real homework. All you have to do is wait for the selection to be provided and then lay it with the exchange.

Of course, you have to trust that the tipster knows what he is doing. Picking losers might sound easy, but it can be harder than you imagine. It can also be risky, as a single winner could wipe out profits gained from a sequence of losers.

DIY Lay Betting

The second approach is to come up with your own selections. This will require you to do your own form study and make your own assessment of each event. The advantage, however, is that you will be in complete conrol of your lay betting destiny.

You can develop a lay betting strategy and put it to the test without risking any cash. If it doesn't work as effectively as you want, all you've lost is a little time. You can then have a go at developing another one that's more effective. When you do manage to develop a selection method that works, it's yours to use for as long as you want. And no subscription fees are required!

The Advantages of Lay Betting Systems

Lay betting systems offer a number of advantages over bet on winner systems. One of the biggest is that they can be less risky.

Consider a horse race that has eight runners. If you lay one horse, you are effectively betting that any one of the other seven will come out ahead. You therefore have a 7 in 8 chance of success instead of 1 in 8 when betting on the winner. This assumes that all of the horses have equal ability, which won't often be the case. However, the advantage of lay betting is quite clear for all to see.

Lay betting can therefore give you a higher success rate that betting on likely winners. Some have estimated an average success rate of 80% versus around 35%.

Another advantage concerns odds and stakes. If you place a typical bet, you have to try and find the very best odds available. This takes time, and time is money. When laying, your only concern is getting someone to bet with you - preferably at the lowest odds possible.

Lay Betting Systems and Commission

A word should be made on the topic of commission. When lay betting with an exchange such as Betfair, your winnings will be subject to a commission. This tends to be around 5%.

The stake you receive from a bettor (or the sum you lay) counts as your winnings if the selection loses. So if you take a bet of $10 and it loses, your profit is $10, regardless of the odds. You would then be charged 5% on that profit, giving you $9.50.

Maria's Lay Betting System

In 2005, Maria Santonix was a woman who liked to lay horses. She also liked to show her selections on a horse racing forum. She posted for 300 days and in that time she turned a $3,000 bankroll into more than $100,000.

Because of this, Maria became popular in horse racing betting circles. Many people were keen to know what her lay betting system was. 

It turned out that Maria's father had inside information that aided her choices on what horses to lay. However, her actual laying system can still be very helpful. Not with making selections, but with deciding how much to lay in each case.

This lay betting system is easy to understand, and is summarised in the following table. The first column shows the odds of your selection. The second column shows the percentage of your bankroll that you should lay.

Odds% of Bankroll to Lay
3.5 or less1.0%
3.6 to 7.50.6%
7.5 to 110.4%
Higher than 11Do not lay.
Example Lay Betting Schedule

Football Lay Betting Systems

There are many football lay betting systems currently being used. In this case, by football we are referring to soccer. The most popular football lay betting systems rely on various mathematical equations to maximize profits. 

While there are some solid ones out there, most of them are quite complex. Of course, if you come across one that interests you, there is nothing to stop you trying it.

A simpler football lay betting system is the back and lay system. This involves laying the draw and then hedging it by betting on it later at increased odds.

Lay Betting Systems FAQ

What is the best betting exchange for lay betting systems?
Betfair is the most popular and widely used betting exchange.
What is the best lay betting system?
There is no 'best' lay betting system. Our advice is to explore what's available and paper trade so that you can see how each one performs. Or, even better, you could develop a system your own.
Should I use handicapping for lay betting systems?
Yes. Any time you bet on sports or horse racing, you can increase your chances of winning by handicapping games or races. Handicapping is a great tool, regardless of whether you are lay betting or placing a wager on a selection to win.