How Does Betting Work?

When you place a bet on sports, it’s obviously important that you understand how it works, which sports are involved, and what the odds are. But once you’ve got that down, there are some interesting subtleties surrounding sports betting that you may not know about. Here’s a quick run-down of how betting on sports works, including some interesting tidbits that you might not have known about.

The Basics

To start with, let’s talk about the terminology. When you place a bet, you’re often asked if you want to “lay” the odds or “take” the odds. A lay bettor says they’re laying the odds, and a take-maker says they’re taking the odds. While there are some exceptions, the general rule is: the closer the game is, the more you’ll want to lay the odds; and vice versa for the reverse. This is because, when the game is closer, there’s more at stake, so you’re more likely to win or lose based on the outcome. For that reason, you’ll often see gamblers laying big money on late-stage games, while small-time and middle-bets are more common in early and middle-stages of a game.

What Are The Odds?

What are the odds? That is the essential question that every sports bettor must ask themselves before placing a bet. Basically, the odds are the amount of money a bookmaker is willing to give you in exchange for a wager. In most cases, you’ll need to look at the odds given in relation to the amount of money you’re planning to wager or risk. For example, if you’re planning on wagering $100, you might want to look at the odds as 35:1, meaning that for every $100 you wager, you’ll win $35. This is called “making money” on the bet because you’ll have won $35 for every $100 that you risked. You can do the same thing by taking the other side of the bet, of course, but the bookmaker usually doesn’t offer these types of odds to take-makers (more on that in a bit).

What Are The Books?

The books are the individuals or companies who manage and settle the wagers made by sports bettors. Most of the time, when you place a bet on a game, you’ll be dealing with one of the big-name sportsbooks, which are actually a combination of a bookmaker and an online casino. These are the books you’ll need to worry about if you want to place a bet on the NBA, NFL, NHL, or Major League Baseball. There are also books for European soccer, college football, and college basketball. Some people also gamble on various races and other competitive events, such as the Kentucky Derby and the American Masters tennis tournament. When placing a bet on one of these events, you’ll need to find out what book is handling that sport. It’s often not the same as the book for the game you’re interested in betting on.

How Do I Place A Bet?

Now that you know the basics, let’s dive into how to place a bet. To start, you’ll need to have an account with a sportsbook. If you don’t have one already, you can open an account with a reputable sportsbook here: ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ 

Once you have your account set up, you can start making wagers on the various sporting events you’re interested in. Make sure to read the rules and regulations surrounding sports betting, as they can vary from book to book and from state to state. All you need is a reliable source of income and a place to store it (i.e., a bank account).

What If I Lost All My Money?

If you’re using cash rather than a credit card to make the deposit, then you’ve essentially got nothing to worry about. If you deposited an amount greater than $10,000 in cash, then you’ll need to file an IRS form declaring your winnings. Remember: you’re a sports bettor, not a gambler, so you won’t be needing to file any gambling winnings taxes. You’ll also need to check with your state’s department of gambling to make sure that you’re not violating any laws regarding sports betting (more on that in a bit).

On the other hand, if you used a credit card to make the deposit, then you’ll need to file an IRS form 1099-GAM to report your winnings. This is one of the more tedious parts of being a professional sports bettor, but the money you earn is usually enough to make it worth the effort (at least, in the eyes of the IRS). If you didn’t already know, it’s important to keep in mind that gambling is considered a ‘business’ form of income in the eyes of the IRS, which means that you’ll need to pay taxes on your winnings. That is unless you meet the requirements for an IRS gambling waiver. More information on this can be found here: ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎′>‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎ ‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎‎\’>‎ 

In either case, once you file the form, you’ll need to wait for it to be processed. It usually takes about two weeks to get a 1099-GAM or 1099-CS if you used a credit card. You can also ask the bookmaker to send you an IRS form W-9 so they can send you the proper paperwork. It is important to keep in mind that this is not the same as claiming gambling winnings on your tax return though. You must file a separate return for that, and you’ll need to follow the instructions carefully. Failure to do so may result in a big tax bill. In some cases, it’s also possible to use a tax attorney to help with the IRS paperwork. For instance, if you’re worried about being audited, then having a tax attorney look over your shoulder while you fill out the paperwork might be a prudent move. In other cases, if you have a lot of money to report, then there are easier ways to get around paying taxes than filing forms.

What Should I Do With My Winnings?

Once you’ve filed the necessary paperwork and waited for it to be processed, you can sit back and enjoy your profits. In the case of professional gamblers, it is generally best to wait until after the game to do anything with the winnings, as the adrenaline of the game will make it more difficult for you to relax and enjoy a profit. That being said, you might want to consider buying some sports books or analyzing gear, as knowing exactly how your wagers performed in relation to the spread can be useful information (more on this in a bit).