Matched betting is a great way to boost your income, however, a frequent question is whether it'll affect any future mortgage applications. Many people are put off by matched betting because they are planning on applying for a mortgage within the next 2 years, but you have no need to worry as here's all you need to know about matched betting and mortgages.
Nowadays, when you apply for a mortgage, you will go through your current income and outgoings, with 3 months worth of bank statements to back this up. Every application is different though, so this blog post is advisory only.
What is matched betting?
Matched betting is a way to make some serious guaranteed profit by utilising the free bet offers that bookmakers offer. It's a rare side hustle that's both tax-free and risk-free! Even The Guardian have written about matched betting! People often ask me “if matched betting is so good, why isn’t everyone doing it?” – and I have addressed some of the popular questions in a blog post.
Matched betting income doesn't count towards your income for mortgage purposes
One great thing about matched betting is that the income you make is tax-free. Normally this is a good thing, however, in terms of a mortgage, it does mean that income you generate from matched betting does not count as income for these purposes. In other words, it means that you cannot declare your matched betting earnings as income, so you will have to ensure that your existing income is suitable enough.
Matched betting will not show up on your credit report*
*To some extent. Have you ever looked for car insurance on a comparison website? If you have, then you might see some activity in the research searches of your credit report. This is exactly what some of the bookmakers do too. Here's an example of what matched betting looks like on a credit report.
As you can see, these are all anti-money laundering checks and making sure I am who I say I am. These are not credit checks because you aren't applying for credit. Potential lenders won't see this information! This is known as a “soft search”.
For those unfamiliar with the term, a soft search is where a credit search is made on your credit file, but it doesn't affect your credit score. Lenders cannot see this information so it will not affect their decision about whether to lend to you or not.
You aren't getting credit with the bookmakers
Whether you are gambling traditionally, or you are matched betting, you aren't taking out credit with the bookmakers. You need to deposit your own money into bookmaker accounts and they don't offer a credit facility, which is why they don't need to perform any credit checks on you. It is solely when applying for financial products with credit, that you will have a full search carried out.
What about bank statements?
As previously mentioned, your potential mortgage lender will usually want to see at least 3 months' worth of bank statements from you, sometimes up to 6 months. Whether frequent transactions with bookmakers on your bank account will hinder your mortgage application or not is still debated.
Here's what I would suggest:
Whether you want to take out a mortgage or another financial product, you should be using a different bank account for matched betting regardless. It has several advantages, including helping you keep track of your matched betting money and make you more likely to keep your matched betting money together in your pot. If you do need to apply for a mortgage, you can then just produce your main bank accounts – the ones where your income and outgoings are shown, excluding your matched betting activity. Banks are unlikely to ask to see any other bank accounts that show your matched betting related activity, but it's not an impossible occurrence.
Your mortgage application is a pretty big one, so if you are concerned about matched betting having an impact on your potential lender's decision then there are a few things that you can do:
You could move all of your matched betting money into an online account such as Skrill, which would mean that transactions won't be appearing on your bank account, however, some bookmaker offers aren't applicable if you use Skrill. You will need to check the terms and conditions of applicable offers.
You could load up your exchange and bookmaker accounts and then take a break – if you are lucky enough then you will have enough money in most of your accounts to keep you going throughout this time!
Or finally, you could take a 3-month gap from matched betting and come back to it once your application has been approved. Matched betting will always be there for you, it's not a seasonal thing!
Using your matched betting income as a house deposit
Many people started matched betting initially to help save money towards a house deposit. It is a great, guaranteed way to boost your income, however, this is another subjective area where different viewpoints are available. Most of the time, people have been able to deposit a large amount of money from their extra bank account into their normal bank account, looking as though it has come from a savings account. When applying for a mortgage, it stands to reason that your income exceeds your outgoings, so it wouldn't look out of place to be transferring a large sum money that you have saved, in order to cover the deposit.
In the more rare occurrences, sometimes lenders ask for proof of where exactly the deposit came from, so this can vary by lender.
If you have any questions or want to share your own experience about matched betting and mortgages then leave a comment below!