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Five keys to bankroll management

6 Min Read

Golfbet News

Five keys to bankroll management

    Written by Staff, PGATOUR.COM

    Bet with your head – not over it.

    It’s a catchy one-liner that makes plenty of sense in the sports betting world if you want to enjoy the entertainment value of wagering.

    The importance of building and managing a bankroll cannot be understated if you plan on mitigating unnecessary risk and have the best chance for a solid return on investment (ROI).

    For individuals starting out in betting, it can be an intimidating topic. What is a bankroll? How much should I earmark for my wagers? What is the appropriate amount for each bet?

    A bankroll refers to the amount of money you have allocated for overall betting and can also extend to the amount you are comfortable betting at any particular stage.

    We all hope to win every bet we place, but the reality is that will not happen. We should only play with money we are prepared to lose. Being in control of what is in your account – and what you might put in to restock it – is obviously wise.

    Here are five keys to properly managing a bankroll, to help ensure that betting is always done responsibly:

    1. Work out an appropriate budget

    Not all budgets are created equal. The disposable income of one person won’t match that of their neighbor, friend or relative and each person should be vigilant in figuring out what works for them.

    Look at your budget in terms of entertainment dollars. Just like going to the movies, or eating out at a restaurant, or tickets to the game… what money are we prepared to put aside for wagering as an entertainment product?

    Are you planning on being a regular bettor? Or just the occasional big event? If you lose your initial deposit, what are you prepared to re-invest, if anything? Knowing what you can spend is imperative to being a responsible gamer.

    2. Build a unit size and scale accordingly

    Once your budget is established it is prudent to figure out your unit size. This is the amount or range of amounts you are likely to wager on each bet. You don’t want to blow all your cash in one bet; rather, you need to find a comfortable percentage of your budget to allocate for each wager placed.

    Most conservative bettors look to use 1-2% of their initial bankroll as a unit size, while a more aggressive (but still budget-conscious) approach would be scaling larger wagers between 3-5%.

    In other words, if your starting bankroll was $500, a conservative unit would be $5 to $10 per bet while a more aggressive approach would be $15-$25. If your bankroll was $100 – conservative would be $1-$2 bets, while the riskier approach would be $3-$5 bets.

    Keep in mind, how bettors utilize units can vary within golf betting where odds on outright markets are much higher. The amount of money you wager on a player to win a tournament at +5000 odds likely will not be the same amount you wager on him to win a head-to-head matchup at -110 odds. So within golf betting, it could make sense to use a fraction of a unit (0.10, 0.25, 0.50 etc.) when trying to budget for outright or longshot wagers.

    3. Stick to your budget, regardless of wins and losses

    Now that you have your budget and unit size, we recommend you stick with it. Some individuals utilize a “flat betting” approach, whereby they bet the same amount for each wager, while others will scale their units based on their perceived edge. By sticking at 3-5% or less of your bankroll per bet, you create the opportunity to maintain (and hopefully grow) your bankroll for much longer.

    It can be very tempting to double down on any winnings when you’re on a hot streak to chase even more rewards. It can also be tempting to try to chase losses with a quick fix or a bigger bet. The rollercoaster of sports betting will throw these runs your way, but being a disciplined rider will ensure you get more bang for your buck.

    It is also wise to set a deposit limit to ensure you don’t overspend your budget and set a withdrawal mark to pull out profits for you to enjoy without the risk of losing back hard-earned gains.

    4. Bet with your head, not your heart

    One of the biggest mistakes new (and sometimes long-term) sports bettors make is betting too much on a result they were already emotionally invested in as fans.

    Of course, it can heighten the fun to bet on your favorite golfers but if they are in the middle of a form slump, or if they have always struggled at the current tournament course, no amount of wishing they would win can help them actually achieve it.

    Generally, those players are showing high odds for a reason, and while golf often sees longshot winners, splashing all your budget on a long shot isn’t a great strategy.

    That’s not to say to never back a long shot. In golf, unlike many team sports, underdogs do pop up on a regular basis. But lean to the conservative side of your unit price in these cases.

    Remember, a small win is still a win. A loss is always a loss.

    5. Hunt for budget enhancements and promos, but be wary of parlays

    Most sportsbooks offer a bonus when you sign up, matching your investment in bonus bets, or using some other incentive. Don’t be afraid to look around for the best deals.

    But it doesn’t end at new customers with promos often offered by the major sportsbooks. The key here is to be savvy and figure out what are good choices to boost your cause, and which may not be.

    Some of the ones to look out for include odds boosts, bonus bets and reload bonuses. These can be tools to increase odds on an individual wager and potentially stretch your bankroll, but as always, choose wisely.

    One of the promos you might want to limit yourself on are big parlay bets. Parlays are when you combine multiple single bets into one big multi-bet to boost your odds to large proportions. But you must win every leg of the parlay to score the big win, meaning only one leg needs to fail for it to go haywire.

    There is no doubt the lottery-like feeling of multiple results coming off at high odds can be inducing, and the temptation of turning a small wager into a big win is undeniable. But they rarely hit: The true odds of a four-leg parlay (each at -110) would be +1500 or 15 to 1. So be sure to only consider these in moderation utilizing smaller unit sizes – and be sure to check the odds payouts against what other outlets are offering and what the true odds of the outcome should be.

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