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Understanding Betfair's minimum stake rule

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I am confused and wonder if someone could assist, please. 


My question is regarding laying to a liability on Betfair and what is the minimum stake required.


Suppose I want to lay a horse at 100 for a liability of £100, winning me the princely sum of £1.00 if the horse loses, less commission of course.  Is this bet acceptable to Betfair as my ‘winnings’ of £1.00 would be below the Betfair minimum stake of £2.00 or would I need to lay for a liability of £200 to win the Betfair minimum stake of £2.00, again less commission.


I’ve been trying to get my head round this for days, because I have read such conflicting advice.  I have heard that I could lay the £100.00 liability but Betfair wouldn’t like it and I would get my fingers rapped because the person taking the bet would have to bet below the Betfair minimum of £2.00.  Others have said that I would be ok because the liability is what matters and, if I am incorrect and the horse wins the race I will lose the liability of £100 using the original example.


All in all, my head hurts as I try to get my brain round the problem, so I thought I would ask on here and see if anyone can help.


Thanks for reading,



Edited by Yalwen
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Your lay liability (£100.00) is what you would lose if the bet actually won. This goes into a pool (win and lay bets) which are then matched against other bettors who bet the same outcome (but to win). If there isn't enough money in the pool, then bets may not be matched until this pool is big enough to do so.


E.g. Punter A lays £100.00 on an outcome to win £1.00

pool = £100.00 only (Punter A's bet isn't matched yet)

Punter B bets £2.00 (minimum stake) on same outcome  but to win.

pool = £102.00

Punter A's bet could now be matched because there is now enough money in pool to pay punter A (if successful), it would still be deemed unmatched because punter B's bet is only partially matched.

Punter B's bet is only partially matched (only £1.00 of his stake is used), a further £100.00 would still need to be laid to fulfil all the matches

Punter C lays the outcome for a further £100.00 liability,

pool = £202.00

All bets can now be matched because the pool is now big enough to cover all the bets.

i.e if outcome loses - A and C would each win £1.00 profit - B loses £2.00

if outcome wins - B would win £200.00 profit - A and C each lose £100.00












Edited by skylark2009
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I could lay the £100.00 liability but Betfair wouldn’t like it and I would get my fingers rapped because the person taking the bet would have to bet below the Betfair minimum of £2.00.

I think this is correct, in the terms and conditions it states you have to make the minimum stake, nothing about liability. If it was a win bet you wouldnt be able to strike the bet of £2, it wouldn't let you unless you used a bot or the workaround which is a bit of a faff.
I think you could strike the lay bet but may get a stern warning,

have you tried it then??

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Thanks for your replies.


skylark2009, I am still trying to get my head round your detailed explanation which I appreciate, thank you.


Billy, I have not tried this particular angle as last year I had my knuckles rapped by Betfair and it took me some time to restore the status quo in my account.  I don’t really want to go down that path again without the certainty that I know what I am doing and it's ok with Betfair.





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