Cash Out in Sports Betting | Beginner’s Guide

Cash Out in Sports Betting

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2 years ago
4 min read
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When you place a wager on a sporting event, many sportsbooks give you the option of cashing out your bet before the event finishes. But how does a cash out work in practice? And when can you settle a bet early? Here, we take a closer look at what it means to cash out and help you understand if it’s a smart move for you. 

What is a Cash Out in Sports Betting?

A cash out is when a sportsbook offers you the opportunity to settle your bet before the fixture ends. You won’t be offered the full amount, but a cash out offer enables you to take a proportion of your winnings if you doubt that your selection will actually win. 

The sportsbook will decide how much to offer you to cash out your bet, and it’s entirely up to you whether or not you accept it. Not all bets can be cashed out, and changes in the score and other live events will influence a sportsbook’s offer. 

How Does a Cash Out Work in Practice?

Looking at an example is the best way to understand how a cash out works fully. So, let’s assume that you’ve placed a soccer parlay bet as follows: 

Chicago Fire, LAFC, and Columbus Crew to win @ +370 

Let’s assume that you’ve placed the above wager with a $100 bet. Should all three teams win, you stand to profit $370 from your bet. In our example, all three matches kicked off at the same time, and for your parlay bet to win, each of your selections needs to win their respective matches. 

With 80 minutes on the clock, Chicago are 3-0 up in their fixture, while LAFC are winning 2-0. They’re nailed on to win their matches, barring a disaster. But in your third and final game, Columbus are tied at 0-0 against New York Red Bulls and are defending for their lives against waves of attacks. 

In this scenario, the sportsbook might offer you the chance to cash out your parlay bet for odds of +210. So, instead of winning the full amount ($370), you can settle your bet with ten minutes of normal time remaining in each of the matches and stand to make a profit of $210. 

This mitigates the risk of New York scoring a late goal to defeat Columbus and means you will win your bet regardless of what happens during the remaining minutes of each fixture. You will just have to settle for a lower amount of money, but it’s still a win at the end of the day. 

As such, cash outs are beneficial to both the bookmaker and punter. The sportsbook isn’t liable for the full amount of the bet, while you get to settle your bet early, protecting you from any late drama in the fixtures you’ve bet on. 

When Can You Cash Out a Bet?

The cash out feature is essentially a form of live betting, meaning that it becomes active as soon as the fixture begins. However, you need to check in advance that your wager is eligible for cash out, as it’s certainly not a given at all sportsbooks.

Sportsbooks typically offer cash out options for moneyline wagers, point spread bets, parlay bets, and totals betting, among others. You can regard it as an insurance policy, and if things aren’t going your way on the field, you can cash out at any time to recoup your stake and potentially make a small profit.

You should also be aware that a sportsbook reserves the right to suspend your ability to cash out, based on what’s happening on the field. Sticking with our soccer example from above, if New York were awarded a penalty kick with only a few minutes to go and you hadn’t yet cashed out, the feature would be suspended until the kick is taken. 

You would then be offered revised odds for cashing out, depending on whether the penalty was scored or missed. As such, timing is everything when it comes to cashing out bets, and you need to have access to your sports betting account and keep your eyes on the scorelines before deciding whether or not to cash out your wager.

Should You Take the Offer of a Cash Out?

This really depends on your betting strategy and what you think is likely to happen during the remainder of the fixture. One thing you need to understand about sports betting is that sports are completely unpredictable often, and form often goes out of the window during matches. 

Also, team sports often see their fair share of late drama, with goals, TDs, and dunks often occurring when there’s very little time left on the clock. Of course, late action can make or break your betting slip, costing you your winnings if the match goes against you. But this is all part of the betting experience, and you will win some and lose some.

Therefore, you need to regard the cash out option for every fixture to which it applies. It might be super helpful to you one week, then cost you a significant profit the next. So, in short, it’s entirely up to you whether or not you cash out. Just use it wisely and go with your gut instinct. 

Recap: Cashing Out Your Sports Bets

The cash out feature is a popular option for sports bettors and allows you to settle your wagers before the fixture ends. The sportsbook will offer you reduced odds to settle early, but it can be a good way to make some profit if you’re not confident in your initial selection. 

But as mentioned, you need to be careful. Cashing out can work both ways, and it may cost you a fair amount of profit if you fall into the temptation of cashing out more often than not. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is a cash out in sports betting?

A cash out is an offer from the sportsbook to settle your bet early before the result is declared. You might be offered less money, but you will at least guarantee a profit. It’s useful if you think your bet might fail at the last minute.

Are cash out bets legit?

Yes, it’s a good way to lock in a profit of a winning bet before anything goes wrong, like a last-minute touchdown ruining your bet. Just be aware that your cash out offer will be lower than your potential winnings if you stick with your original bet.

Is sports betting legal in Ohio?

Yes, it is now legal to bet on sports games in Ohio using one of the licensed and regulated online sportsbooks.