Dealing With Local BookiesNearly every article written about sports gambling assumes the bettor is betting through online sportsbooks or in Nevada. While many sports bettors do wager through those outlets, there's a huge number of gamblers who wager through their local bookies, especially on the East Coast on the United States.
There are certain advantages and disadvantages of dealing with local bookies, especially with contrasted to the ability to place sports legally in the state of Nevada, but the differences aren't nearly as great compared to wagering online, as both are currently deemed illegal in the U.S.
One of the great misconceptions about placing sports bets online is that it is safer than dealing with local bookies, but there are numerous online sportsbooks that are notorious for not paying customers. Before sending any online sportsbooks your money, it's worth spending a few minutes of your time to check them out. Read How to Choose an Online Sportsbook.
A number of local bookies are as trustworthy with your money as your local bank. If you've dealt with the same bookie for a number of years and have never run into any sort of problems, the chances are you won't have any problems in the future.
The easiest way to avoid problems is simply to ask your bookie to read every wager back to you after you've placed your bets. Most of them do this any way, but it never hurts to do it again.
One of the key differences in dealing with local bookies, as opposed to online sportsbooks or wagering in Nevada, is that you generally are not required to put the up the money at the time you place your wager, something that can be a blessing or a curse, depending on the situation. This one difference has caused the ruin of more sports bettors than any other single factor, as it becomes too easy to chase losses or bet over your head. If your bookie lets you wager on credit, a little discipline is needed.
Another disadvantage in dealing with local bookies is the smarter ones will soon be able to pick up on your betting habits. If you play almost all favorites, they will soon know and the line you receive is likely to be a half-point or a point higher than other bettors. The same holds true with underdogs and totals. If your bookie can get an edge, they're likely to take advantage of it.
Sports bettors can gain a bit of an advantage in knowing the correct odds on a given game and comparing that with the line they receive. Many locals, as they are commonly referred to, are known to shade the line one way or another, especially if they are located near a major city. A bookie in Philadelphia will almost always have the point spread on the Eagles or 76ers a little skewed towards the home team than it should be, as they know most bettors will be backing the home team.
If you have a good relationship with your bookie, don't be afraid to ask for a half-point on occasion. If you're a long-time bettor, many will give it to you without much protest.
Your bookie may also be willing to let you in on his action, depending on your relationship and the length of time you have bet with them. Many times you can ask who the bookie needs, meaning they have plenty of bets on the other side, and if you happen to like the same side they need to cover, they will let you wager at even money and forgo the usual 11-10 odds. With the increased competetion of online sportsbooks, many bookies are willing to make some small concessions here and there, especially if you've proven to be a loyal customer over the years.
Dealing with a local bookie certainly has its pros and cons, but by adding a few little tips to your wagering, can work out to your advantage.