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blackeagle
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Hello, I was wondering if anyone could share some knowledge on starting a home poker game. Lay out some of the main things I will need. I will first tell you what I have. I have a college dorm with enough room and chairs. I have a full size poker table with a dealer spot. I can get drinks and I can get food. I plan on running a .25/.50 game with 40 min buy in. I was told that if I had a lot of food and drinks along with variety I could charge a 10% rake. But I am just starting off so nothing has been confirmed yet. I am sure there are plenty of knowledgeable people who could shed some light on my situation. Thanks!

Some Questions
What kind of food should I have? pizza possibly?
What kind of drinks? Beer, coke products what else?
What kind of incentives should I use to draw people to my game?
Should I change my min buy in?
What kind of rake should I have starting off?

A little about my table.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002TS12VM/ref=oss_product


I know half the people here hate me and the other half don't know me so sorry for the inconvenience of seeing my post. I don't mean to be ignorant.
kcg5
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Nice table. If it were me, in college, I'd wonder why I'm paying a rake when I could go to anyone elses house and play for free and drink my own booze. $0 might be a bit steep for guys in college, but I have no idea where you go..

as for incentives, I'd promise people I wouldn't cheat
Nobody expects the spanish inquisition!!!!!



"History will be kind to me, as I intend to write it"- Sir Winston Churchill
blackeagle
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Quote:
On 2010-09-02 00:28, kcg5 wrote:
Nice table. If it were me, in college, I'd wonder why I'm paying a rake when I could go to anyone else's house and play for free and drink my own booze. $0 might be a bit steep for guys in college, but I have no idea where you go..

as for incentives, I'd promise people I wouldn't cheat

ok maybe less rake. Or like 5 dollars at the door for all night of rake free poker. They don't know me so cheating is not on there mind. I'll promise safe environment and everything like that. No donkeys.

Quote:
On 2010-09-02 00:42, Maitre D wrote:
First, I have 2 questions.

How the **** can you fit that table in a dorm room? And...

Why the **** would you charge a rake? Have them chip in for drinks or pizza and the event will pay for itself.

Personally, I think the stakes are a bit steep for the average college student. I'd suggest .10/.20 or .02/.05, but it really depends on the demographics of your college.

The incentive used to draw people to your game is the fact that it's a nearby poker game on a poker table.

I charge rake to make money off my services for dealing, providing food, and place to play on a table.
I go to a college that is among the best 50 private universities in the country. I am on scholarship but it is about 50K a year for the average Joe.
kcg5
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I was kidding about the cheating thing. But, since you mention it, that fact that they don't know you would make it more suspicious to myself. I would think to even mention a safe environment would make people think...


are you looking to make money off the rake, a real profit? Or do you just want to have a regular game?
Nobody expects the spanish inquisition!!!!!



"History will be kind to me, as I intend to write it"- Sir Winston Churchill
blackeagle
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Quote:
On 2010-09-02 00:47, kcg5 wrote:
I was kidding about the cheating thing. But, since you mention it, that fact that they don't know you would make it more suspicious to myself. I would think to even mention a safe environment would make people think...


are you looking to make money off the rake, a real profit? Or do you just want to have a regular game?

Everywhere you go the first thing people say is Safe Environment. I want to make money off the game. It would be once a week.
Maitre D
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Blackeagle, looks like you quoted me just before I deleted my message (I was editing it and realized I was going to need more time).

Before I say anything else, answer this...

Will you be taking any sort of advantage during the game? Don't beat around the bush with the answer.
blackeagle
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Quote:
On 2010-09-02 01:07, Maitre D wrote:
Blackeagle, looks like you quoted me just before I deleted my message (I was editing it and realized I was going to need more time).

Before I say anything else, answer this...

Will you be taking any sort of advantage during the game? Don't beat around the bush with the answer.

I haven't really decided. I could have a partner sit in and play tight then win one hand Aces over Kings whenever I feel fit. Or two pairs of aces and kings are out on the board. But I would only do that once a month. I could deal a set of deuces to partner. Pretty much, I haven't decided but I am about 70% sure that I plan on manipulating the cards to some extent to give my partner an advantage. But I would be very subtle about it. And he would lose some small hands as well.
silverking
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Also, realize (and plan for) the fact that it's the rake that's going to put you on the wrong side of the law.

One guy from your game with a beef against you or one of your other players is all it takes to phone the local Constabulary, whose first question to him will likely be "does he charge you for a seat?...... does he rake the pot?"

You're in a fixed location, with a relatively limited set of potential players (your fellow students), and presumably you want some regular players who will keep coming back......and hopefully bringing some new fish with them on a regular basis.

The only way you're going to accomplish this in a college dorm situation is to offer a guaranteed straight up and clean game, and make sure that rep sticks.
All it takes is the rumor that there's cheaters at the table, and you'll likely be playing alone.

All in all, if you're an excellent player, with a firm understanding of the game (via Skansky's "Hold'Em For Advanced Players" and other select texts)......this is a great way to make money in a college situation.
The potential for a nightly full table is high........and all you've got to worry about is when you're actually going to study. This kind of "bottomless" poker game, with an endless line of potential fish doesn't take long before it dominates each 24 hour block of your life.

In the end, if you've got enough skill, and play long enough stretches with folks who will also play long stretches........you'll do well enough personally that you won't even need to rake the pot.
If you feel you must make a nut off the seats, then start some sort of totally unrelated "membership only" poetry club, and make the game a social event of that club.
Your local Sheriff will have seen and heard it all before no doubt......but at least try to put some distance between you and a rake or seat charge.
Maitre D
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Whether you will cheat or not will greatly change the answers you get to your original questions.

So... Until you give us a straight and confident answer, we can't give you any real helpful advice.
silverking
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You're not a road hustler, you're a college kid playing a poker game in his dorm room.

If you must cheat, go do it at somebody else's game.......you don't do it at your own game, one with a fixed location that happens to be where you live, and one which you hope your fish will return to again and again.
Even the fish aren't totally stupid........folks always recognize where the moneys gone at the end of the night.

Cheating will kill your game before you even manage to pay off your poker table.

Don't s_h_i_t where you live.
blackeagle
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Quote:
On 2010-09-02 01:29, silverking wrote:
Also, realize (and plan for) the fact that it's the rake that's going to put you on the wrong side of the law.

One guy from your game with a beef against you or one of your other players is all it takes to phone the local Constabulary, whose first question to him will likely be "does he charge you for a seat?. Does he rake the pot?"

You're in a fixed location, with a relatively limited set of potential players (your fellow students), and presumably you want some regular players who will keep coming back...and hopefully bringing some new fish with them on a regular basis.

The only way you're going to accomplish this in a college dorm situation is to offer a guaranteed straight up and clean game, and make sure that rep sticks.
All it takes is the rumor that there's cheaters at the table, and you'll likely be playing alone.

All in all, if you're an excellent player, with a firm understanding of the game (via Skansky's "Hold'Em For Advanced Players" and other select texts)...this is a great way to make money in a college situation.
The potential for a nightly full table is high...and all you've got to worry about is when you're actually going to study. This kind of "bottomless" poker game, with an endless line of potential fish doesn't take long before it dominates each 24 hour block of your life.

In the end, if you've got enough skill, and play long enough stretches with folks who will also play long stretches...you'll do well enough personally that you won't even need to rake the pot.
If you feel you must make a nut off the seats, then start some sort of totally unrelated "membership only" poetry club, and make the game a social event of that club.
Your local Sheriff will have seen and heard it all before no doubt...but at least try to put some distance between you and a rake or seat charge.

What if I charged everyone 10 dollars for pizza and drinks. Then when they bought it, I could put all their money in a safe. If the law were to come in, which they would need probable cause, there would be no evidence of gambling. But I highly doubt it will ever amount to that much trouble. Ill start small and build up. Any other thought though?

Quote:
On 2010-09-02 01:37, silverking wrote:
You're not a road hustler, you're a college kid playing a poker game in his dorm room.

If you must cheat, go do it at somebody else's game.......you don't do it at your own game, one with a fixed location that happens to be where you live, and one which you hope your fish will return to again and again.
Even the fish aren't totally stupid...folks always recognize where the moneys gone at the end of the night.

Cheating will kill your game before you even manage to pay off your poker table.

Don't s_h_i_t where you live.

It's a cash game thus my partner would not have to win no more than one or two nice hands. Also, I wouldn't be playing either. I would be dealing the whole time. It makes it very easy to put together a hand that way. And if I went somewhere else I would have to use those ****ty plastic cards I hate so much cause everyone has them where I have a box of WPT playing cards.(They are nice bee's)
silverking
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College's are a bottomless pit of fine fish........you should do very well.

As for charging for food and drink to conceal the rake.......it's all been done before, and doesn't hide much from a local Sheriff looking to shut down a game.
These guys know how to look for the rake in all its cleverly hidden forms.

Best thing to do is try your best to separate the rake from the game. It doesn't always work, and all it takes is one guy to tip it.......but that's what folks do.........it's the Social Club membership fee in its "hide the rake" format.
blackeagle
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Quote:
On 2010-09-02 01:54, silverking wrote:
College's are a bottomless pit of fine fish........you should do very well.

As for charging for food and drink to conceal the rake.......it's all been done before, and doesn't hide much from a local Sheriff looking to shut down a game.
These guys know how to look for the rake in all its cleverly hidden forms.

Best thing to do is try your best to separate the rake from the game. It doesn't always work, and all it takes is one guy to tip it.......but that's what folks do.........it's the Social Club membership fee in its "hide the rake" format.


SilverKing, you help me a lot and I have done nothing in return. So thank you for your knowledge. If they give me money for pizza I am legally cleared from taking any kind of rake.
silverking
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The "beer and pizza" ploy is old, and really depends on whether you wind up taking in $175.00 beer and pizza rake, but only supply $30.00 worth of pizza to eat and $60.00 worth of beer drink.

That effectively equals an $85.00 rake.

The beer and pizza angle only works if all the money you take in for beer and pizza gets spent on beer and pizza.......otherwise, in the eyes of the law it's a rake.

You were accurate a few posts above though.......it probably won't matter in a small game, and you'll likely not have to deal with you local law enforcement........ if you do get questioned though, it's worth making sure in advance that the rake is well enough concealed that (at the very least) you can plead ignorance.

Personally, in the past we've put the rake into a paid membership card for a club that had nothing to do with poker.
Even that's not foolproof, and I'm only one in a very long line of folks who have attempted to conceal a rake in a club membership fee.
LobowolfXXX
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You were offering advice on how to double the income of a guy who makes a full-time living from the gambling arena, and now you want to know if you can rake 10% from a .25-.50 home game? God bless America!!

Keep an eye on whom you invite; even if the cops don't care, the university might. I suspect there's a clause in your residential housing agreement pertaining to illegal activities on the premises.

As for the game itself, think about the kind of stuff you'd like, if you were a guest. Variety in snacks & drinks is good, and a friendly atmosphere. If you're playing on the level, don't embarrass or abuse the bad players when they suck out, as they invariably will, and don't let anyone else do it, either. Those are the guys you want in the game. Unfortunately, there's always some idiot whose ego has to get in the way, and he has to explain to everyone how much smarter he is than the idiot that just took his chips. And when that happens, the idiots do one of two things - they tighten up, or they quit showing up. Neither is a good thing.

Read, reread, and reread Sklansky. Specifically, "The Theory of Poker." There are only 8 mistakes you can make in limit* poker -

If you're first:
Checking when you should bet
Betting when you should check

If someone else is first:
Raising when you should call or fold
Calling when you should raise or fold
Folding when you should raise or call

In no limit, there's another - betting the wrong amount.

By far, the most common error weak players make is calling when they should fold. So go easy on the bluffs. When you bluff a calling station, you turn his bad play (calling too much) into a good play. Well-placed value bets get the money in a weak game.

Know who's coming - people you know, or someone whom someone you know vouches for. You don't want the guy who knows a guy who's a neighbor of a guy. Those are the ones who'll cause you problems you don't want to deal with.
"Torture doesn't work" lol
Guess they forgot to tell Bill Buckley.

"...as we reason and love, we are able to hope. And hope enables us to resist those things that would enslave us."
blackeagle
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Quote:
On 2010-09-02 03:01, LobowolfXXX wrote:
You were offering advice on how to double the income of a guy who makes a full-time living from the gambling arena, and now you want to know if you can rake 10% from a .25-.50 home game? God bless America!!

This is really annoying. I clearly stated that 10 % not what I decided on. I merely mentioned it because a friend told me it was standard.
uhrenschmied
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Quote:
On 2010-09-02 11:22, blackeagle wrote:
Quote:
On 2010-09-02 03:01, LobowolfXXX wrote:
You were offering advice on how to double the income of a guy who makes a full-time living from the gambling arena, and now you want to know if you can rake 10% from a .25-.50 home game? God bless America!!

This is really annoying. I clearly stated that 10 % not what I decided on. I merely mentioned it because a friend told me it was standard.


You are so missing the point.

Regards,
splice
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10% is standard online and in various strip casinos. My local casino charges more. The home games I go to charge nothing. If you have a stationary dealer, you'll have a lot of trouble getting on the right side of the law if you take any money, whether you say it's a rake, tips, for pizza, or for membership.

One particular game I heard of had membership fees and didn't get shut down, but the place was much more than a poker game and really stood on its own as a social club (reading room, chess and checkers games, bar, etc).

Cheating at your own game is never a good bet, and getting friends to help you out either requires too large a circle of friends and too much trust, or too small a circle and too much suspicion on the regular actors.
silverking
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BTW, most (if not all) jurisdictions do allow you to pay a dealer to deal your game.

But those same jurisdictions don't allow you to collect money directly from the players to pay that dealer (a rake).

The "no rake" thing is as tight as it is because it remains the fundamental test to determine between a friendly home game and an illegal poker club.
blackeagle
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Ok I understand. I would not need a ring of friends though, only one who could take down a few pots a night and dump a few small hands and that's it.

And charging 5 dollars for food would not be a legal issue because I am selling pizza and drinks. Then I wouldn't have any rake.
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