How do you guy manage the bank?

ArielVer18

Two Pair
Joined
Feb 23, 2018
Messages
301
Reaction score
297
Location
Oakland, CA
I have a pretty much bulletproof banking policy: must pay cash for chips. Every player gives me cash for chips, and when they cash out, they give me back the chips for cash. Every chip on the table is covered by cash. At the end of the night, the bank is almost never over or short.

If a player runs out of cash but wants to keep playing, he can venmo/zelle/cashapp/etc someone who does have cash, then hand the cash to me for chips. That person might even be me. The cashless player can, for example, Venmo me $60. Then I take $60 cash from my wallet, put it inside the rubber band holding the game's bank, and finally give the player $60 worth of chips.

However, lately, more and more of my friends don't carry cash anymore. I hosted a game recently where no one, except for me and two other players, had cash. This resulted in dozens of Venmo transactions of one buy-in each. I felt it was unnecessarily complicated.

I've been to completely cashless games where buyins are recorded on a ledger. At the end of the night, the ledger is settled in as few transactions as possible (which is usually losers pay the biggest winner and the biggest winner pays the other winners). I'm hesitate to use this gentleman's agreement cashless style for my own game. While it sounds convenient, who takes responsibility if something goes wrong? For example, what if a malicious player used a stolen credit card to pay the biggest winner and Venmo reverses the transaction?

How do everyone else handle the buying in cashing out aspect in a home game?
 

Payback

Full House
Moderator
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 28, 2013
Messages
3,676
Reaction score
5,639
Location
Memphis, TN
When I hosted I pretty much did what you have laid out. Very rarely did I ever have a banking error, but that's also in part because lots of the players were also hosts so we tended to watch out for each lther as well.

Sounds like the stakes aren't that big (My guess is around a $1k bank, maybe less), which means that people should be bringing enough cash for two or three buy ins. The fact that people arent coming to games without enough cash at those stakes might be a sign that the games might not be "healthy".

If buy ins were larger $500+, then I understand the need/want to go a more cashless route.
 

tabletalker7

Flush
Joined
Aug 8, 2019
Messages
2,325
Reaction score
3,214
Location
Buffalo NY
If someone comes to one of my games without cash, I send them to the gas station two blocks away - they have an ATM. I refuse to deal in anything other than cash. Home poker is not legal in all jurisdictions, and using any one of these apps means a bank somewhere has to run these transactions. The less outsiders know about your dealings, the better.
 

Coyote

4 of a Kind
Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2018
Messages
5,112
Reaction score
7,282
Location
Athens, Greece
Cash and only cash. Even perfectly legal casinos here accept only cash.
As a host, I have given 30-minute loans (the duration of the trip to the closest ATM and back) at no interest rate:D.
Anyway, players are informed about the stakes, max 120BB or -rarely- absolute max 150BB buy-in, no straddles, no surprises.
 

StevieG

Pair
Joined
May 19, 2020
Messages
132
Reaction score
175
Location
Baltimore MD
This is largely a generational thing. I'm a middle-aged guy, as are most of our players, and everyone has cash, always.

But I get that some do not. And I would have no problems as a host giving chips for Venmo or PayPal, or whatever, or even just writing up a marker* and settling it up at the end of the night the same way.

And of course, these days playing online we are completely settling up through electronic exchanges.

* - only known players would warrant a marker, but in our case it is almost exclusively regulars - we've been playing together a decade
 

Rhodeman77

4 of a Kind
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 11, 2014
Messages
7,106
Reaction score
16,088
Location
Cleveland
I have a few people that don’t bring cash and I let them settle up at the end up the game by whatever electronic transaction they want. I keep enough cash on hand to cover whatever amount I lend out. I use my phone to keep track of the IOU.

For newer players that I don’t know that well I have them send the money first until they have established themselves in the game.

I’ve never had anyone not pay me back, just a few to take a few weeks/months.
 

Frogzilla

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2017
Messages
2,826
Reaction score
4,008
Location
Frisco, TX
Ok so this only works with friends because it’s not that hard to “misplace” your marker. But I hand someone this marker below... this means in for $100. You have 4 white fat hats in your stack, you’re in for $400. End of the night we just settle up ok you’ve got 3 markers and $250 in chips... you owe $50.
 

Attachments

  • image.jpg
    image.jpg
    67.9 KB · Views: 117

ATLarchip

Two Pair
Joined
Jun 22, 2018
Messages
422
Reaction score
522
Location
Atlanta
I have a pretty much bulletproof banking policy: must pay cash for chips. Every player gives me cash for chips, and when they cash out, they give me back the chips for cash. Every chip on the table is covered by cash. At the end of the night, the bank is almost never over or short.

I pretty much do what you stated, except replace cash with Venmo.
 

warma

Straight
Supporting Member
Joined
Dec 14, 2019
Messages
905
Reaction score
793
Location
DC
I’m tempted to use Apple Pay Cash. Send me the buy-in, I send out the winnings. No change making.
 

ArielVer18

Two Pair
Joined
Feb 23, 2018
Messages
301
Reaction score
297
Location
Oakland, CA
Sounds like the stakes aren't that big (My guess is around a $1k bank, maybe less), which means that people should be bringing enough cash for two or three buy ins. The fact that people arent coming to games without enough cash at those stakes might be a sign that the games might not be "healthy".
To clarify, players aren't coming to the game with enough cash because their opinion is that it's inconvenience to go get cash, not because they're broke. Personally, outside of gambling, I use my credit card for everything. Gotta rack up those sweet CC points.


Ok so this only works with friends because it’s not that hard to “misplace” your marker. But I hand someone this marker below... this means in for $100. You have 4 white fat hats in your stack, you’re in for $400. End of the night we just settle up ok you’ve got 3 markers and $250 in chips... you owe $50.
This sounds cool. However, wouldn't a pen and paper accomplish the same thing? This is just a fancier version of writing down an IOU on a piece of paper, right?
 

BrightlyDumb

Sitting Out
Joined
Jun 5, 2020
Messages
37
Reaction score
56
Location
Colorado
I've run games in cash-only formats, and that's always been successful for me and the players. However, I've been to games where there is a mix of Venmo and cash, and to me it seems reliable enough from a transaction standpoint. I will say that traceability of that transaction is something I don't personally want to be involved in - for my home games, I don't want to create a series of transactions that exceed $10K that might raise the wrong kind of attention.

I do agree that etransfers will become more prevalent, and apparently even the LV casinos are discussing how to do that instead of markers or cash.
 

Eloe2000

4 of a Kind
Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2019
Messages
5,327
Reaction score
12,215
Location
Casa Mango, FL
Cash only. Our regulars range from 22 to 55 years old. Most are around 40. People are allowed to PayPal or Venmo each other for cash to give to the bank, but no one gets chips without cash first. Sometimes guys go on credit to each other, but never to the bank.The younger guys had a hard time at first but they get it now.

Paypal or Venmo etc upfront could become a thing too. I could see that happening. It depends on your state laws and how close you like to fly to the sun.
 

Payback

Full House
Moderator
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 28, 2013
Messages
3,676
Reaction score
5,639
Location
Memphis, TN
To clarify, players aren't coming to the game with enough cash because their opinion is that it's inconvenience to go get cash, not because they're broke. Personally, outside of gambling, I use my credit card for everything. Gotta rack up those sweet CC points.



This sounds cool. However, wouldn't a pen and paper accomplish the same thing? This is just a fancier version of writing down an IOU on a piece of paper, right?

I'm a points and miles travel blogger I know all about points and their value.

I just start telling people to bring 2 buyins in cash and anything after can be electronic. ATMs are everywhere so there is not excuse not to show up with some cash. Unless your good with electronic transfers,but I'm guessing since you've made this thread you'd like more cash in the bank. Or you could charge a small fee to change over Venmo payments to cash for the inconvenience, but then you start getthy into legal gray areas.
 

trigs

Straight
Joined
Sep 29, 2017
Messages
940
Reaction score
1,048
Location
Canada
I've taken etransfers before but it's not the norm. I'm okay with doing it occasionally but most guys bring cash, usually 3 buy-ins minimum I'd think. I wouldn't feel comfortable doing it all or even majority electronically.

When I have done etransfers I'll add the money so it's all physically accounted for.
 

Goldfish

Flush
Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2020
Messages
1,629
Reaction score
3,628
Location
Maryland
when I hosted I found that constant transactions throughout the night were a pain in the butt because I would get distracted from playing and provided a real potential for the bank being off at the end of the night. if the bank is off it is generally on the host.

For that reason, I migrated to the bag system which in my opinion is the best banking system - at the beginning of the game I hand u a bag with xxx amount (Say 5-10 buy ins - u pick). At the end of the night u r responsible for paying the difference between ur chip amount and the initial amount of the bag. if ur a winner u give me ur bag and ur up chips. For Any rebuys I give out higher denomination chips not yet circulated Making it easy to confirm how many rebuys there were. There r Very few banking transactions during the course of the night. The bank is never off. And I can concentrate on my game. Also, because a finite amount of chips go out to players in the beginning I know exactly how many chips went out and I can quickly make sure all chips are accounted for At the end of the night. If u r playing a game of any decent size (1/2 and above), the bag system is the best Way to go.

I only hosted a very close group. if u were new, someone in the game had vouched for u And was responsible for that persons debt. As a host, I didn't want cash at my game. Electronic transfers are the way to go. Very easy And I think safer. My game was pretty low key but anyone that did know about it knew there was no cash.
 

AWenger

Flush
Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2014
Messages
2,082
Reaction score
2,674
Location
Washington DC
This sounds cool. However, wouldn't a pen and paper accomplish the same thing? This is just a fancier version of writing down an IOU on a piece of paper, right?
Of course. But this is Poker Chip Forum, so any excuse or reason to buy special, oversized, chips and put them to use can and will be justified by members here! Ingenious! :)
 
Joined
Nov 21, 2016
Messages
104
Reaction score
198
Location
Austin
We go straight cash. I will carry a marker because I only have people I trust. Most players bring enough cash to go deep and will also offer cash for Venmo transfer or someone will usually spot them. Last week we had a player go through two $300 buy ins, then borrowed $700 from me, and also $1K from another player. He came storming back and paid all markers at the end of the night. We play a crazy game, lol.
 

Dodger

Straight
Joined
Jun 15, 2018
Messages
903
Reaction score
1,549
Location
Upper Left
Cash for chips. No loans from the bank, but players are more than welcome to borrow from each other. At the end of the night, I want players to leave with 100% of what they cash out for. Player-to-player loans are strictly between those players.
 

StevieG

Pair
Joined
May 19, 2020
Messages
132
Reaction score
175
Location
Baltimore MD
At the end of the night, I want players to leave with 100% of what they cash out for.

Absolutely. That's what players expect and respect.

Last week we had a player go through two $300 buy ins, then borrowed $700 from me, and also $1K from another player. He came storming back and paid all markers at the end of the night.

@Sea Vulture your game sounds wild. Love it.

when I hosted I found that constant transactions throughout the night were a pain in the butt because I would get distracted from playing and provided a real potential for the bank being off at the end of the night. if the bank is off it is generally on the host.

For that reason, I migrated to the bag system which in my opinion is the best banking system - at the beginning of the game I hand u a bag with xxx amount (Say 5-10 buy ins - u pick).

I work similar in that there are racks in our standard buy-in amount prepared to make it very easy to cash players in. But I would really prefer cash up front (or a clear marker) to avoid any misunderstanding late in the night after everyone has been drinking.

As a host, I didn't want cash at my game. Electronic transfers are the way to go. Very easy And I think safer.

That's a really good thought. Clear audit trail too when there is a question of whether the exchange happened.

There is something about going late in the night, though, as players rebuy and bills start to appear on the table, and then in the pots. It's like a third act of a play.

I would miss that aspect.
 

surfik

Flush
Joined
Jun 10, 2016
Messages
1,970
Reaction score
1,126
Location
Poland
Introduce cash only policy. If the player does not want to carry cash he may transfer money before game.
 

Gobbs

3 of a Kind
Joined
Aug 26, 2017
Messages
659
Reaction score
665
Location
Atlanta
How lazy are people that they can't stop by an ATM on the way? I get that people deal with Venmo and PayPal these days and don't carry cash, but it sounds quite rude to know the cash-only policy and not bother to get cash. Every once in a while, somebody can forget to stop and I understand that, but consistently not bringing cash is simply rude when they know you require it for chips.
 

Eriks

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2018
Messages
2,798
Reaction score
4,764
Location
Sweden
I hate to handle cash and never pay anything cash. We use the Swedish equivalent of venmo
 
Joined
Aug 4, 2015
Messages
4,003
Reaction score
8,779
Location
Fredericksburg, VA
Cash

+

"The Plate"

I generally play with VERY close friends that me and my peeps happily lend money to. We call borrowing "going on the plate!" I put their name on a paper plate along with a running tally of the amount owed. They do not borrow from me (unless I am the big winner). If they end negative for the night, they owe the big winner/s. The amount can be quite substantial at times, and everybody I play with has agreed to using the plate.
 

StevieG

Pair
Joined
May 19, 2020
Messages
132
Reaction score
175
Location
Baltimore MD
Why is the the hosts job? Serious question.

In short, morals and pragmatism.

In terms of morals, I would feel the same about enabling irresponsible levels of play as I would serving a guest alcohol at my house and allowing them to drive home in an incapacitated state.

I think for the vast majority of home games and levels of play this never comes up.

But there are those whose games run deep, and they sometimes may attract players that like the action, but the level of play is above what their disposable income allows. And again, although the vast majority of players can manage gaming as a diversion, there are those who are going to feel compelled. Adding credit as another ingredient there presents a moral dilemma for many.

Now, even if you do not feel that to be a moral issue, and you want to ascribe that responsibility to the players alone, there is still the pragmatic aspect.

If you start extending credit to losers, you will soon find yourself not in the hosting business, but in the lending business.

I want no part of that. Simply pragmatic.
 

Highli99

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 6, 2018
Messages
4,310
Reaction score
8,190
Location
Maryland
Why is the the hosts job? Serious question.

I don't think it's the host's job. I think everyone has to make personal decisions. Adults can choose how to spend their money and it's not my place to judge.

Choosing to loan another player money is also a personal decision. I simply find that the cash people bring to a game is a good proxy for what they are prepared to lose. My decision not to lend is less about the confidence i'll be repaid or the hassle of chasing down debt, and more about me not wanting to enable someone to overextend. I do not care is someone else loans money to another player. That's their personal decision.
 
Top Bottom