House Rules






Poker Nights - Betting Rules


      This is perhaps the greatest area of variation between different poker nights, poker styles, and poker players.  These rules are for a cash game, not a no-limit buy-in tournament.  I suggest these rules as the best balance between the easiest (for new players) and most satisfying (for experienced players) styles available.  Heeeeere we go:

  • Buy Whatever - In this system there is not a set buy-in amount.  Players can buy any amount of chips they wish at any time, including in the middle of a hand.  However, there is no "all-in" protection;  if someone raises you more than the amount of chips you have left, you either have to buy more chips or fold.  (This is balanced out by a "raise limit," so things don't get out of control!)


  • Ante - This system uses antes rather than posting blinds.  This is necessary because the game changes with every dealer, and all games aren't created equal!  The ante on my system is 25 cents.


  • Raise Limit - This is how we keep things from getting out of control!  The maximum amount any player can raise the previous bet is, for example two dollars.  For example, player A bets 50 cents, player B raises the max $2.00 to a total of $2.50.  Player C can raise that $2.00 to a total of $4.50.  This system is balanced because it allows players to keep raising each other if they want;  however, a player can't be bullied with too much money.  Long story short:  it works!


  • Example Buy-Ins - This is how things usually work at my poker nights:
            - White chips are $0.25; a stack of 10 is $2.50
            - Red chips are $0.50; a stack of 10 is $5.00
            - Black chips are $1.00; a stack of 10 is $10.00
    - People usually buy $10.00 (2 stacks of white, 1 stack of red) or $20.00
            (2 stacks white, 1 stack red, 1 stack Black).
    - Ante is $0.25
    - Maximum raise is $2.00
    - People end up winning or losing at most $20 over the course of the night


  • Stakes - Just a quick word of advice on what to set the stakes at for poker:  START LOW!  At the end of the day, it's about how well you did compared to everyone else;  $2.00 can feel like a lot of money in a poker night like this, and then it's safe for everyone.  Don't start out with $5.00 antes and $20.00 max raises just for the thrill of it - if you start low, it's exciting anyway!  It's all in good fun, right?  Right.



Now that you know how to bet, you just need to know what wins!  Check out the Hands...