Poker Bankroll Management
Poker Bankroll Management (BRM) is one of the fundamentals to be a successful poker player. It will help you to make sure you don’t lose the whole bankroll if things don’t always go well due to variance.
Your Poker Bankroll is the money you’ve got available for playing poker. The Poker Bankroll must be separate from your other finances, so you can be sure that you always have enough money for your life, even if you lose. Good Bankroll Management also means choosing the right stakes, so you can easily survive a bad run.
You can choose to cash out a fixed amount every month, but your chances to lose your complete bankroll increases by doing so. Some also decide to invest a monthly amount in their poker bankroll.
A proper BRM can help you fundamentally to improve your game and move up stakes.
Moving up stakes in Cash Games
Let’s say you start with 100 Buy-ins (BI) playing Cash Games NLH €5/10. If you want to move up stakes you should have at least 200 BI before moving up to €10/20. That way you’ll have again 100 BI for the new stakes.
This process can be very time-consuming. In case your win rate is high, you can take a shot at the next stakes level before reaching the 200 BI. A shot-taking can use, for example, 10-15 buy-ins. If that shot was successful, you can stay at the next stake level. If not, you stay at your current level until you’re ready to move up.
Drop Down in Stakes when necessary
If you keep losing at your current stakes level, drop down in stakes. There can always be a downswing and sometimes that can even affect your game in a negative way. Going down in stakes isn’t a shame and gives you the chance to improve your game without getting broke.
The variance is a lot higher when playing tournaments. That’s why you need to be careful not to spend more than 2% or less of your bankroll for each tournament. If you’re re-buying, you need to make sure you don’t spend more than 5% of your bankroll in total.
For example, if your bankroll is €10,000 you should choose tournaments with a buy-in of max. €200 or less. If this tournament is a rebuy-tournament, you can afford one rebuy.
Keeping track of your bankroll in live games can be a bit of a hassle, but it is very important to take notes of your buy-ins, wins and losses. An App can help you to keep track more easily and they also offer great graphs and stats to help you to better understand your performance. There are several good Apps available for Android, iOS and Windows.
How big your Poker Bankroll should be will depend largely on what you play and on your win rate. The charts below are for your orientation. We focus on Tournaments and Full Ring Cash games as this is what you’ll find at King’s.
Poker Bankroll Management Chart