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Old 03-26-2012, 01:05 AM   #1301
boltyou
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

Hey guys, I need a sanity check before going forward with my plan.

Recently, I got laid off from my job. Meh, happens. My wife's got a reasonable income, and we have insurance, and could probably live solely off her income, although it would take some lifestyle adjustments (her annual income is around $60k).

However, given that I don't plan to leech off her income for the rest of our lives, I'm thinking about playing poker full-time. However, having a wife and living expenses that would cover everything is a nice safety
net.

I've been playing $1/$2 for a while (about 500 hours) and my win rate is around 8bb/hr. Due to being busy with my previous job, I have been unable to play on any Friday or Saturday nights; all of this is weekday play.

However, when I've taken shots at $2/$5, I've found that:

1 - The worst players are still just as bad.
2 - The worst players are willing to buy in for full and have no problem losing their money; I've found that there's a lot less scared money by the fish. The scared money is usually at the $1/$2 tables.
3 - The best players are much, much better at $2/$5.
4 - The rake is the same at $2/$5.

I've been thinking of moving up to $2/$5 full-time, given the following assumptions:

$15k bankroll (30 buyins) is sufficient.

I can beat the $2/$5 for 5bb/hr, especially if I can play Friday/Saturdays, which I had not previously been able to do.

500 hours, while not a huge sample size, gives me a rough idea if I'm a winning or losing player, and adjusting downwards of 3bb/hr is a realistic adjustment.

I will not improve my win rate over time.

I've read every post in this thread and I've tried to get a sense of what people are making, it's hard to know how many hours people are playing per week and if I'm looking at the top 3% of winners. Few people are coming in and saying, "Well, I'm breaking even after two years of play," even though I'm pretty sure there are tons of those people out there, too.

Is this a pie-in-the-sky dream? I'm basically projecting my financial situation based on these assumptions. Right now, I'm playing poker while I look for another job so at the moment I'm not losing out on income while I look, but playing full-time is certainly very appealing to me. I'm trying to be conservative, while also being realistic (the last assumption that my win rate will not improve reflects that; hopefully I do improve, but I'm not even factoring that in. Any higher win rate would be a freeroll if I look at it this way).

If you think I'm being crazy/unrealistic about any of this, please let me know. I'm mostly worried about my sample size, honestly. 500 hours seems a bit low, but good god it's hard to beat that rake and I'd like to move out of the stakes where that's less of a factor if I'm rolled for it (which I think I am).
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:10 AM   #1302
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

You don't need 30 buy-ins, but what ever. Not a pipe dream, beating 2/5 for 5bb is a respectable rate. Depending on skill set you can increase to 10bb

Also depends on the max buy-in are you going to be buying max. I don't recommend anything but max- buy-ins
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:12 AM   #1303
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

2-5 ftw
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:14 AM   #1304
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

What about game selection? How many days are you going to play a week? How long are your sessions going to be?

Since your married it doesn't sound like you can play anytime of day/night you want. Be sure to plan out a schedule of days and hours.

As for beating the games. Its easy. 4 important factors on beating low stakes.

1)Be properly rolled

2)Session review.

3)Adjust to the table condition/players.

4)Have the passion to play long sessions 6+ hours.

Good luck, you should be fine.
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:18 AM   #1305
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

Bolt,

Don't do it. Seriously. Unless you absolutely hate your career don't ****ing do it.

Sincerely,
A married poker pro in his 6th year
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:22 AM   #1306
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

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Yeah... Click around the website
I must say that's the most time I have ever spent on somebody's personal website. Does he really ask every girl their SAT score?
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:26 AM   #1307
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Bolt,

Don't do it. Seriously. Unless you absolutely hate your career don't ****ing do it.

Sincerely,
A married poker pro in his 6th year
+1.

This world blows *****.
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:26 AM   #1308
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I must say that's the most time I have ever spent on somebody's personal website. Does he really ask every girl their SAT score?
Nerds gonna nerd
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:29 AM   #1309
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

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Originally Posted by ikestoys View Post
Bolt,

Don't do it. Seriously. Unless you absolutely hate your career don't ****ing do it.

Sincerely,
A married poker pro in his 6th year
Especially don't do it to be a 1/2 or maybe 2/5 "pro". That sounds so miserable. I think 5/10 is the first level that people should seriously consider forgoing other oppotunities to become a "pro"
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:33 AM   #1310
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

To the married poker players. Being a pro should be a wonderful feeling. Schedule your playing hours around your wife's work schedule: problem solved.

Rec players, tough luck.
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Old 03-26-2012, 02:34 AM   #1311
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I would make sure you first have the full support of your spouse. Also, do a weekly or bi-weekly stat chat with her making sure everything is on track.
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Old 03-26-2012, 02:43 AM   #1312
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I would make sure you first have the full support of your spouse. Also, do a weekly or bi-weekly stat chat with her making sure everything is on track.
That's too much information. It doesn't matter how smart his wife is. She won't get the variance of poker.

A Weekly book report is too much pressure on a marriage.
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Old 03-26-2012, 02:53 AM   #1313
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

The **** did I click on
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Old 03-26-2012, 03:03 AM   #1314
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Yeah, I mean there are a few things that are in place before doing this:

- My wife is 100% on board. She doesn't care what I do, as long as I'm happy, and she trusts that if I realize it's not a financially viable option, I'll stop and find something else. We don't have kids (and we 100% don't want them ever), so it's just me and her, which provides a lot more flexibility. Working around her work schedule is pretty easy. She and I are both pretty laid-back, easygoing people, and if we see each other and hang out, that's pretty sweet. But we have busy schedules and she's doing this or that and I'm frequently doing this or that and we always manage to make time for each other. I don't see this being any different.

She's the stone cold nuts, and there's no way I would ever make a lifestyle decision that involves me seeing her any less than I do now.

- If I find that I'm not happy doing it, I'll stop. I'm in my 30s now and I spent a good part of the last ten years wearing a suit and going to meetings and using expressions like "continuous business process improvement moving forward into the 21st century." I made a very good living in my field, but I despised it. I absolutely hated my job. It was completely soul-crushing.

- Money's not everything. If we don't have to worry about how we're going to pay our bills and have a little bit extra to save, that's enough for both of us. I'm done with the idea of moving up the corporate ladder to get paid larger and larger amounts of money. Making a lot of money is just not a consolation for me. I thought it would be, but after being put in that situation, I've realized that no, it's really really not.

So if I find poker to be soul-crushing, I'll find something else. I know a handful of people who have done it full-time, and the ones who love it continue to do it. The ones who don't stop. So far I've found it to be incredibly enjoyable. I've always loved (and have been good at) math and pattern-recognition, and the psychological aspect is fascinating to me. The marriage of math and psychology is so cool. I'm not going to continue with something I don't want to do. I've already been down that road.

Thanks for the advice. I really, really appreciate it. I'll take everything under consideration, and I don't make these types of decisions lightly.
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Old 03-26-2012, 03:13 AM   #1315
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

Sounds like you have the passion and the skill set. Nothing like playing cards for a living. I'm 3 years in, and I started in the middle of the recession.
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Old 03-26-2012, 03:53 AM   #1316
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

Quote:
Originally Posted by boltyou View Post
Yeah, I mean there are a few things that are in place before doing this:

- My wife is 100% on board. She doesn't care what I do, as long as I'm happy, and she trusts that if I realize it's not a financially viable option, I'll stop and find something else. We don't have kids (and we 100% don't want them ever), so it's just me and her, which provides a lot more flexibility. Working around her work schedule is pretty easy. She and I are both pretty laid-back, easygoing people, and if we see each other and hang out, that's pretty sweet. But we have busy schedules and she's doing this or that and I'm frequently doing this or that and we always manage to make time for each other. I don't see this being any different.

She's the stone cold nuts, and there's no way I would ever make a lifestyle decision that involves me seeing her any less than I do now.

- If I find that I'm not happy doing it, I'll stop. I'm in my 30s now and I spent a good part of the last ten years wearing a suit and going to meetings and using expressions like "continuous business process improvement moving forward into the 21st century." I made a very good living in my field, but I despised it. I absolutely hated my job. It was completely soul-crushing.

- Money's not everything. If we don't have to worry about how we're going to pay our bills and have a little bit extra to save, that's enough for both of us. I'm done with the idea of moving up the corporate ladder to get paid larger and larger amounts of money. Making a lot of money is just not a consolation for me. I thought it would be, but after being put in that situation, I've realized that no, it's really really not.

So if I find poker to be soul-crushing, I'll find something else. I know a handful of people who have done it full-time, and the ones who love it continue to do it. The ones who don't stop. So far I've found it to be incredibly enjoyable. I've always loved (and have been good at) math and pattern-recognition, and the psychological aspect is fascinating to me. The marriage of math and psychology is so cool. I'm not going to continue with something I don't want to do. I've already been down that road.

Thanks for the advice. I really, really appreciate it. I'll take everything under consideration, and I don't make these types of decisions lightly.
I recently parted ways with my job.

I was an Internet Sales Manager for Ford. Actually one of the top ones in the United States. However, the lack of customer communication/just sitting back behind a computer all day setting up car deals was boring to me. I was topped out at around 70k a year income and had to deal with the daily grind of working at a car dealership for 50 hours a week. I just couldn't take it anymore by the time I was done.

I'm 30, have a nice chunk of change in stock market/in bank and decided to take a shot as well. I started out at $2/$5, did well here in Detroit, and then went to Vegas and got my ass handed to me over the course of 3 weeks. It wasn't until then that I ever got a taste of losing $6,000 in a month. That was tough for me. I hate losing at anything I do. I scaled back down to $1/$2 and over the course of the last 60 days I've won the $$$ I lost in Vegas back here in Detroit. I give credit to all the people here who post hand history/comment here in helping me do that. I learned more from this site in a month than I did from 10 years of just playing 3-4 times a month and reading a few dated books like Super System or How to Play Poker Like The Pros (I mean NIT)....I've never claimed to be the smartest, but if you provide me with useful information/strategy/an outline as to how to do something well.. I will sponge it right up and apply it... quickly, which I have...

I am getting ready to move back up to the $2/$5 game. First on weekends and then full time. I'm going to give it a real shot for 90-120 days then see where I am at. If I can't get to at least a 50k a year income from cards, I'll look to get back in the auto industry.

It sounds like you have the right attitude, smarts, skill set, and plan.

If it doesn't work out right away, keep grinding at it, and don't ever think you have this game figured out... keep coming back here and evolving as a player... so much good information at your disposal for free!!!

GOOD LUCK!!!
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Old 03-26-2012, 05:24 AM   #1317
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

good luck bolt.

if i lost my job, i'd be happy to take a shot playing poker for a living. but i'd want to be collecting the unemployment for the first 3-6 months to make sure i could get it done.

i like your plan. look for a job while playing cards. it allows you to be picky in what job you take. maybe you'll find something that really can make you happy and you can continue poker on the side.
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Old 03-26-2012, 05:54 AM   #1318
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

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Especially don't do it to be a 1/2 or maybe 2/5 "pro". That sounds so miserable. I think 5/10 is the first level that people should seriously consider forgoing other oppotunities to become a "pro"
What are his other opportunities? The man said he was laid off.

But you're so right about 2/5 pros. Having to play a card game for a living, while making a paltry $50/hr...it's such a miserable life. I wish I had a job where I could wake up early in the morning every Monday to Friday, punch a clock, and be told what to do by some moron in a suit.
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Old 03-26-2012, 06:07 AM   #1319
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

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Yeah, I mean there are a few things that are in place before doing this:

- My wife is 100% on board. She doesn't care what I do, as long as I'm happy, and she trusts that if I realize it's not a financially viable option, I'll stop and find something else. We don't have kids (and we 100% don't want them ever), so it's just me and her, which provides a lot more flexibility. Working around her work schedule is pretty easy. She and I are both pretty laid-back, easygoing people, and if we see each other and hang out, that's pretty sweet. But we have busy schedules and she's doing this or that and I'm frequently doing this or that and we always manage to make time for each other. I don't see this being any different.

She's the stone cold nuts, and there's no way I would ever make a lifestyle decision that involves me seeing her any less than I do now.

- If I find that I'm not happy doing it, I'll stop. I'm in my 30s now and I spent a good part of the last ten years wearing a suit and going to meetings and using expressions like "continuous business process improvement moving forward into the 21st century." I made a very good living in my field, but I despised it. I absolutely hated my job. It was completely soul-crushing.

- Money's not everything. If we don't have to worry about how we're going to pay our bills and have a little bit extra to save, that's enough for both of us. I'm done with the idea of moving up the corporate ladder to get paid larger and larger amounts of money. Making a lot of money is just not a consolation for me. I thought it would be, but after being put in that situation, I've realized that no, it's really really not.

So if I find poker to be soul-crushing, I'll find something else. I know a handful of people who have done it full-time, and the ones who love it continue to do it. The ones who don't stop. So far I've found it to be incredibly enjoyable. I've always loved (and have been good at) math and pattern-recognition, and the psychological aspect is fascinating to me. The marriage of math and psychology is so cool. I'm not going to continue with something I don't want to do. I've already been down that road.

Thanks for the advice. I really, really appreciate it. I'll take everything under consideration, and I don't make these types of decisions lightly.
I'm five years in and I still find it enjoyable, and vastly superior to any job I ever had. I mean, of course it's enjoyable--I'm playing a game and winning money, and I'm my own boss.
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Old 03-26-2012, 06:24 AM   #1320
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

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What are his other opportunities? The man said he was laid off.

But you're so right about 2/5 pros. Having to play a card game for a living, while making a paltry $50/hr...it's such a miserable life. I wish I had a job where I could wake up early in the morning every Monday to Friday, punch a clock, and be told what to do by some moron in a suit.
I never experienced the "being told what to do by some moron in a suit," thing thankfully. I was the one wearing the suit and I told people what to do...

...oh, son of a *****.
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:01 AM   #1321
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

That's some really crazy std. deviation bro. I have $132 of std. dev. in 800 hours. And I've been playing 2/5 and PLO the last 2 months.
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:16 AM   #1322
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What are his other opportunities? The man said he was laid off.

But you're so right about 2/5 pros. Having to play a card game for a living, while making a paltry $50/hr...it's such a miserable life. I wish I had a job where I could wake up early in the morning every Monday to Friday, punch a clock, and be told what to do by some moron in a suit.
Fewer than 1% of people that play 2/5 make anywhere near that much. And obviously by playing poker he will forgo other potential jobs. Unless he has no prospect of being hired somewhere else he's obviously giving up other opportunities.

And you have to discount any earnings a "pro" makes for loss of healthcare benefits etc. Not sure if he would get coverage from his wife though.
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:18 AM   #1323
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

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Fewer than 1% of people that play 2/5 make anywhere near that much. And obviously by playing poker he will forgo other potential jobs. Unless he has no prospect of being hired somewhere else he's obviously giving up other opportunities.

And you have to discount any earnings a "pro" makes for loss of healthcare benefits etc. Not sure if he would get coverage from his wife though.
it's important to note that you can't put a pricetag on being happy.

i have an outstanding job (salary-wise) that i absolutely cannot stand. if i were to play poker i'd be making a fraction of what i make now but i'd be exponentially happier.

dont know if i would ever be able to pull the trigger on becoming a full time player but i support those who follow their dreams.
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:20 AM   #1324
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Of course you can't. And the guy that posted it seems to be in a unique situation and maybe its not such a bad idea for him. I was just reacting to what seems like everyone who has beaten 1/2 for 100 hours has decided its a good idea to be a "pro"
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:39 AM   #1325
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re: Winrates, bankrolls, and finances

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it's important to note that you can't put a pricetag on being happy.

i have an outstanding job (salary-wise) that i absolutely cannot stand. if i were to play poker i'd be making a fraction of what i make now but i'd be exponentially happier.

dont know if i would ever be able to pull the trigger on becoming a full time player but i support those who follow their dreams.
It's more less a dream with a lot of recurring nightmares.
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