Guide to Bank Money in Monopoly

How Money Is Managed in Monopoly

stack of Monopoly money

The Spruce / Margot Cavin 

You'll start off with $1,500 playing Monopoly or $31 playing Junior Monopoly but what happens to that amount of money is a matter of chance and choices you make along the way. Whether you love the game or not, Monopoly has become so much a part of the culture that when someone uses the terms "Monopoly money," "land on free parking" or "get out of jail free card," everyone knows what the speaker is alluding to. The game has become a standby on family holidays and rainy Saturday afternoons. Read on to find out more information about Monopoly's timeless money system.

About Monopoly

Monopoly was put out in its current form by Parker Brothers in 1935, which accounts for the apparel of the various figures depicted in the game and the design of the game as a whole. Monopoly is a literal depiction of the idea that the rich get richer and the poor get poorer: the more money you have, the more property and houses and hotels you can buy, and then the more rent you can collect. A monopoly is, of course, a situation where there is only one seller or provider who has no competition for his goods or services. The winner of the game thus has a monopoly of all the property (and the money) in the end.

One of the things that bring a unique kitschiness to Monopoly is the special edition branding of the game. You can find special editions of the game for almost any fandom imaginable. There are over a thousand different special editions of Monopoly. Special editions are usually made to match things like TV shows, games or bands so the pieces will all be made to match the particular theme of the game. 

Managing Monopoly Money

The game of Monopoly revolves around money which flows out of and into a central bank. There are specific rules about exactly how much money the bank and each player has at the start of the game, and what to do if, for example, the bank runs out of money.

Money each player starts with

The Spruce / Vin Ganapathy

Monopoly Money

Monopoly money consists of 20 orange $500 bills, 20 beige $100 bills, 30 blue $50 bills, 50 green $20 bills, 40 yellow $10 bills, 40 pink $5 bills, and 40 white $1 bills.

money by denomination
The Spruce / Margot Cavin 

Money in the Bank

In pre-2008 Monopoly games, the bank starts with $15,140 in cash. In games made after September 2008, the bank has $20,580, accounting for inflation, of course. A few of the bills are a different color: $10s are blue, $20s get a brighter green hue, and $50s are purple. Also, there are 30 of each denomination rather than varying numbers of each one.

Amount of Money Each Player Starts With

In Monopoly, each player starts the game with $1,500. Here is the breakdown of how much money each player gets:

  • Two $500s
  • Two $100s
  • Two $50s
  • Six $20s
  • Five $10s
  • Five $5s
  • Five $1s

The remaining bills go to the bank. One player serves as the banker and is in charge of dividing up money and collecting fees. At the start of the game, the bank holds all 32 houses and 12 motels.

amount of money each player starts with
The Spruce / Margot Cavin  

Extra Money in the Bank

If the bank repeatedly runs out of money when you play, which is more likely if you play with several people, you can add as much as you want. Make your own out of paper or use checkers or poker chips to indicate different amounts. Or if you want it all to be real Monopoly money, you can buy more in a toy or hobby store or order it online. The Monopoly bank never goes belly-up.

using marbles as currency in monopoly
The Spruce / Margot Cavin