Monopoly: Landing on Property
When the first dice roll hits the table, you are off to the races. Indeed, the first couple times around the board is a race to buy up property. You want to lay your hands on as much property as you can, even mortgage previously purchased property to do so. This is important as swapping deeds with your opponents is going to be a key factor in the next phase of the game.
All players begin the game at the corner square called "GO". In the order predetermined earlier a player rolls (not "throws" as some would have it) the dice and moves his or her token the required number of squares. It is okay to be on the same square as another player and doubles on the dice allows for an additional roll. However, three consecutive doubles lands the offending roller in jail.
When a player lands on a square, something generally happens as a result. If he or she lands on a property that is unowned it may be purchased. The prices of property on the Monopoly board generally increase as the player moves around the board. The $1500 each player begins with will go quite far in this regard as the prices range from a mere $60 to $400 (for Boardwalk). Remember too that, like a margin account on the stock market, a player may leverage his or her funds by borrowing, from the bank, 50% of the value of property already purchased. Thus, in theory, if one were to borrow and spend every possible dollar, each player has the potential of using $3000 (buy, borrow, buy and borrow again). You shouldn't take this as an exhortation to borrow carte bache. Just keep in mind that you have more resources than the pile of cash in front of you. The drawback of borrowing is that you may not collect rents on mortgaged property.
What happens if you decide not to buy an unowned property? Then it goes up for auction. Players bid on it and it goes to the highest bidder. It can easily be sold for more than its face value. Seldom should you allow this to happen, unless you believe it will allow you to scoop up the property on the cheap. Given the right situation, you might also get a player to pay far more for a piece of property than it is worth. All property is valuable, but some property is more valuable than others. The least desirable properties on the board are the utilities. Even with a Monopoly of the utilities the average rent will only be $70. (The average dice roll is a 7.)
The total face value of all the property on board is only $5690. You should have plenty of capital. Thus, the rule of thumb is buy, buy, buy whenever you can.