A game of Monopoly is a quick way to ruin holidays and open rifts between family members. After all that stress, the least you can do is walk away victorious. A bit of luck is required to win the famous property-buying board game, but with some clever strategies, you can greatly increase your chances of bankrupting the competition.

One of the most important rules to remember when playing Monopoly is to buy as much as possible, according to Thrillist. Don't save your cash for your favorite properties; there's no predicting who will land on what, and even if a property's value is low, it's still capable of earning you money and collecting rent from the other players. Toward the end of the game, having many cheap properties spread out across the board can be more lucrative than just having a monopoly on Park Place and Boardwalk, which are the two most expensive properties on the board.

If you can't break your stubborn spending habits, there's one set of properties worth the exception. The orange properties—New York Avenue, Tennessee Avenue, and St. James Place—may be the smartest real estate purchases you can make. They don't have the highest rents, but they are situated near highly-trafficked spots like Jail and the Electric Company. That means more people will be passing through your properties, driving more cash into your bank account in the long run.

The final bit of strategic advice applies to the later stages of the game. Once you've acquired a few monopolies, don't get ahead of yourself by buying hotels. You should stick with houses as long as you can. Only 32 house pieces come with each game, and one player can easily hoard them all, making it impossible for competitors to buy them. Without the minimum number of houses, players can't even skip to buying hotels, no matter how much money they have saved. It's a dirty way to win, but if you were looking for a tension-free game night, you wouldn't have picked Monopoly.

[h/t Thrillist]