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Marijuana: Not all value it the same

Richard Mize
Richard Mize

Is marijuana good for the 'hood, or bad?

Your neighborhood, I mean. The one surrounded by dispensaries, I mean.

Property values, I mean.

Realtors have some answers, but who knows? Personally, I have never seen anything but anecdotal complaints of property values dropping because something moved into a neighborhood — unless it was a tornado.

(Come to think of it, anecdotally speaking, demand for places to build new after a tornado comes through can send lot prices as high as debris.)

The National Association of Realtors is out with a survey that showed mixed experiences — surprise! — by member Realtors who have sold homes in areas where marijuana dispensaries have popped up. They called the study "Marijuana and Real Estate: A Budding Issue."

Here some of what they found around residential deals:

• "While the majority of NAR members said they have not seen any changes in residential property values near dispensaries, between 7% and 12% answered that they have indeed seen an increase in values. Conversely, 8% to 27% said they have observed a decrease in residential property values near dispensaries."

What have you observed? What else, besides dispensaries, was in play?

• "The majority of respondents reported that homeowner associations have rules that place certain restrictions on smoking and growing marijuana in homes or common areas. Only around 3% answered that specific homeowner associations do allow growing or smoking in home or common areas."

This is something I haven't heard before. Are there any marijuana-restrictive HOAs here? I know there are rules against home-based businesses. And common areas are controlled spaces. But the NAR asked about HOA restrictions on marijuana use and growing in personal homes. Is that a thing?

• "Because marijuana is often an all-cash business, earnings from those who profit are frequently cash proceeds. About one-fifth to a quarter of landlords said they were unwilling to accept cash for rent in any instance, while about 10% said they will not take cash from an illegal federal activity for rent. Still, 42% of those in states where medical marijuana is legal answered that they would accept cash payments for rent. Among those renting where marijuana is legal for both prescription and recreational use, two-fifths said they would accept cash for rent."

Makes sense. Money talks.

• "About half of NAR members in states where medical marijuana is legal said they had no issues leasing a property after it was previously occupied by a tenant who legally grew marijuana. (Some 35%) to 49% of those in states where both medical and recreational marijuana are legal said they had no difficulty leasing the property to a new occupant. That said, the most common problem among these properties were lingering odors, followed by moisture issues. Both matters were more common in areas where recreational marijuana has been legal for a longer period of time."

No surprises there.

Surprises are out there, though. Realtors, do tell. I'd appreciate it.

Richard Mize

Real estate editor Richard Mize has edited The Oklahoman's weekly residential real estate section and covered housing, commercial real estate, construction, development, finance and related business since 1999. From 1989 to 1999, he worked... Read more ›

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