Regulations

Property search engine will serve budding pot industry

HerbFront will help landlords market properties that meet local zoning requirements

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A new startup has ambitions of becoming the Zillow of property search for marijuana growers and landlords who are willing to rent their properties to people in the budding industry. The new service, HerbFront, will offer zoning maps to identify areas that are legal for farming marijuana, warehousing and retail services. Tight zoning regulations that rule out locations near schools, parks and other facilities mean 95 percent of properties can't host pot-related businesses, HerbFront founder Matt Chapdelaine tells Crain's Chicago Business. HerbFront will deliver “verified property reports” to help landlords “boost their listings” by confirming that properties meet local zoning laws, along with custom zoning maps and market forecasts. After enrollment kicks off Feb. 1, HerbFront will charge landlords and property owners $50 per listing. It will charge users who want to search for properties $100 a month. Access to maps and market research will cost $1,000 a month. The...