What real estate agents should know about pot legalization

  • Buyers or renters wanting to grow should look for enclosed windowless rooms, expanded electrical and plumbing, unfinished floors and more.
  • Find an inspector who's familiar with the signs of a grow operation.
  • So far, insurance carriers have been covering stolen plants or fires started. State laws could place parameters on that, though.

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An out-of-state client is seeking a home that's already set up for growing marijuana so that all he has to do is move in and get started. Meanwhile, a pregnant buyer is concerned about possible mold or contaminants resulting from growing pot indoors -- so she also wants to know what houses have hosted a grow space, but for different reasons. And it's a real estate agent's job to know how to cater to both of them. Legalizing pot for either medical or recreational use has implications far beyond getting high without fear of arrest by the local police. From homeowners' policies to rental agreements to how buyers shop and sellers price, there are consequences for the real estate industry, too. Once pot gets legalized, "people move in thinking they can do it wherever they want, however they want" -- and that's simply not true, notes Seattle attorney Hilary Bricken. What a 'good' grow house looks like... "Whether it’s for sale or for rent, properties that are ready to grow ...