How Marijuana Legalization Affected the Real Estate Market

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The legalization of cannabis in select states has created a new demand for homes and residences. With criminal penalties removed from the recreational use of marijuana in a private setting, people are flocking to those states to enjoy a lifestyle now open to them.

These bold states are experiencing a real estate boom like no other. Not only are people in a hurry to settle down in these states, but businesses are also quick to put down stakes and go into the canna-business.

Is it too late to get into the real estate market? On the contrary, there may never be a better time to settle your roots in a state that welcomes those who embrace a rather “green” lifestyle.

Why marijuana legalization is creating a real estate boom?

Considered a taboo subject at the turn of the 20th Century, public opinion on marijuana use (both medically and recreationally) has drastically changed. According to a 2019 study by Pew Research Center, two out of three Americans support the legalization of marijuana.

Despite this, only ten states have completely legalized the use of marijuana: California, Colorado, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington. An additional 18 states have legalized marijuana use for medical purposes, while all but three states have legalized limited-THC content marijuana for medical use.

However, the real estate boom is apparently clear in the ten states that have completely legalized marijuana. Not only do those seeking a different quality of life want to move there, but businesses are moving in to answer consumer demand. Farms, processing centers, and dispensaries are opening at an increased rate to provide the public with what they want.

But direct marijuana use isn’t the only reason real estate is in high demand. Distilleries producing full-spectrum CBD are also opening a business in these states. For years, peer-reviewed studies have suggested cannabinoids could be beneficial. As a result, high-quality, full-spectrum CBD oil is available for the first time on the broad market thanks to marijuana legalization laws.


Marijuana legalization in the homeowner marketplace

The obvious connection to the real estate boom comes from the homeowner and consumer marketplace. With legal, regulated dispensaries opening and operating under state law, home prices are climbing with consumer demand.

But can we directly link the rising price and demand for homes and apartments to marijuana legalization? A 2018 study published in Contemporary Economic Policy suggests there is a correlation. Studying home prices in Denver, Colorado, research uncovered when a new dispensary opened, home prices increased by 7.7% on average. And for those homes that were further away, while the price didn’t go up immediately, home prices slowly rose over time.

The relationship is clearly demonstrated. As marijuana continues to get legalized, it creates a positive effect for new home builds, current homeowners, and those who want to get into the real estate market in these states.

Marijuana legalization on the industrial marketplace

While home prices have increased with the opening of marijuana dispensaries, industrial property demand is also skyrocketing. In order to satiate the appetite for marijuana, cannabis-based products, and full spectrum CBD oil, new farms, and processing centers are opening, with more than enough manpower to join the business ventures.

The industrial real estate demand has been well documented, dating back to when the first states legalized marijuana for adult consumption. A 2017 article in The New York Times summed up how new businesses are demanding space: “In the more than two dozen states that have moved to legalize pot, factories, warehouses, and self-storage facilities are being repurposed for the cultivation and processing of potent marijuana plants and products.”

Once again, a correlation can be drawn between states that legalize marijuana and demand for industrial space. According to a 2018 study completed by the National Association of Realtors, over one-third of members reported increased demand in warehouses, while 31 percent said they had increased demand for storefronts. Farmland isn’t immune to this trend: nearly one in five National Association of Realtors members said they saw an increased demand for open land.

Is it too late to join the marijuana real estate boom?

As the markets continue to heat up and demand grows, there’s never been a better time to join the marijuana real estate boom. With changing laws and regulations opening up to encourage business growth, the demand for real estate will only continue to climb.

However, there are many things to consider before investing in the space. With the National Association of Realtors reporting a slight perceived uptick in crime near dispensaries and personal marijuana growing creating new problems for homeowners and landlords, any new investors should consider the legal ramifications and potential value increase before purchasing any property. Investments may lose value, so it’s important to consult a realtor and attorney before putting any money down.

Mimi Foster
Falcon Property Company - Colorado Springs, CO
Voted Colorado Springs Best Realtor

I wrote about this many years ago when Colorado legalized Medical MMJ (before they followed with recreational). It has been a boon to the economy, that's for sure, but arguable among many on what it's doing with the influx of people. Great first blog post. Welcome to ActiveRain!

Dec 19, 2019 08:48 PM
James Dray
Fathom Realty - Bentonville, AR

Morning Sean.

My State just legalized medical use, I'm sure it won't be long before recreational use is legal.

Dec 22, 2019 01:15 AM
Mel Ahrens, MBA, Kelly Right Real Estate
Kelly Right Real Estate - Hood River, OR
Customized Choices for your Real Estate Needs

 Welcome to Active Rain, a great place to learn, share, and network. It is a growing industry (bad pun). One concern I have heard from bankers, investors, and buyers is the uncertainty with federal banking regulations. Buyers are not able to get a loan on a property if the funds are a result of state legal but federally prohibited marijuana economic activity. 

Dec 22, 2019 02:09 AM
Sean Hakes

You're right - glad to meet you! Also, I've heard that if the water source used has any ties to federal funding that that water is technically illegal to use. Something interesting I'm hoping to explore in the coming weeks. Thanks for the comment!

Dec 22, 2019 12:03 PM
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Sean Hakes welcome to ActiveRain, and congratulations on successfully posting your first blog on this site.

Dec 27, 2019 02:55 PM
Debra Leisek
Bay Realty,Inc Homer Alaska - Homer, AK

I think you forgot Alaska!  Welcome to Active Rain! Very interesting and well written first post!!!

Jan 20, 2020 01:05 AM
Bob Crane
Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, KW Diversified - Stevens Point, WI
Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671

Welcome to Active Rain, looking forward to reading many more of your posts, let me know if there is anything that I can do to help as you get started here.
All the best of success to you.

Feb 16, 2020 05:54 PM
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

The time has come to eliminate the confusion of having different laws in each State . I can only imagine the trouble it causes .

Oct 14, 2020 04:42 AM
Ervin Smith

I am sure that there are much more benefits of using cbd oils and other cbd products than it says here.

Nov 04, 2021 01:22 AM
Henry Grey

Actually, I'm very glad that we are gradually coming to the legalization of marijuana, because compared to alcohol, it is much less harmful. As for me, I prefer delta 8 wax. I don't really like the taste of cannabis, but here I have the opportunity to choose the taste of, say, cherry pie. Plus, it really helps me relax and feel better.

Nov 05, 2021 08:11 AM
Forty Tre

Wow, I didn't even know that it could affect the real estate market. That's great that legalization positively affects many spheres, and I hope that more countries will understand that and finally allow using cannabis. For example, when I tried cbg gummies from this page while I was in the US for the first time, I noticed only positive effects, and I'm sure that it has way more benefits than negative side-effects.

Nov 15, 2021 12:53 AM
Ann Lee

Greetings! I concur that high-quality CBD products can offer significant advantages to one's well-being. Nevertheless, I acknowledge that not all cannabis enthusiasts may be inclined to explore CBD . Hence, I encourage you to bookmark the website and delve into the details. Their remarkable strain is known for its efficacy in addressing stress, anxiety, and a range of mental disorders. 


Sep 06, 2023 04:44 AM