Could Cannabis Legalization Impact the KW Real Estate Market?

The closer we get to legalizing cannabis, the more it appears the move will impact just about every facet of Canadian society, from residential tenancies to the workplace. Now, Canadian realtors are warning that it could have damaging effects on Canadian home buyers – including those in the red-hot KW real estate market. Are they right?

Cannabis and the Real Estate Market

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), always at the forefront of lobbying on behalf of Canada’s vast real estate sector, was one of many parties to make an appearance before the Senate’s social affairs committee ahead of the Senate’s vote on Bill C-45, aka the legal pot bill.

CREA’s concerns with the bill lay in its provision to allow Canadians to grow a small amount of cannabis for personal use on their own properties – four plants, to be exact. CREA’s representatives stopped short of calling this a grow-op, but did not hesitate to compare it to actual, illegal marijuana growing operations.

“On the surface it sounds moderate, but the legislation doesn’t limit the number of crops or the size of each plant,” warns CREA Chief Officer Michael Bourque. “Four plants could yield over five kilograms a year, which has the potential to cause structural damage to dwellings and comes with associated health consequences.”

Initially, the legislation did limit the size of the plants to 100 centimetres in height. However, recognizing the impracticality of having police attend to people’s homes with metre sticks, this restriction was amended out before the bill left the House of Commons.

Bourque adds that properties that formerly served as illegal grow-ops are hard to sell, sometimes requiring between $50,000 and $100,000 in investment to bring up to a livable standard.

Four plants is hardly a grow-op, but he does raise an issue that is on many homeowner’s minds. What if their neighbours decide to grow cannabis? How will that impact the neighbourhood’s property values?

Should Home Buyers Beware?

And CREA has another concern: what about potential home buyers who could unknowingly be buying into a former grow-op?

“Former cannabis grow operations, even on a small scale, can pose significant health and safety issues for unsuspecting home buyers,” CREA President David Reid said. “These risks are often masked by owners of existing grow operations when the property is sold, making it very difficult for home buyers and realtors to detect problems like mould and fungus.”

While it may seem farfetched, this sort of revelation after already signing on the dotted line could hit home buyers hard. And since the law doesn’t provide for added protections for home buyers, it’s up to purchasers to take measures to ensure they know what they’re buying.

The issue is a reminder of the importance of having the right people on board when it comes to buying or selling a home in Kitchener-Waterloo, including the best home inspector, the best broker, and the best KW real estate lawyer you can find.

The Pharmacy Business

Making the decision to sell your business is never easy, and it can be especially difficult for pharmacy owners. Family-owned pharmacies are an important part of their communities. Over the years, people come to rely on their pharmacist for trusted advice. But for one reason or another, there often comes a day when the owner says, “I need to sell my pharmacy.” Unfortunately, many pharmacies are bought out by a large pharmacy chain, and the family business is all but gone.

When the times comes to see your pharmacy, you may seek the services of an American pharmacy broker to help find a buyer for your pharmacy. Here’s a brief explanation of what a pharmacy broker does and things to consider when hiring one in the United States.

I need to sell my pharmacy. What’s next?

Finding a buyer for a pharmacy may not be easy. You may already face competition from a pharmacy chain in town, or live in a remote area where business has become scarce. If you are having difficulty finding a pharmacy buyer, or you need to sell quickly, an American pharmacy broker may be able to help.

Pharmacy brokers are in the business of helping pharmacy owners sell their business. They can help you locate a buyer for your pharmacy. However, pharmacy brokers themselves are not buyers. Pharmacy brokers simply connect you with an interested party.

Pharmacy brokers charge a commission for their services. That means they take a cut of the sale of your pharmacy. Because of this, you should only retain a pharmacy broker if you are willing to share a piece of your equity with the broker. You do not need a pharmacy broker if you can sell the business on your own.

Additionally, when you hire an American pharmacy broker, you should be prepared for the possibility of a large pharmacy chain taking over your business. When you sell to a franchise, there is no guarantee the buyer will retain your practices, policies, and employees (unless that is part of your contract.)

I need to sell my pharmacy, but I don’t want it to change. What can I do?

Just because you want to sell your pharmacy does not always mean you are ready to let it go. Many owners wish to see their business continue to play its role in the community as it always has.

In this case, you have options. You can forego an American pharmacy broker and wait to sell to the right buyer. You can also sell to a purchaser like Colony Drug, which guarantees your business will retain its name, staff, and independent management.