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Growing pot may affect real estate sales in British Columbia

Medical marijuana users can grow their own pot at home now thanks to the federal marijuana law. But British Columbia residents could find that doing so might affect their ability to sell their home if they ever choose to do so. However, the law is vague regarding whether or not homeowners have to disclose the fact that they grew marijuana inside their homes or on their premises, which can affect real estate sales.

Each province regulates its real estate industry. For example, The Real Estate Council of British Columbia (RECBC) says that vendors should tell purchasers in writing that they have grown pot on their property, regardless of the amount. A RECBC spokesperson said any kind of grow op could possibly have an adverse effect on the property.

Marijuana is not an easy plant to grow. Even in limited quantities, it has the potential to cause damage. To grow well, pot needs proper ventilation and light and humidity, and it could cause a strong smell in the home that could seep into any walls or floors. 

Disclosing the fact pot was grown on the property is advisable, especially for home inspection purposes. If an inspector unearths the likelihood that the house was used to grow pot, he or she will make it clear to the buyers. Such a revelation could be disastrous to the potential sale. Also, if the discovery is made by the purchasers after the closing, the seller could get sued.

It is wise for British Columbia residents to consult with a lawyer experienced in real estate law prior to and during any real estate deals. He or she will be able to guide clients in any requirements regarding disclosure. It is best to talk to a lawyer who knows the provincial legalities pertaining to real estate.

Source: findlaw.ca, “Growing your own medical marijuana could affect the sale of your house“, Miriam Yosowich, Accessed on Oct. 20, 2017