OREA Releases Recommendations to Protect Consumers Against the Risks Involved in Purchasing a Former Grow-op

Muskoka, ON, April 9, 2018 – Growing marijuana in a home can pose significant health and safety issues for unsuspecting home buyers. With the legalization of marijuana looming, there are no rules in place to protect a home buyer from purchasing a former grow operation. In its Action Plan for Cannabis Legalization released today, the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) is urging the Provincial Government to bring forward measures that will ensure home buyers are protected from the health and safety risks associated with former grow ops.

“The legalization of recreational marijuana in Ontario is going to have significant impacts on homes, as many people will choose to grow their own plants,” said Mike Stahls, President of The Lakelands Association of REALTORS®. “Growing cannabis indoors often involves creating conditions that can lead to the formation of mold and fungus, which can have serious health risks for seniors and young children. Therefore, the long-term impact of legal marijuana cultivation on Ontario’s housing stock must be taken into consideration by policy makers.”

In its Action Plan, OREA proposes five policy changes to protect consumers from the risks involved in purchasing a former grow operation, including:

  1. Designate illegal grow operations as unsafe under the Building Code Act.
  2. Mandate that illegal cannabis operations are inspected by a municipal building official
  3. Require municipalities to register remediation work orders on the title of a former grow operation.
  4. Mandate that all licensed home inspectors receive training on how to spot the signs of a former marijuana grow operation.
  5. Restrict the number of plants that a home owner can grow from four to one in units 1,000 square feet or smaller.

Legalization of marijuana in other jurisdictions, like Denver, Colorado, has led to a significant increase in cultivation inside private dwellings. Moreover, the RCMP does not believe that legalization will eliminate the involvement of organized crime in the cultivation and sale of illegal cannabis.

“Property owners often go to great lengths to hide the evidence of a former grow operation, making it difficult for Realtors®, home inspectors and unsuspecting home buyers to detect,” said Mike Stahls. “It is unlikely Ontario will introduce a law banning the cultivation of cannabis in homes if federal legislation permits it. However, the Provincial Government has the authority to enforce measures to ensure consumers are protected in the largest investment of their lives, and we urge them to exercise that authority.”

More information is available at, www.ProtectOntarioHomes.ca.

 

ABOUT OREA

The Ontario Real Estate Association represents 70,000 brokers and salespeople who are members of the 38 real estate boards throughout the province. OREA serves its REALTOR® members through a wide variety of professional publications, educational programs, advocacy, and other services.

 

ABOUT THE LAKELANDS

The Lakelands Association of REALTORS® is a professional organization committed to serving its 800+ REALTOR® members with the tools, advocacy and professional development opportunities required to promote excellence, knowledge and a high standard of ethics and business practices.

Our members provide real estate services representing different land use properties ranging from recreational, residential and commercial throughout the major geographical areas within the regions of the District of Parry Sound, District Municipality of Muskoka, Haliburton County and Northern Simcoe County including the City of Orillia.

REALTORS® are champions of homeownership and are committed to improving Quality of Life by supporting policies that help ensure economic vitality, provide housing opportunities, preserve the environment, protect property owners and build better communities with good schools and safe neighbourhoods

 

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