SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — When it comes to legal marijuana, you don't have to smoke it, sell it, or grow it to be cashing in. If you own a home, you could already be making money.
A recent study shows homes near cannabis dispensaries get a boost in value.
Sacramento is now home to 30 cannabis dispensaries. Some are even located in well to do neighborhoods, but real estate appraiser Ryan Lundquist says, you probably won't notice because they operate with little fanfare.
"There's one in East Sac right next to McKinley Park, but the thing is, you wouldn't ever know it unless you were a connoisseur, so unless you were a connoisseur, so unless you're really going there, you have no idea," said real estate appraiser Ryan Linquist.
Brad Wenger lives around the corner from that dispensary but isn't looking to sell his place anytime soon. A resident for 15 years, he says he doubts the dispensary has had any effect on his home's value.
"I'd be surprised if it moved the needle one way or another a lot. Property values around here have been going up generally just because a shortage of housing," Wenger said.
Lundquist tracks the cannabis industry and its effect on real estate. He says when making a valuation, dispensaries do not have any inherent effect, good or bad.
"It's just another commercial business as far as I'm concerned," Lundquist said.
Green Solutions is another dispensary located near a neighborhood. The manager told us, at first, residents were concerned about the dispensary attracting potential problems, but those fears have been unfounded. The business celebrated its five year anniversary and the manager says over that time, he thinks they've brought a lot of value to the neighborhood by bringing in people.
"We bring a lot of people to the block. Between us and the restaurants, the new coffee shops, the new local business that are coming in. We're just a part of that, really. We don't see ourselves as anything different," he said.
For now, real estate in Sacramento seems to be accepting dispensaries as just another neighbor. But it's a market on the move, in its infancy, so the longer-term effects are still unknown.
Even though we have not seen the impacts yet, if the study holds true, home values in California should have gone up several thousand dollars. According to that study, states that legalize marijuana see an instant bump in home values, on average by more than $6,000.
In cities that allow dispensaries, home values increased $22,000 more than in cities where pot is illegal.
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