Marijuana + Property Management: The Info + Resources You Need

As of January 1, 2020, recreational consumption, possession, and sales of cannabis products are legal in Illinois for people over the age of 21. Illinois is the 11th state in the country to legalize marijuana for recreational use.

Usage of medical marijuana in Illinois has been allowed since 2013, but the legalization will broaden the marijuana industry’s impact on our economy and our real estate industry. This policy change has several implications for real estate practitioners.

Keep in mind that, although recreational marijuana use will be legal in Illinois, marijuana is still considered illegal at the federal level. 

Where can cannabis be consumed?

  • Consumption of cannabis in public is illegal. This includes streets, parks, and areas adjacent to dispensaries.
  • Consumption on private property is permitted, subject to the discretion of the property owner.  Property managers can limit smoking in rental units. This means the property owner can have a policy that tenants cannot smoke marijuana in a rental unit, but they will not be able to stop a tenant from using other means of using marijuana, such as ingestibles/edibles 
  • Cannabis may not be consumed in any vehicle, regardless of whether it is running.
  • Employers may mandate drug-free workplaces. While managers cannot control what their contractors or employees do off the job, they can have rules which clearly state the contractors or employees cannot be impaired in any way while working.

I’m a property manager. Can I ban cannabis on my property?

  • Property managers cannot prohibit legal use either medically or recreationally.
  • However, property managers can elect to make the property smoke-free, in which case a legal medical or legal recreational user would be prohibited from smoking cannabis products in the unit or in the home. Tenants would then have to use another form, like ingestibles/edibles.

What do I need to know about possible cannabis cultivation/home grow?

  • Medical cannabis patients may grow up to 5 cannabis plants for personal use. They must be enclosed in a secure (locked) location.
  • Home grow is not allowed for non-patients.
  • REALTORS® should be aware that marijuana cultivation indoors can have impacts including excessive electricity usage. There is also the potential for high humidity as a result of how the plants are grown. If a REALTOR® sees mold or water damage that may have resulted from indoor cultivation, they should have a conversation with the property owner about the disclosure of a physical defect. Regardless, the disclosure rules currently used remain in place.