Real estate and the cannabis industry has changed a lot this decade. I, like just about every other cannabis consumer in Oregon, explored the idea of opening a dispensary and commercial cannabis garden. My idea never got off the ground due to various reasons, but I did spend some time looking into spaces to rent. That was no easy task, especially back then (this was in 2011/2012). Earlier this decade, the biggest problem was finding a landlord that would rent to you. That is not really a concern anymore.
These days there are cannabis businesses all over my area. Certain streets in the Willamette Valley of Oregon have become hotbeds for cannabis businesses. Most real estate companies in my area now are willing to rent to cannabis businesses, and as such, there are dispensaries everywhere. Like my friend Jorge Cervantes once said, if you have a garage in Oregon, it likely has a green cross on it.
But the increase in the willingness for property owners to work with the industry has been paralleled by the complexities that are involved in cannabis real estate. Zoning rules play a big part in where businesses can be located. Increased competition is creating an environment that is making it much harder to stand out in the crowd. A dispensary being located even a block in a different direction can be the difference between success and failure. And that doesn’t even get into the design of the inside and outside of the property, which in itself is a massive endeavor to dial in.
Having the right approach to real estate is very important to virtually every cannabis business out there. Unless you are like me, and you work from your couch in your sweatpants and you don’t need an office, real estate is going to be one of the most important tasks that you will need to tackle. If you don’t give it the focus and energy that it deserves, you could end up in a nightmare scenario due to the place you rented or purchased.
The upcoming Cannabis Business Summit and Expo, hosted by the National Cannabis Industry Association, has a session dedicated to cannabis real estate, and it will feature some of the top people in the cannabis real estate sector. One of those session members is Jason Thomas CEO & Managing Broker at Avalon Realty Advisors, Inc.. I met Jason in Denver at a Cannabis Cup several years ago, and not only is he an expert on all things real estate, he is also a freedom fighter whose activism I have admired for many years. Jason knows his stuff, is 100% credible, and has a true passion for the cannabis plant. Anything that he says should be soaked up, and seeing him speak at the upcoming Cannabis Business Summit is a must for anyone who is serious about succeeding in the cannabis space.
Diane and Jay Czarkowski from Canna Advisors will also be on the session panel, and they are top notch too. I met members of Canna Advisors at an event in Florida, and they are extremely knowledgeable about all things cannabis, including real estate. Megan Stone of The High Road Design Studio will join them on the session panel. Megan is an expert on interior design and many other important real estate related topics. The session will be hosted by Maureen McNamara, Founder & Chief Facilitator at Cannabis Trainers. This is going to absolutely be one of the best sessions at the whole event, and you will not want to miss it. Topics will include:
❖ How to get investors involved using real estate as platform
❖ How to raise capital and capitalize on your investment
❖ The Pros and Cons of Buying or Renting
❖ Property Hunting: How to Assemble a Real Estate team
❖ Know Before You Commit: State Rules and Regulations
❖ Build it and they will come: How high-end design choices lead to high-end clientele
❖ Go Local: How to gain community support through real estate
❖ What is trending in sustainable design
The Cannabis Business Summit was awarded ‘Business Event of the Year’ by The Cannabist, and for good reason. It’s going to be packed with important learning opportunities and will provide unparalleled networking opportunities. The event is taking place in Oakland June 12-14, and a limited amount of tickets are still available. From what I understand the expo floor is sold out, which I assure you is rare at cannabis events, despite what some event organizers will say! You will want to stop by every exhibitor to hear about what they are up to, and how they may be able to help with your cannabis industry endeavors. The days of simply existing in the cannabis space and crushing it are long gone. If you want to succeed in the cannabis industry these days you need to arm yourself with as much knowledge as possible, and you will not find a better opportunity to do that than at the Cannabis Business Summit in Oakland, trust me. I hope to see you there!