Saturday, June 7, 2008

An interesting circumstance

We live in a town where "pot houses" or "grow houses" are a really big problem. Take a look at this listing for an apartment in our town:

Looking for that perfect live / work space? One bedroom upstairs living area (600 sq ft.) overlooks bird sanctuary and includes wood flooring, skylights .... No smoking, pets or marijuana cultivation.
Must see to appreciate. $1000/ mo.

One of the problems that occurs when a house or apartment was used for growing marijuana is the residual crime that occurs after the tenants are evicted (or jailed). Even though the growers are gone, the house is still prone to break-ins because other "would-be-pot-thiefs" don't know there is no longer marijuana being grown there. Also, marijuana is not regulated, and thus people growing it may use any array of chemicals they want to make it grow faster, bigger, etc. It's not organic! The residue of pesticides and other chemicals and of the pot itself (yes, it has a residue, and of course, a strong scent) may be painted over, but can never really be eliminated. Property management places are not required to disclose whether perspective apartments or houses were used for marijuana cultivation, so renters may be at risk. It is important to inspect a potential living space for signs of cultivation (vents, outlets added in closets, other funky wiring, important to check the attic, scent) before signing any lease. So far in our neighborhood this year there have been 3 busts of houses that were being used for the sole purpose of marijuana cultivation and sale. And we live in a quiet, safe, and small neighborhood! I don't want to be too winey. I really love living on the North Coast. It is beautiful and has so much to offer. I just hope somehow this issue of pot houses will be addressed. There is already a shortage of housing in our town, and it really, um, chaps-my-hide that folks are buying or renting spaces and ruining them by growing pot.

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