Property managers are often confused on the stance of marijuana and their rental property. Some tenants may have a legitimate medical need for marijuana while others enjoy using it recreationally. Similar to a “no smoking, no pets” policy, what is the procedure landlords need to follow in Denver related to marijuana?

Setting Limits on Smoking

Landlords do need to decide where they stand in relation to allowing cannabis use. Some landlords have allowed the use of cannabis, but ask that smoking is done outside the property. Once the decision has been made in relation to the landlord’s stance on pot, it needs to be put into the lease. Legal advisors are important to help draft a correct lease. Working with a skilled property management company can also take the burden off your shoulders when it comes to understanding renters and marijuana use.

The US Department of Housing and Urban Development states that landlords can put it into the lease the marijuana is federally illegal and landlords can deny its use within their structure or on the grounds. Correct lease language protects the landlords, and makes it easier to handle enforcement of the lease in the event that a tenant is breaking the rule.

Tenants with Disabilities and Medical Marijuana Use

Since marijuana is illegal under federal law, landlords can deny its use even to tenants who do want to use it for medical reasons. In Colorado, it is legal to have marijuana, but it is still prohibited per the lease and the federal law. It is important to go back to the fact that marijuana is illegal under federal law, even if it is legal at a state level. Contact an attorney if there is confusion in the way the lease has been written. A lease needs to be crystal clear on the use of marijuana in order to prevent confusion with tenants. Make a list of prohibited things, allowing it to be easier to evict someone if they are not complying with the lease agreement.

Growing Marijuana as a Tenant

The Federal Cannabis Act does allow adults to grow up to twelve plants in their residence for personal use. However, a landlord that does not want cannabis growing in their dwelling needs to notify all tenants that cultivation is prohibited in the rental units. Any new tenant agreement made after January 1, 2018 needs to include this prohibition information to prevent cannabis cultivation.

Keyrenter Highlands Ranch Property Management provides clear information related to prohibiting marijuana use in your rental property. Contact our office if you have additional questions or need clarification on federal law in relation to tenant use of marijuana.