There about as many cannabis puns as there are opinions on the future of the thriving industry, which has blossomed in Los Angeles County despite federal laws that could easily nip it in the bud. In this issue’s cover story, reporters Dennis Lynch and Rich Bockmann look at the big money seeding the sector and the thorny issues that may blunt its weed-like growth.
To examine the pot-ential of cannabis retail, we’ve taken a look at the variety of newly licensed businesses soon to be lighting up (all right, I’m done with the puns, promise) West Hollywood with all manner of onsite cannabis consumption.
While cannabis landlords command a premium for their spaces, luxury residential brokers only wish they were seeing that kind of demand. But to say there’s a mood of doom and gloom would be overstating it. The brokers atop this year’s ranking of top agents in the county said that the buyers are out there, they’re just slow to commit.
At a time when brokerages are fighting fiercely to attract talent with competitive commission splits and new technology, national reporter E.B. Solomont profiles Keller Williams, whose franchise system and technology offerings put it in line to beat out the likes of buzzy firms like Compass and virtual firms such as eXp Realty, or so it hopes.
As the residential market adjusts to ever-changing conditions, so too do the construction firms in our ranking of the top contractors operating in Los Angeles, who are seeing the number of development projects dwindle as the costs of labor and materials are on the rise.
Other highlights in the issue include our look at the annual income of the CEOs and chairmen heading up some of real estate’s biggest public companies and associate editor Natalie Hoberman’s interview with the top residential broker in the county, per our ranking: Westside Estate Agency’s Kurt Rappaport. The agent, who moonlights as a developer, offered some details on his new private club venture while sharing some harsh words for his fellow brokers: “Most real estate people are a step below used car salesmen.” Yeowch!