Loan Estimate Challenges
Massachusetts’s Biggest LE Challenges

Massachusetts is an attorney state, which means all closings there require supervision by a licensed attorney and will therefore incur attorney fees. Land surveys, referred to as “plot plans,” are required for purchase transactions, which means an additional fee to each transaction.

Municipal Lien Certificates and Declarations of Homestead

Municipal lien certificates, certifying there are no liens on the property that is the subject of the transaction, are included in the closing fees of a transaction taking place in Massachusetts. In cases where a bankruptcy might be involved, closing fees can also include a Declaration of the Homestead and its corresponding fee.

Land Records: Registered or Recorded

Massachusetts is unique in that it offers two types of land recordation: registered and recorded. While the fees for each are the same, it can mean that some properties, if recorded and registered, could bring twice the fee. The difference between whether it is customary to designate a property record as “registered” or “recorded” varies by location.

Transfer Taxes

Across the state, when it comes to transfer taxes there is a wide variation at both the county and municipal levels. For example, some jurisdictions (but not all) include land bank taxes for real estate transfers. Nantucket is one such county. In fact, in Dukes County (Martha’s Vineyard), the land bank tax can bring a tax of up to 2 percent of the property’s value.

Also in Dukes County, should the assessed value of the property in question be greater than the sales price, the tax is measured against the assessed value.

Also of Note…

In Massachusetts, it’s worth noting that the transfer tax and deed tax are usually paid by the seller. However, in Barnstable County (Cape Cod), some real estate contracts will mandate that those taxes be paid by the buyer.

Finally, one location of which to be aware when it comes to closing fees is Norfolk County, primarily because its recording fees differ from those across the state.


Last edited July 14, 2023

LodeStar Software Solutions prides itself on being the most accurate provider of the most up-to-date closing fees in the mortgage industry—so much so that we guarantee those rates. However, unlike the closing fee data we provide our clients through our product, LodeStar can only guarantee the accuracy of the content delivered through LE Challenges at the time of publication.LE Challenges is published solely for marketing and advertising purposes to provide an example of the depth and breadth of our commitment to providing accurate closing fees to its clients. While we do our best to update the content of LE Challenges as often as possible, the data shared here is in no way intended to serve as data to be relied upon in the generation of an actual Loan Estimate or any other element of a mortgage transaction.



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