Massachusetts Apartment Lease Agreement

A Massachusetts apartment lease agreement serves as a legal contract that delineates the terms and conditions of the tenancy. From payment schedules to maintenance responsibilities and pet policies, each clause significantly shapes the rental experience.

No credit card required

Massachusetts Apartment Lease Agreement

This agreement must strictly adhere to statutes and provisions as a legally binding document. So, you should watch out for some of these sections as you sign a Massachusetts apartment lease agreement

Security Deposit

  • Amount of security deposit: Landlords in Massachusetts are limited to charging a security deposit that’s no more than the first month’s rent.
  • Separate bank account: Landlords must keep the tenant’s security deposit in a separate bank account, distinct from their funds. Failure to keep the security deposit in a separate account can result in the tenant being entitled to three times the deposit amount.
  • An itemized list of damages: Upon the tenant’s move-out, the landlord has 30 days to provide an itemized list of damages, receipts, and repair estimates. The list must be signed under penalty of perjury. If the landlord fails to provide this list within 30 days, they cannot claim any damages from the security deposit.
  • Return of security deposit: If the tenant leaves the apartment in the same condition as when they moved in, excluding normal wear and tear, the landlord must return the full security deposit, plus interest, within 30 days of the tenant’s move-out or the lease’s end date.
  • Interest on security deposit: Landlords must pay tenants annual interest on their security deposit at a rate set by the state. If the landlord fails to pay this interest, the tenant can deduct it from their next rent payment.

Entry Access

  • Landlords can’t enter without tenant permission except for legally valid lease terms or a court order. These include inspecting the apartment, making repairs, or showing the apartment to prospective tenants, purchasers, or mortgages. 

Pets Policy

  • Service/assistance animals: Landlords must accommodate tenants with disabilities using service or assistance animals. Reasonable accommodation requests can waive “no pet” rules.
  • Pet fees: Charging refundable pet deposits is allowed. Tenants can request fee waivers as disability accommodations.
  • Approval process: Requiring tenants to complete pet applications and sign lease addendums is permissible, provided approvals are granted reasonably.  
  • Grievance process: Illegally denied applicants can follow public housing grievance procedures to dispute decisions.  


For an effective tenancy, landlords and housing agents must reveal the following in a Massachusetts apartment lease agreement

  • Fire insurance: Tenants can request the insurance provider for property damage coverage. Landlords must furnish it within 15 days.
  • Lead paint: For pre-1978 units, landlords must disclose potential hazards to inform and protect tenants.  
  • Move-in checklist: Landlords must provide an account of the unit’s initial condition. Tenants can submit their documentation of observed damages.  
  • Deposit rules: Landlords must issue tenant receipts for security deposits paid, detailing relevant rental property descriptions and payment information.
  • Authorized Personnel: Landlord or any of their authorized personnel must provide their details (name, address, and contact number). This must be included for legal request notifications.