Massachusetts enacts short-term
rental tax

BOSTON – Property owners in Massachusetts, take note. The Bay State has a new law that applies state and local taxes to short-term rentals, or those that are more than two weeks in duration and less than 31 days.

The law affects rentals starting July 1, for which a rental contract was entered into on or after Jan. 1, according to a summary posted by the state of Massachusetts. It applies to houses, apartments, condos and cottages, but does not include time-shares or properties rented out through tenancies at will or through month-to-month leases.

The tax will vary, based on local taxes, but will include a state excise tax of 5.7 percent. Local taxes can range from nothing to 6.5 percent, based on the town. Cape Cod and Islands properties, which are part of a water protection fund, may add another 2.8 percent.

All property owners who intend to rent their properties also have to register. The registry is still in development.

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Mary MacDonald is a staff writer for the PBN. Contact her at