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Free Massachusetts Rental Application Form

Prepare a printable Massachusetts rental application form to verify potential tenants. Tailor your application to Massachusetts’s statutes now with all the critical details required by law.

Last Update September 17th, 2022

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What Is a Massachusetts Residential Rental Application

A Massachusetts rental application is a legal document used by landlords and property managers to assess and choose an appropriate tenant for a rental property. They are sometimes known by other common names such as:

  • Tenant applications 

  • Rental lease applications

  • Lease applications

  • Application for a rental property

Massachusetts Rental Applications by Type

There are two main types of rental applications in Massachusetts. You must select the most relevant one depending on the type of property being rented, local laws, and the type of leasing agreement that will be used. 

Standard/General Rental Application Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Rental Application
Which landlords can use it? Private landlords Landlords with Section 8 housing
What kind of tenants is it designed for? Any Tenants eligible for subsidized housing

What to Include in a Massachusetts Rental Application Form

Both landlords and tenants need to provide specific information on a Massachusetts rental application. This is so it complies with state laws and allows an informed decision to be made. The details each party should provide can be seen below.

Data the Tenant Can Be Asked for Essential Disclosures from the Landlord
Personal data The property’s condition
Rental history Potential hazards to the tenant
Employment details Shared utility arrangements
Income information Rent control rules
Credit history Smoking policy
Personal references The security deposit
Permission for background checks Associated fees

The information offered by either the landlord or tenant will vary from application to application. However, it is vitally important that both sides get the clearest picture possible about the nature of the lease before signing an agreement.

Massachusetts Rental Application Laws

Massachusetts has many rules and statutes regulating its housing market. These must be fully considered when preparing an application for rental properties in the state. 

Application Fee

A landlord in Massachusetts is not permitted to charge an application fee. It does not make a difference if it is refundable or not. 

On the other hand, in compliance with  § 254 CMR 7.00(1), real estate brokers and agents are permitted to charge a fee for rental applications (Section 15B(1)(b)).

Security Deposit

Landlords in Massachusetts can charge up to the cost of one month’s rent for security deposits (Section 15B(1)(b)(iii)). 

The tenant must dive the security deposit within 10 days from the beginning of the tenancy. 

Once you receive the deposit, you must provide the tenant with a statement of the condition of the property. 

You are required to put the deposit in a separate interest-bearing account in a bank found in Massachusetts.

Housing Discrimination Law

In Massachusetts, there is no specific state law relating to housing discrimination. However, the Fair Housing Act (FHA) is in place. The FHA states that it is illegal to discriminate based on the following characteristics: 

  • Race

  • Color

  • Nationality

  • Religion

  • Sex

  • Familial status

  • Disability

  • Criminal history

As a consequence, you are not allowed to ask for any of these details on a Massachusetts Rental Application form nor to include them in the decision-making process. 

Notice of Eligibility

You must disclose the screening criteria used during the application process, as well as anything that could lead to a refusal. To make sure individuals understand this in advance of the application, they must provide a signature of acknowledgment on the application. 

Consent Credit Check

The Federal Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) stipulates that potential tenants must agree to any credit checks you require. To show they consent, they must provide written acknowledgment on the application form.

Massachusetts Rental Application Sample

Looking over a readily prepared template of a rental application can make it much easier to create your own. Review our document sample below to get more familiar with what your application form will look like when it’s completed.

FAQs About Massachusetts Rental Application Form

Understanding what your Massachusetts rental application can and cannot do is vital before you create your own from scratch. Find out more about how these screening documents work and what you need to know when writing them.

Why Do I Need a Massachusetts Rental Application?

A Massachusetts rental application gives you the opportunity to learn more about your tenant before committing to a legal contract with them. The application lets you collect data on your prospective rental resident so you may carry out important checks to:

  • Review their rental history

  • Verify their employment and income

  • Learn of any criminal history or credit issues

What Are Credit References on a Massachusetts Rental Application?

A credit reference is a document that provides information on the credit history of an applicant for a rental property. This may be requested on Massachusetts rental applications so that landlords can properly assess whether a potential tenant will be able to meet the rental payment schedule.

Do I Need to Ask for a Social Security Number in a Massachusetts Rental Application?

It is not usually necessary to request a Social Security number (SSN) on a Massachusetts rental application. However, you may consider requesting this data from an applicant if you want to run certain background checks on them.

Additionally, you must always get written permission from the tenant on the application form if you want to use their SSN. When you handle someone else’s Social Security information you always need consent first and must disclose that you will properly handle this data. 

These days, most screening companies can obtain the applicant’s SSN directly by requesting it securely from the applicant via email. Remember, however, that you must always inform the potential tenant and have their permission before you run any background checks.

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