Entries by Dawn Stanyon

When a Short-Term Rental is Not a Good Neighbor

Many Berkshire County towns have now passed zoning and general bylaws permitting short-term rentals. Most recently, short-term rentals have been approved in Alford, Becket, Sandisfield, North Adams, and Washington. There are certainly benefits to short-term rentals, both for homeowners and for towns; however, short-term rental use of homes is more in the nature of a […]

Glover SJC Zoning Case: Religious Use Exemption

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has ruled in favor of Lazan, Glover & Puciloski’s client, Hume Lake Christian Camps. The Court ruled this month that state law exempting religious organizations from local zoning bylaws extended to the camp’s request for 12 recreational vehicle sites. The case is Hume Lake Christian Camps, Inc. v. Planning Board of […]

Buying Land in the Berkshires? Avoid Pitfalls!

If you’re buying land in the Berkshires, you almost certainly want to be able to build on that land. It’s important to have the opportunity to sufficiently evaluate the land for your needs before you buy. You don’t want to ask after the purchase, “How close to the property line can I build?” or “How […]

What to Know About Septic Systems in the Berkshires

If you’ve had a sewer line connected to your home, the whole concept of a septic system might be new to you. You might think that it’s just another kind of sewer. However, the problem is that rules about septic systems in the Berkshires are very detailed and, if there are problems, you own them—not […]

What Are a Realtor’s Responsibilities When Talking About Zoning?

What ARE a realtor’s responsibilities when talking about zoning with a client here in the Berkshires? It makes sense for a successful realtor to describe all aspects of a featured property. Prospective buyers are likely interested in the interior design, the layout, the exterior appearance, landscaping, outbuildings, and numerous other aspects of the property. One […]

What is a Nominee Trust in Massachusetts?

It is common for home buyers in Massachusetts to take title to property with a nominee realty trust (sometimes simply called a “realty trust” or “nominee trust”). What is a nominee realty trust? A nominee trust is an entity unique to Massachusetts, and despite its name, it’s not a true trust. It does, however, provide […]

Can Text Messages Form a Binding Real Estate Contract?

In Massachusetts, real estate contracts or agreements must be in writing. Traditionally, this means that a real estate sale agreement must be set out in a purchase and sale agreement, signed by all parties. However, the world has gone digital; this drastically changes this rule. Can text messages form a binding real estate contract? Read on.