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  • Joel Votolato

Massachusetts Title 5

Updated: Jul 13, 2023


Title 5 is a crucial aspect of Massachusetts real estate law that governs the installation, inspection, and maintenance of septic systems. The regulation is designed to protect public health and the environment by ensuring that septic systems are constructed and operated properly. This article will provide an overview of Title 5 and explain why it is essential for property owners and buyers to understand the regulation.


Title 5 requires all properties with septic systems to undergo regular inspection and maintenance to prevent contamination of groundwater and soil. The regulation specifies that septic systems must be inspected every three years, and the inspection must be conducted by a licensed inspector. If the inspection reveals any problems with the septic system, the property owner must hire a licensed septic system designer to develop a repair plan. Once the repairs are completed, the system must be inspected again to ensure that it meets all Title 5 requirements.


Title 5 also regulates the installation of new septic systems. The regulation requires that all new systems be designed and installed by a licensed septic system designer and that the system meet specific requirements for the size of the property, the number of bedrooms in the home, and other factors. The local board of health must approve the design before construction can begin.


Property owners who violate Title 5 regulations can face significant penalties. For example, failure to obtain a Title 5 inspection or to repair a system that is found to be non-compliant can result in fines of up to $25,000 per day of violation. Property owners may also be required to replace their septic system at their own expense if the system is found to be in significant non-compliance with Title 5 requirements.


For buyers of real estate in Massachusetts, Title 5 is an important consideration. Before purchasing a property with a septic system, buyers should ensure that the system has been inspected recently and that there are no significant issues that require repair. If repairs are needed, buyers should negotiate with the seller to ensure that the repairs are completed before the sale is finalized.


In conclusion, Title 5 is a crucial aspect of Massachusetts real estate law that governs the installation, inspection, and maintenance of septic systems. The regulation is designed to protect public health and the environment by ensuring that septic systems are constructed and operated properly. Property owners and buyers should be aware of Title 5 requirements to avoid penalties and ensure that septic systems are functioning correctly.

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