Massachusetts Land Use Monitor

Massachusetts Land Use Monitor

Real-Time News & Commentary on Massachusetts Land Use & Real Estate Law

Category Archives: Restrictive Covenants

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Affordable Housing Covenants Have Protected Status in Foreclosures

Posted in Affordable Housing, Condominiums, Foreclosure, Restrictive Covenants
The Boston Redevelopment Authority d/b/a Boston Planning and Development Agency has the right to challenge a foreclosure that purportedly terminated a covenant restricting the use of property to affordable housing. In allowing the BPDA’s suit to move forward, the Business Litigation Session of the Suffolk Superior Court recognized two truisms of Massachusetts foreclosure law. First,… Continue Reading

Some Old Land Use Restrictions Don’t Die, Or Even Fade Away

Posted in Restrictive Covenants, Subdivision Control, Title
In its recent decision in Samuelson v. Planning Bd. of Orleans, the Appeals Court affirmed and expanded on its 2011 decision in Killorin v. Zoning Bd. of Appeals of Andover, which confined the reach of M.G.L. c. 184, § 23. That statute generally limits conditions or restrictions on the use of land to a term of 30 years. Thus,… Continue Reading

Donnybrook at Ballymeade

Posted in Restrictive Covenants
The Land Court’s recent decision in New Falmouth Woods, LLC v. Ballymeade Property Owners Association, Inc. is a double bogey for Ballymeade Country Club in Falmouth, Massachusetts.  The facts of the case are relatively simple.  At the time Ballymeade Country Club was being developed, the owner of a neighboring residential subdivision recorded a Declaration of Covenants, Easements, and Restrictions… Continue Reading

Appeals Court Clarifies Powers of Association Trustees

Posted in Condominiums, Miscellaneous, Restrictive Covenants
Association trustees are batting .500 in two recent and colorful Appeals Court decisions.  Trustees of a homeowner’s association got on base in Rawan v. Massad (pdf), in which the defendants, Mr. and Mrs. Massad, decided to help their son and others in the community “play ball” by creating a regulation baseball diamond on their property.  The town had only one other ballfield, and the… Continue Reading

Appeals Court Declines Invitation To Destroy Land Use Law As We Know It

Posted in Policy, Restrictive Covenants, Zoning
The Appeals Court had a momentous decision to make in Killorin v. Board of Appeals of Andover – a decision that would mark the difference between entropy and order.  Imagine a world in which every condition in every special permit, variance, subdivision approval, site plan approval, wetlands permit, and other discretionary approval affecting the use of real… Continue Reading

Appeals Court Opens Barn Door Halfway in Horse Case

Posted in Agricultural Use, Restrictive Covenants, Zoning
In Rosenfeld v. Zoning Board of Appeals of Mendon (pdf), the Massachusetts Appeals Court considered the plaintiff abutters’ challenge to the defendant zoning board’s issuance of a special permit authorizing the construction of an equestrian facility on a 46-acre parcel in a residential zone.  As proposed, the facility would feature stables, an indoor training arena, a trainer’s residence,… Continue Reading