Lauren has experience helping her clients buy and sell homes in historic Cambridge, Massachusetts.  She is part of the Hammond team, and the Hammond office is located in the middle of Harvard Square. You can learn more about Lauren here.




1.    Seller's attorney fees, often in the range of $800-$1500.

2.    A newly prepared deed conveying title to the buyer.  In the event seller does not have an attorney, most bank attorneys will draw a deed for approximately $100.00.  Adequate notice of request to prepare a new deed is needed.  If registered land is involved, in addition to the deed, the seller must bring his Owner's Duplicate Certificate of Title.

3.    The Massachusetts excise stamps charged to the seller upon transfer of title are $4.56 per $1,000.00.

4.    Outstanding mortgages or other liens which are outstanding must be paid off at closing.  Often written notice is necessary before lenders will release the payoff figures.  The attorney fee to secure payoff figure and to draw discharge and record same is in the $100.00 range.

5.    Adjustments to final water bill, sewer, electric, and oil readings are presented and recognized at closing.

6.    Brokerage fee is due and payable at closing.

7.     A smoke detector certificate must be issued by the Fire Department.  The ordering of this needs to be coordinated well in advance as no closing can take place without a recent certificate (usually within sixty days) issued by the Fire Department.  Certificates issued for prior sales are unacceptable.  Costs for this certificate are the obligation of the seller ($50 in Cambridge for single-dwelling units, $100 for two unit buildings, $150 for three-six unit buildings).

8.    Certificate as to unpaid common charges (also known as 6d Certificate and applicable to condominiums only) is required at closing in the form of a notarized statement from the trustees or board of manages of the condominium certifying that all outstanding condominium fees have been paid as of the month of the closing.  Costs for this certificate are the responsibility of the seller.

9.    If the seller has received the tax bill from his city or town, it should be brought to the closing whether paid or unpaid.  If the tax bill is paid, bring to the closing a stamped receipt and inform the conveying attorney prior to the closing that you will be bringing your receipt.  This, along with the municipal lien certificate (which will have been ordered by the buyer's attorney), documents your lien status.

10.    If there are to be holdbacks or escrows because of outstanding issues, these issues need to be discussed well before the closing date.  Mortgage lenders have become more stringent about holdback agreements and require that they be approved by the lender prior to closing.