Massachusetts law about reverse mortgages: Home Equity Conversion Mortgages (HECM)

Laws, regulations, cases, and web sources on reverse mortgages.

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Table of Contents

Massachusetts laws

MGL c.167E, § 7 Reverse mortgage loans

MGL c.167E, § 7A Reverse mortgage loan requirements

MGL c.171, § 65C Credit unions: reverse mortgages

MGL c.171, § 65C-1/2 Credit unions: reverse mortgage loan requirements

MGL c.183, § 67 Limitations on reverse mortgages

Massachusetts regulations

209 CMR 32.33 Requirements for reverse mortgages

Federal regulations

12 CFR 226.33 Requirements for reverse mortgages

24 CFR 206.1-2.6.211 Home equity conversion mortgage insurance  

Selected cases

James B. Nutter & Co. v. Murphy, 478 Mass. 664 (2018)
A reverse mortgage did not contain the formal language of "statutory power of sale," but only said that the company could “invoke the power of sale and other remedies permitted by applicable law." The SJC held that, given that this was a reverse mortgage, and not a traditional mortgage, "where the lender cannot hold the borrower personally liable for the debt, and where the lender’s only recourse on default is to obtain repayment through a foreclosure sale," "the only reasonable and practical interpretation of the mortgage was that it incorporated the statutory power of sale."

Web sources

General info, pros and cons

Approved reverse mortgage lenders and loan programs, Mass. Division of Banks.
Lists approved lenders in Massachusetts followed by a list of inactive previously approved reverse mortgage lenders.

Home equity conversion mortgages for seniors, US Dept. of Housing and Urban Development.
Provides links to detailed information for seniors and lenders

Reverse Mortgage lending for banks, credit unions, and lenders, Mass. Division of Banks.
"Information for banks, credit unions, and lenders seeking to make reverse mortgage loans in the Commonwealth."

Reverse mortgage information for consumers, Mass. Division of Banks.
Provides information on issues to consider and steps that must be taken to get a reverse mortgage loan.

Reverse mortgage loans, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
CFPB provides general consumer information about reverse mortgages; the agency publishes Consumer Advisories, and has put together a Discussion Guide that reviews key concepts of reverse mortgages.

The reverse mortgage: pros and cons,
A reverse mortgage loan can help some older homeowners meet financial needs, but can also jeopardize their retirement if not used carefully.

Reverse mortgages, AARP.
Discusses the advantages and disadvantages of reverse mortgages, how they work, and other options to consider.

Reverse mortgages, Federal Trade Commission.


Foreclosure of reverse mortgages,
Information on when a lender or servicer can foreclose on a reverse mortgage.

Protections for reverse mortgage borrowers, COVID 19 extensions, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Heirs and spouses

As reverse mortgages end, heirs are left with heartache, Nick Penzenstadler, USA TODAY Updated Dec. 23, 2019.

Can a reverse mortgage be assumed by an heir to the property?, SFGate.

If I get a reverse mortgage, can I leave my home to my heirs?, Nolo.

Reverse mortgages: Foreclosure protections for nonborrowing spouses, Nolo.
Reverse mortgage rules might be able to protect you if your spouse passes away, but you aren't named as a co-borrower on the mortgage.

What heirs need to know about reverse mortgages, Kiplinger.

Print sources

Corpus juris secundum, 59 C.J.S. Mortgages § 667 Right to foreclose; effect of death of mortgagor – Reverse mortgages, March 2020 update.

Elderlaw: Advocacy for the aging, West, chapter 22, § 42-52 Reverse mortgages.

Estate planning for the aging or incapacitated client in Massachusetts, 5th ed., MCLE, loose-leaf. Chapter 15: Nationwide reverse mortgage programs.

Massachusetts Practice:

Mortgage lending, NCLC,  2019, Chapter 9.


Last updated: May 22, 2023

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