Massachusetts law about submetering water for tenants

The submetering law allows landlords to separately bill tenants for water in certain circumstances. This is a compilation of laws, regulations, and web sources on water submetering law by the Trial Court Law Libraries.

Table of Contents

Massachusetts law

MGL c.186, § 22 Water submetering in residential tenancies

Massachusetts regulations

105 CMR 410.354 Metering of electricity and water
Allows landlords to separately bill tenants for electricity and water in certain circumstances.

Web sources

Traps for the unwary: charging tenants for water, Ferraro and Boulé, 2014. 
Describes details of the law for landlords, including some lesser-known provisions.

When can a tenant be billed directly for water under the new water law?, Mass. Legal Services 
"Under the new water law, landlords may now bill tenants separately for water if all of the following requirements are met: Landlord has installed submeters that measure actual water used in your apartment; Landlord has installed low-flow fixtures; Your tenancy started on or after March 16, 2005; Previous tenant was not forced out; There is a written rental agreement that spells out water bill arrangements; and Landlord has filed proper certification." 25-page booklet includes: Who Pays for Water, How Submetering Works, Paying the Water Bill, Plumbing Problems, and More About the Law.

Additional Resources

Print sources



Within Massachusetts only

Within Massachusetts only


Reference librarians online Chat with a law librarian 
Reference librarians via email


Administrative office (no law library at this location)
2 Center Plaza
9th Floor
Boston, MA 02108
Last updated: June 5, 2019