A Betterment Loan is a Financial Agreement between a homeowner and the community. The Betterment Agreement outlines the rights and responsibilities of the community and the homeowner. The community agrees to provide financial assistance to the homeowner for the upgrade or repair their septic system. The homeowner contracts to have the work done and agrees to repay, with interest, any money advanced by the community over an agreed upon period of time.
The homeowner signs a Betterment Agreement and the community records a Notice of Betterment Agreement at the Registry of Deeds for the homeowner's property. A homeowner pays off the betterment loan over time, as an additional line item on their property tax bill. Loan payments must be made annually with the third quarter tax assessment.
The Betterment Loan is provided at a two (2%) interest rate for a period of 5, 10, 15 or 18 years. At the time of application there is no credit check required, although all municipal accounts must be paid up to date. All costs necessary to repair or replace a failed on-site system, including engineering and design can be included in the Betterment Loan.
Ipswich homeowners who have a septic system that has failed an Official Title 5 Inspection conducted by an Ipswich permitted System Inspector are eligible. A septic design approved by the Board of Health is needed before you can apply for a Betterment Loan.
The loan application is processed under the direction of Colleen E. Fermon, Director of Public Health /Betterment Program Administrator. If you are interested, contact the Ipswich Public Health Office at 978-356-6606 for more information or go to the Public Health webpage at www.ipswichma.gov.