Jeffrey W. Sacks

Jeff Sacks is a leading community development attorney. His clients include large community development corporations, senior housing providers and housing authorities as well as a variety of large institutional service providers. He often represents nonprofit organizations that are embarking on major real estate projects that allow their organizations to deliver their services in new and innovative ways.

What do you focus on?

Low-income housing tax credits and historic rehabilitation tax credits

I assist my clients in using federal low-income housing and historic tax credits to develop affordable housing and mixed-use developments. Given the multiple funding sources necessary to complete any project today including federal resources from HUD as well as state and local funds, I work with our developer clients to assure that all of these funders work together to allow for the successful completion of these projects with the most efficient deal structure.

New markets tax credits

Some of my largest and most complex projects have involved substantial investments in very poor communities utilizing the new markets tax credit program. These projects, which have included major new urban medical centers, a supercomputing project as well as smaller educational facilities, can be the catalyst for additional neighborhood investment and substantial job creation.

Public housing

I have worked with a range of public housing authorities in the transformation of some of the most outdated public housing projects in the Commonwealth into new and vital communities that continue to serve their low-income residents. I served as a public housing authority commissioner for more than twenty years, and in 2013 worked on new legislation in Massachusetts to modernize and reform the Commonwealth’s public housing system.

Nonprofit organizations

Much of my work involves advising nonprofit boards of directors about the most efficient and effective legal and financial approaches to fulfilling their corporate missions. A central part of my work is framing the legal options and documentation to boards of directors.

Community preservation

I served as the first chair of the Newton Community Preservation Committee and have worked with that program for more than ten years. This unique state and local partnership provides funding exclusively for community housing, open space preservation, historic preservation and recreation facilities in cities and towns across the Commonwealth.

What do you see on the horizon?

I am working on new types of joint ventures among nonprofit organizations and governmental agencies to improve the delivery of housing and other community services. In a period of dwindling direct government support for community development activities, consolidation of services and the creation of new service delivery models are crucial with organizations working together in new ways.

Transactions & Financings

Senior Housing News | July 22, 2020

Nixon Peabody client Hebrew SeniorLife (HSL) was included in this roundup of notable deals for closing on the financing of two Boston-area properties that will help the organization with its post-pandemic future. Affordable Housing & Real Estate partner Jeff Sacks, and associates Ali Walendziak and Alexander Rosso were mentioned for representing HSL in the Randolph financing. Jeff Sacks and Affordable Housing & Real Estate associate Julie Hancock Stande were noted for representing HSL in the Brookline transaction. All the attorneys are based in Boston.

ATB clarifies tax method for ‘entry fee communities’

Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly | August 22, 2019

Boston Affordable Housing and Real Estate partner Jeff Sacks wrote this contributed article analyzing a ruling by the Appellate Tax Board on the proper method of determining real estate taxes for senior living facilities that use an entry fee model. Boston law clerk Thomas Jackson contributed to the article.

Wellfleet housing ‘can happen here’

Wicked Local Provincetown | March 20, 2019

Boston Affordable Housing & Real Estate partner Jeff Sacks is quoted in this article about a proposed affordable housing development in Wellfleet.

Planning agency can challenge foreclosure

Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly | December 26, 2018

Boston Affordable Housing & Real Estate partner Jeff Sacks is quoted in this article on the ability of municipal planning agencies to respond to possible foreclosure of affordable housing properties.

SJC limits public funding of church preservation

Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly | August 15, 2018

Boston Affordable Housing & Real Estate partner Jeff Sacks wrote this contributed article analyzing a recent decision by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court that “likely will lead to greater scrutiny of all historic preservation projects involving church properties.”


Jeffrey W. Sacks



Phone: 617-345-1056

Fax: 866-439-3852

Yale Law School, J.D.

Brown University, B.A.


Jeffrey was selected, through a peer-review survey, for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© 2021 in the field of Real Estate Law. Jeffrey has been listed in Best Lawyers since 2012.

Additionally, Jeff has been recognized as a “New England Super Lawyer” in Real Estate based on a peer-review survey by Boston Magazine (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2011, and 2012).

Jeff Sacks served as a commissioner of the Newton Housing Authority from 1992 to 2014, and also served on Governor Deval Patrick’s Public Housing Reform Commission. He serves on DHCD’s Public Housing Advisory Committee, and as a director of the Citizens Housing and Planning Association, Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly, and the Lawyers Clearinghouse on Affordable Housing and Homelessness. Mr. Sacks is also a director of the statewide Massachusetts Community Preservation Coalition.

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