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If I was to make renovations and then decide to sell (anticipating a profit), what is the current short-term capital gains rate vs. short-term rates?

Short term capital gains rates are equal to your marginal tax rate. I.e. its taxed as regular income, and can indeed push you into a higher tax bracket. Its income like any other.

Are there local capital gains rates in Maine or Massachusetts?

Mass has a 12% tax on short term capital gains (and some collectibles), but I don't know if it applies to real estate or just securities.

Where could I look to find this info myself?

IRS publication 550: Capital Gains and losses:

Mass Department of Revenue:

Maine Revenue Services:
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