joint own­er­ship

The Advertiser - Real Estate - - Open House -

MANY prop­er­ties are owned by more than one in­di­vid­ual or en­tity and this of­ten is re­ferred to as ‘‘joint own­er­ship’’. There are two very dis­tinct types of joint own­er­ship – joint ten­ancy and ten­ancy in com­mon.

Joint ten­ants own prop­erty in equal shares, de­pend­ing on the num­ber of own­ers. For ex­am­ple, if there are two joint own­ers, each owns half the prop­erty. If there are six joint own­ers, each would own one­sixth.

When a prop­erty owned by joint ten­ants is sold, each joint ten­ant (or owner) has an equal in­ter­est in that sale and each is re­quired in­di­vid­u­ally to sign the sale con­tract.

Should a joint ten­ant die, their in­ter­est in the prop­erty au­to­mat­i­cally passes to the sur­viv­ing owner(s).

Ten­ants in com­mon may own prop­erty in un­equal shares and t his t ype of own­er­ship is usu­ally es­tab­lished at the time of pur­chase.

The spe­cific shares can be al­tered at any time, sub­ject to all par­ties agree­ing on the change.

This type of own­er­ship of­ten is used with in­vest­ment prop­er­ties and each ten­ant in com­mon is able to deal with their in­ter­est in­di­vid­u­ally.

This means they are able to leave their por­tion of own­er­ship in their will to any­one they choose and the other ten­ants in com­mon have no le­gal claim to it.

When buy­ing a prop­erty, make sure you con­sider the type of own­er­ship you wish to es­tab­lish.

If you do not specif­i­cally stip­u­late a re­quest for ten­ants in com­mon on a trans­fer of ti­tle, then joint ten­ancy will pre­vail.

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