Residential Real Estate
There are two ways in which property may be held by two or more owners.
Your home is often the most significant asset that you will own during your lifetime. If you are buying it with someone else you should ensure that both parties’ interests are protected.
As joint owners, you hold the property in one of two ways – either as Joint Tenants or as Tenants in Common.
If you hold the property as joint tenants, on the death of one of the tenants the property automatically passes to the remaining tenants until there is only one tenant left. This tenant will then own the property outright. Holding the property as joint tenants will override any provisions you have made in your will about the distribution of this part of your estate.
If you hold the property as tenants in common, each tenant will own a predefined proportion of the property. For two people this could be 50 / 50. or could be 90 / 10 or anywhere in between! Often it will depend on what proportion each party has contributed to the purchase price but this is not always the case. If you are considering holding the property as tenants in common you must make a will or your share will pass under the intestacy rules which may not be how you would like it distributed.