Joint tenants and tenants in common

July 6, 2018

Are you thinking of moving in with your partner? It may be useful to know the difference between joint tenants and tenants in common. Informing HM Land Registry of which type of ownership you would like is very important.

Understanding both types of ownership is vital because they can have a massive impact if one owner were to pass away or your relationship ends.

Joint tenants have equal rights to the whole property and if one owner dies, the ownership automatically goes to the other owner. This is important as if you have a child they may not have a right to your house, as you cannot pass it on in your will.

Tenants in common can own different shares of the property. If one owner were to die,  then their share of the property does not automatically go to the other owner. You can pass on your share of the property in your will to your children etc.

It’s possible to change from one ownership type to another along with being able to change from sole ownership. This is commonly called ‘transferring ownership’.

Moving from joint tenants to tenants in common is frequently used in the event of a divorce, separation and if the owner wishes to leave the property to somebody in their will.

Conversely, changing from tenants in common to joint tenants is often used when couples get married and would like to have equal rights to the property.

Our experienced team of conveyancers can help answer any legal queries you may have about property ownership in England and Wales.

The information provided in all of our blogs reflects only a narrative of some elements to consider on the topic. The blogs do not contain considered legal advice and should not be relied upon as advice. Please see our website terms and conditions for full details of our disclaimer. If you are interested in obtaining advice, please contact one of our lawyers who will be happy and able to advise you on your own particular circumstances.