Tenancy – How To Hold Title

Hello this is Deirdre Brown your settlement agent serving the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia. Today we’re going to talk about how to hold tenancy if you plan to co-own a property. This is very important because depending on how you hold tenancy or take title will determine how the property can be transferred either while you’re alive or upon your death.  

If you hold tenancy as tenants in common, each person holds a share but it does not have to be an equal share. So you can have one person holding sixty percent,  thirty five percent or five percent. Each person can then transfer their shares of the title during their lifetime and/or their shares will be inherited by their heirs upon their death. 

Another way to hold tenancy is called joint tenants with the right of survivorship.  This allows two people to hold property equally amongst themselves. If there are three people. Each would hold one third interest. It is always equal shares being held.  If there is a death the shares go to the surviving members and therefore you can avoid probate. 

Another way to hold tenancy is called tenants by the entirety and this is reserved only for people who are married or in a civil union or domestic partnership that is recognized by the state the property is located in. This also gives you the right of survivorship. If one spouse dies then the other spouse would immediately receive 100% title in the property without having to go through probate. 

If you have more title related questions please reach out to us at lexicontitle.com

If you have any questions or comments please reach out!

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