• Fri. Jul 19th, 2024

Here Are Common Methods of Holding a Property Title

Louise Villalobos

ByLouise Villalobos

Jul 5, 2024
Here Are Common Methods of Holding a Property Title

Every single day, people are buying real estate for various purposes. Some buy properties to venture into the rental business, while others for their primary residence. Ownership of any property is represented by what’s called a title.

There are several ways of holding a title. This guide discusses the most common ones to help you decide which is ideal.

Defining Real Estate


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Before discussing the methods of holding a title, it is crucial we understand the term real estate. Simply put, real estate can be a piece of land or a structure built on that land. Regarding structures, they are divided into two: residential and commercial. Residential structures include homes, apartments, and condominiums, which are all designed for residential living. Commercial properties, on the other hand, feature structures like warehouses, shopping centers, and office buildings.

Defining a Title

A title is a document that contains the name of the owner/owners of a particular real estate property. It is usually issued by a country’s land registry after a property has been sold to a buyer. As mentioned earlier, there are numerous ways of holding a title. They include tenancy in common, joint tenancy, sole ownership, and tenants by entirety. Each method carries its own benefits and disadvantages.

Let’s now dive deeper into each method.

Joint Tenancy

This type of title holding happens when two or more individuals jointly hold a property title and share the same rights to that property. If a partner dies, their next of kin enjoy the rights of a title holder.

Advantages of Joint Tenancy

1. Partners’ next of kin earn the rights to the jointly-owned property.

2. People do not have to be related or married to jointly own a property.

3. Financial responsibilities are shared among partners.

Disadvantages of Joint Tenancy

1. Any partner who wants to use the jointly-owned real estate for financial gain is required to seek approval from other partners.

2. A court can allow a debt collector to sell a portion of the jointly-owned property to recover money from one of the joint owners in case of loan default.

Tenancy in Common

Tenancy in Common occurs when a group of people holds a property title but with an unequal share of ownership. For example, Bob, Mary, and John may own 40%, 35%, and 25% of the property, respectively. However, it is worth mentioning that the co-owners have equal rights to access the entire property. Also, each co-owner has an individual title representing their share of the property.

Advantages of Tenancy in Common

1. Owners can use their share of the real estate as collateral to obtain loans.

2. A debt collector can only sell the piece of property owned by the partner who has defaulted on a loan.

Disadvantages of Tenancy in Common

1. A co-owner cannot transfer their property ownership without the approval of other partners.

2. If one co-owner is unable to pay taxes related to the property, other co-owners become liable.

Tenants by Entirety

Only legally married people can hold title through tenants by entirety. This method assumes that a couple is one individual, and the title gets transferred to the surviving partner when the other passes on.

Advantages of Tenants by Entirety

1. Since the surviving partner automatically assumes full ownership when their spouse dies, then legal battles are minimized.

Disadvantages Tenants by Entirety

1. It is impossible to legally split a property owned through tenants by entirety.

Sole Ownership

When a single entity or individual fully owns a property, this scenario is referred to as sole ownership. That means the entity or individual solely holds the title. Sole ownership is popular among single women and men.

Advantages of Sole Ownership

1. The title holder can transfer ownership without seeking approval from others.

Disadvantages of Sole Ownership

1. When the title holder dies without writing a legal document like a will specifying the next of kin, it becomes difficult to transfer ownership of the property.

Louise Villalobos

Louise Villalobos

Louise Villalobos is an adept writer, renowned for her compelling articles that illuminate and engage. Her prowess in breaking down intricate subjects provides readers with clarity and nuance. With a vast and varied portfolio, Louise has solidified her standing as a distinguished voice in contemporary journalism.