What is a Severance of Tenancy?

What is a Severance of Tenancy?

What is a Severance of Tenancy?

Buying a home for the first time can be daunting. This can be made more stressful if the parties buying the property have put a disproportionate amount of funds into the purchase or are purchasing it as an investment. How the proceeds of sale of the property are to be divided is the last thing that buyers normally think about, most couples will usually purchase their property together as joint tenants but putting an agreement in place at the outset can avoid problems later.

Joint Tenants

If the property is owned as Joint Tenants then the whole property, and the subsequent proceeds of sale if the property is sold will belong to both owners. They do not have separate shares which they can sell or leave in a Will. If one person dies then the right of survivorship applies. The survivor then becomes the sole owner of the whole property. For each person to own a specific share of the property the joint tenancy would need to be severed.

Severance of Tenancy

A Joint Tenancy can be turned into a Tenancy in Common by severing the Joint Tenancy on the property concerned. This entails serving a written notice of severance to the other joint tenants or in other ways which would suggest that severance has taken place for the property to become held as Tenants in Common.

Tenants in Common

Tenants in Common is where each owner owns a specific share of the property. These shares can be in unequal portions, and can be freely transferred to other owners both during life and via a will.

If you have any questions or need any further advice, please do not hesitate to contact us and we will do our best to accommodate you.

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