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When two or more people own a property together, the property can be held, either as 'tenants in common' or 'joint tenants'.
When you own a property as 'tenants in common', each owner owns a specific share of the property either in equal or unequal shares.
If one of the owners dies their share will form part of their estate and will not automatically belong to the survivor unlike 'joint tenants'.
When you own a property as 'joint tenants', each owner owns the whole property and neither owner has a specific share.
If one owner dies the survivor would automatically own the whole of the property regardless of what is stated in the Will of the deceased.
If you currently own property jointly as joint tenants, it is possible to change it so that it is held as tenants in common and vice versa. This will usually involve an application to the Land Registry. Sampson Solicitors can help if you wish to consider changing the ownership of your property.
When purchasing a property we will always advise you on the ownership of the property. If you are in any doubt about how your property is currently owned you should seek advice. Whether joint tenants or tenants in common is best for you comes down to your personal circumstances. It needs careful consideration of a number of complex and interrelated issues. We are happy to talk things through with you so that you understand the issues before taking any steps to make any changes.