Thinking of Buying a New Home? Are You Married? Learn How You Should Take Title…

Q. My wife and I are buying a house this fall. How should we take title?

A. There are different ways spouses can take title to a property:

Joint Tenants with Rights of Survivorship: Both you and your spouse own a 100% indivisible interest in your property.  Should one of you pass away before the other, your interest will automatically pass to the surviving spouse without having to go through the process of probate.

Tenants in Common: You and your spouse own a 50% divisible interest in your property.  At the time of death of either spouse, their interest can be left – by will or trust – to any other party of their choosing.  This type of ownership is quite often utilized by parties that are not married.

Another concern of ownership should be the Homestead right.  Whether or not a spouse is named on the deed, they are nonetheless entitled to a $100,000 interest in the primary residence and are required to sign the deed upon conveyance of the property.  This is a lifetime right, existing even after the passing of the record owner.  A Homestead Right may be terminated by affirmative release by the spouse – the signing of a “Release of Homestead Right” – or by deed.

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Published in: on March 31, 2011 at 10:53 am  Leave a Comment  

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