; Holding Title

Holding Title

Before you reach the closing day, you will want to make a decision as to how you will “hold title” to the property. This decision has legal, tax and estate planning ramifications. Therefore, it may be prudent to consult an attorney or certified public accountant (CPA). The following information is supplied for informational purposes and should not be relied upon as legal definitions.

Buying Alone

Sole Ownership
Living Trust

A living trust is created while an individual is alive and gives the individual control of the distribution of his or her estate. The individual transfers ownership of his or her property and assets into the trust.

Buying with Others

Tenancy in Common

Enables each partner in the property to sell, lease or will to his/her heirs that share of the property belonging to him/her.

Joint Tenancy

Property owned by multiple individuals where if one of the owners dies, the remaining owners acquire the share of the deceased owner automatically.

Community Property

Property owned equally between a husband and wife. Each must sign all agreements and documents of transfer.

Additional Ways to Hold Title

Corporation

A corporation is a legal entity, created under state law, consisting of one or more shareholders but regarded under law as having essentially the same as those of an individual. The entity has continuous existence until it is dissolved according to legal procedures. Land owned by a corporation cannot be attached for personal debts or judgments rendered against any of its shareholders.

A Partnership

A partnership is an association of two or more persons who can carry on business for profit. A partnership may hold title to real property in the name of the partnership with partners having an equal or an unequal interest in the property.

A Trust

A trust is an arrangement whereby legal title to property is transferred by the grantor (or trustor) to a person called a trustee, to be held and managed by that person for the benefit of the people specified in the trust agreement, called beneficiaries.

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