Living the San Francisco Dream


FAQ #2: How Should we Hold Title to our Property?

FAQ: How should we hold title to our property?

First, I must tell you I am neither an attorney nor a C.P.A. and can't give you specific advice about what is best for you and your particular situation. I can, however, give you the following recap about some of the ways of holding title th
at are commonly used in California when more than one person owns property:

These include:

  • Tenancy in Common - ownership can be divided into any number of interests; interests don't have to be equal; each co-owner has a separate legal title to his/her undivided interest and each interest may be conveyed separately. Upon co-owner's death, his interest passes by will to his heirs. There is no right of survivorship.
  • Joint Tenancy - ownership interests cannot be divided; there is only one title to the whole property; all parties have equal right of possession. Conveyance by one co-owner without the others breaks the joint tenancy. Upon co-owner's death, her interest ends and cannot be willed; the survivor owns the property by survivorship.
  • Community Property - available only to husband and wife or domestic partners; equal ownership interests and equal right of possession; separate interests cannot be conveyed.
  • Community Property with Right of Survivorship - a blend of Joint Tenancy and Community Property, this is available to husband and wife when interest is created on or after 7/1/2001, or domestic partners created on or after 1/1/05. Similar to community property, but upon a co-owner's death, decedent's interest ends and cannot be willed.

To learn what's right for you, and the differences in tax treatment, consult your attorney or C.P.A.

--- Come for a visit; Stay for a lifetime!

Lottie Kendall, Realtor®


CA DRE#10215160; 650-465-4547






Comment balloon 1 commentLottie Kendall • May 26 2012 08:27AM


Great suggestions Lottie, if I may let you and your readers know as well I take rental investment proerties in LLC so as to protect mysef from law suits.

Posted by Charles Stallions Property Manager, Pensacola, Pace & Gulf Breeze Property Management (Charles Stallions Real Estate Services) over 8 years ago