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Changing Property Ownership Arrangements

If you hold a property jointly with someone else, it may become necessary for that property to be transferred into the name of one party. This could be because a joint owner has died, or if you wish to gift a property to someone else, such as a family member. Whatever the reason may be, our specialist property ownership solicitors are here to help.

At Glanvilles, we have an experienced team who can advise you on all the legal aspects of changing property arrangements. The advice we provide all of our clients is specifically tailored to their individual circumstances and what outcome they are looking to achieve.

While in certain situations, changing the ownership of a property may be a relatively straightforward matter, this is not necessarily always the case, which is why seeking expert conveyancing advice from a member of our team is crucial.

For practical advice about changing property ownership arrangements, get in touch with our residential conveyancing solicitors in Chichester, FarehamHavant or Petworth, email us at hello@glanvilles.co.uk or fill in our simple online enquiry form for a quick response.

How do property ownership transfers work?

Transferring a property following a death

In the case of Joint Tenants, a change of ownership is a relatively straightforward matter. On the death of one spouse (or partner), his or her interest in the property automatically passes to the survivor.

That being said, there are still some formalities that need to be followed for the process to be complete. It is necessary to inform HM Land Registry that one of the joint owners has died so that the title can be updated to remove the deceased person’s name. This is done by filling in a Deceased Joint Proprietor (DJP) form, with an official copy of the death certificate.

Glanvilles’ residential property solicitors can help you set up this arrangement, allowing you to avoid the cost and delays involved in obtaining a grant of representation (or ‘grant of probate’) on the death of the first joint tenant.

Transferring a property following divorce or separation

If a property is jointly owned by two or more people, but one or more names need to be removed from the title, there are various procedures that need to be followed. This typically occurs during a divorce or separation, but it can also happen if friends or family members are living together and someone wants to be released from the ownership.

When transferring a property into one person’s name, it is essential to complete a ‘Transfer of Whole Registered Title’ form and send it to HM Land Registry. This is sent alongside the appropriate fee and various identification forms. If there is a mortgage on the property, this will also need to be transferred into the remaining owner’s name.

If the transfer of property ownership does not form part of a divorce settlement, there may also be Stamp Duty Land Tax to pay, which is something our solicitors can advise you on if this is applicable.

For transfer of ownership matters that involve divorce or separation, we also work closely with our family law team to ensure that you have the exact support and guidance you need to make informed decisions about what the next chapter in your life will look like.

Transferring a property to a family member

There are a number of potential explanations for transferring the ownership of your property to a family member. Most commonly, this is done to reduce the amount of Inheritance Tax that will be due on the estate following the owner’s death, but it could also be done to provide your children with their inheritance early.

It is also possible to transfer the ownership of a property as a gift. This is separate to a Transfer of Equity, where the owner remains on the title.

There are a number of implications to gifting ownership of a property, particularly if you plan to continue living there, so you should always seek out advice from a member of our team if this is your intended plan.

Transferring a property into joint names

If you are the sole owner of a property, and you wish for someone else to be added to the title register (for example, a spouse or partner), this is entirely possible.

To do so, you will be required to fill out a ‘Transfer of Whole Registered Title’ to HM Land Registry, alongside a fee and ID forms.

Stamp Duty may be payable, and you will need the consent of your mortgage lender for the new joint owner to be added to the mortgage.

Transferring a property with Tenants-in-Common

An alternative to joint tenancy is Tenants-in-Common. This means that the property passes by Will (or intestacy) but not automatically to the surviving homeowner. Depending on circumstances, the advantages of such an arrangement are:

  • It can prevent children/stepchildren or other beneficiaries from losing out should a surviving spouse remarry or cohabit.
  • It gives you the freedom to gift your share of the property with directions as to what happens to the property after the occupant’s death.
  • If combined with an appropriate Will, it can maximise tax allowances.

Glanvilles can advise you on which ownership (Tenants-in-Common or Joint) best suits your needs and help you make any ownership changes that may be necessary.

Why choose Glanvilles’ property ownership solicitors?

At Glanvilles, we pride ourselves on our welcoming customer service, which we combine with our wealth of experience and knowledge in various residential property matters, including transfer of property ownership.

We are members of the Law Society Lexcel Accreditation Scheme. This is only awarded to law firms which regularly display the highest standards of customer care and legal practice management. This provides assurance that we will handle your property ownership matter carefully and efficiently, providing excellent value for money no matter how complex your case may appear.

Our conveyancing team are also members of the Law Society Conveyancing Quality Scheme Accreditation which is only maintained by firms which excel in residential property services. We will handle all legal aspects of your property ownership matter with meticulous attention to detail, ensuring that no stone is left unturned.

We are also members of Solicitors for the Elderly (SFE), a specialist group of lawyers with particular expertise supporting and providing advice to older and vulnerable people.

Glanvilles is independently regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

Get in touch with our residential property solicitors in Chichester, Fareham and Havant

If you would like further advice about changing property ownership, please do not hesitate to contact one of our offices in Chichester, FarehamHavant or Petworth. Our approachable understanding and expert team would be very happy to help.

Alternatively, please feel free to email us at hello@glanvilles.co.uk or fill in our simple online enquiry form for a quick response.