Tenants in Common Agreement for Married Couples

When it comes to owning property as a married couple, there are different ways to hold title, one of which is tenants in common. This type of ownership can be beneficial in various situations, especially when couples want to maintain their individual rights to a portion of the property.

What is a Tenants in Common Agreement?

A tenants in common agreement is a legal document that outlines the ownership percentage and rights of each owner while holding title to property as tenants in common. This agreement is essential, as it establishes the ground rules for how the property will be owned and managed if the marriage is dissolved or if one spouse passes away.

Benefits of Tenants in Common for Married Couples

– Retains individual rights: With tenants in common, each spouse retains their individual rights to a portion of the property. This can be beneficial if one spouse wants to sell their share or leave it to someone other than the other spouse.

– Flexible ownership percentages: Tenants in common can choose to own the property in equal or unequal percentages, depending on their financial contributions or other considerations. This allows couples to customize their ownership to fit their specific needs.

– Protection from creditors: If one spouse has significant debt or legal liabilities, their creditors cannot seize the entire property because the other spouse`s share is technically separate.

– Estate planning: Tenants in common can designate their share of the property to someone other than their spouse, such as children from a previous relationship or other family members. This can be a crucial element of estate planning.

Important Elements to Include in the Agreement

When drafting a tenants in common agreement, there are a few essential elements that need to be included:

– Ownership percentages: Specify the percentage of ownership for each spouse, which can be equal or unequal.

– Rights and obligations: Outline the rights and obligations of each spouse in regards to the property, such as the right to use and occupy the property and the responsibility to pay for maintenance and repairs.

– Dispute resolution: Establish a mechanism for resolving disputes between the spouses, such as mediation or arbitration.

– Buyout provisions: Include provisions for buying out the other spouse`s share if one spouse wants to sell their portion of the property.

– Termination: Specify the conditions that would cause the tenants in common agreement to terminate, such as the death of one spouse or the sale of the property.


A tenants in common agreement can be an excellent option for married couples who want to maintain their individual rights to a portion of the property. By customizing their ownership percentages, managing their liabilities, and setting out their rights and obligations, couples can enjoy a flexible and secure approach to property ownership. It`s essential to work with a legal expert when drafting a tenants in common agreement to ensure that it`s legally binding and meets your needs.