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Hudkins February 26th, 2018

Tenancy Types In New Hampshire

When two or more people buy real estate together, they enter an agreement called a tenancy agreement. The tenancy status dictates what will happen when one owner passes away. There are two types of tenancy in New Hampshire and each comes with different rights and requirements.

Tenancy Relationships

  • Joint Tenancy with Right of Survivorship
  • Tenancy in Common

Joint Tenancy with Right of Survivorship is a tenancy in which the interest of a co-owned property passes on to the remaining owner(s) in the event of an owner death. In this type of tenancy, if an owner dies, his/her interest in the property essentially dies with him/her and the property interest is given to the remaining owner(s) without requiring probate of the deceased owner’s estate.

Joint tenancy with right of survivorship tenancy is common for the ownership of a home between a married couple, a parent and child or a similar situation in which both parties want for the interest of the property to stay with the immediate owners in the event of a death.

Tenancy in Common is the term used to refer to two or more people who purchase a property and own separate and distinct shares of the property. The amount of property owned by each individual may differ in size based on the amount of down payment provided by each tenant to purchase the property.

Tenancy in common ownership does not provide a right to survivorship, which means that if an owner dies, title to the property does not automatically vest in the other owner(s). Instead, the deceased owner’s property interest would be owned by his/her estate, and would pass according to the terms of the deceased owner’s will or, in the case of no will, the intestacy statute.

Illustrations of Tenancy Options

If Mary and Robert owned property as joint tenants with rights of survivorship, immediately upon Robert’s death, Mary would own the entire property without having to pursue any legal, probate or other action.  It would not even be necessary to redraft the deed.  At the time Mary sells the property, it will be necessary to record a certified Death Certificate for Robert at the Registry of Deeds.

If Jane and Sam owned property as tenants in common, their ownership interest could be divided either 50/50, 90/10, 70/30 or any other fractional interest that they may desire.  If Sam died, his fractional interest would pass to his estate (and not to Jane) and Sam’s heirs would inherit his portion of the property.

Before determining which type of tenancy is best for you, consult a real estate or estate planning attorney to review your options.

This Blog Post was co-authored by Attorneys Martha L. Prizio and Jacqueline M. Hudkins

Hudkins Law was founded in 2006 by Jacqueline M. Hudkins.  The firm provides title and settlement services for residential and commercial real estate transactions.  Each real estate transaction is managed by a team of Attorneys and Paralegals to guarantee continuous coverage throughout the entire closing process and combines the expertise of Real Estate, Title, Trust, Estate Planning and Corporate Attorneys.  The firm employs nine Attorneys and ten paralegals and maintains offices in Windham NH, Concord NH, Hampton, NH, New London, NH, Keene, NH, Norwich VT, & Andover, MA.