Tenancy in Common Title: Pros and Cons

Aug 11, 2022 | Holding Title

Individuals and businesses have different options for owning property. One option is a tenancy in common title. A tenancy in common title is a way for multiple parties to own shares in the same property.

Unlike a joint tenancy, the parties to a tenancy in common can hold unequal shares of the property. While the shares can be unequal financially, each owner has equal ownership as it concerns occupying and using the property. This agreement does not have the right to survivorship like a joint tenancy.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of this type of ownership structure? Read on to find out!

Pros and Cons of Tenancy in Common Title


The top advantage is that it makes property purchases possible when other arrangements are unsuitable. It can bring parties together to split costs, but they all still have individual ownership of their financial share.

Another benefit is the allowance for unequal shares. With a joint tenancy, the owners all share ownership equally. It is almost as if they are one entity for the purpose of ownership. A joint tenancy can have parties with different percentages of ownership. However, all owners still have equal rights to use and occupy the property.

Individual ownership is a benefit as well. Each party owns its share individually from the other owners. They can sell it as they please or use it as collateral for a loan. An owner could even will their share of a tenancy in common to their heirs.


One of the primary drawbacks to a tenancy in common is that it does not have the right to survivorship. When one party to a joint tenancy dies, their share goes to the remaining tenants. With the tenancy in common, that does not happen. If the plan is for the remaining tenants to maintain ownership, a tenancy in common might not be suitable.

There is also equal financial liability among the tenants. Even if one tenant holds a 70% share while the other holds 30%, they still share in all debts equally. If one owner has financial problems and can’t pay their share of taxes, the other owners will be liable.

Another issue can occur if one owner wants to sell. If the other owners disagree, the one owner could petition the court to force a sale. They could also petition the court to partition the property. These situations can adversely affect the shares and rights of other owners.

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