Buying a Los Angeles Home? How are you going to take Title?

Originally posted on February 15, 2013

You may be considering buying Los Angeles real estate and may have luckily have identified a home and gone into escrow.  Now you need to decide how you are going to take title, especially if you a taking it jointly. There are various way to take title, including:Decide how to take title when thinking of buying a Los Angeles home


  • A man or woman who is not married
    Example: John Doe, a single man.
  • An Unmarried Man/Woman
    A man or woman, who having been married, is legally divorced.
    Example: John Doe, an unmarried man.
  • A Married Man/Woman, as His/Her Sole and Separate Property
    When a married man or woman wishes to acquire title as their sole and separate property, the spouse must consent and relinquish all right, title and interest in the property by deed or other written agreement.
    Example: John Doe, a married man, as his sole and separate property.


  • Community Property
    Property acquired by husband and wife, or either during marriage, other than by gift, bequest, devise, descent or as the separate property of either is presumed community property.
    Example: John Doe and Mary Doe, husband and wife, as community property.
    Example: John Doe and Mary Doe, husband and wife.
    Example: John Doe, a married man
  • Joint Tenancy
    Joint and equal interests in land owned by two or more individuals created under a single instrument with right of survivorship.
    Example: John Doe and Mary Doe, husband and wife, as joint tenants.
  • Tenancy in Common
    Under tenancy in common, the co-owners own undivided interests; but unlike joint tenancy, these interests need not be equal in quantity and may arise at different times. There is no right of survivorship; each tenant owns an interest, which on his or her death vests in his or her heirs or devisee.
    Example: John Doe, a single man, as to an undivided 3/4th interest, and George Smith, a single man as to an undivided 1/4th interest, as tenants in common.
  • Trust
    Title to real property in California may be held in trust. The trustee of the trust holds title pursuant to the terms of the trust for the benefit of the trustor/beneficiary.

You are advised to consult your accountant or attorney when deciding how to take Title as there a significant legal consequences involved in the way you hold Title.

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