Florida’s population continues to grow, as does purchase activity in its local real estate markets. Whether you are looking to invest in Florida real estate or purchase a first home, properly researching the ins and outs of the process is crucial. With a thriving real estate market, it’s essential to understand the different ways to take title to real estate in Florida. Our Florida real estate team at Farshchian Law P.A. explains more in this article.
These are six common methods of holding title in Florida:
- Corporate Entities (LLCs and Corporations)
Taking title to real estate through a corporate entity, such as a limited liability company (LLC) or corporation, can provide numerous benefits. For example, corporate entities offer personal liability protection, ease of transferability, and potential tax benefits. An LLC is a flexible structure that offers liability protection for its owners, while corporations provide a more formal arrangement but also offer a separate legal existence. When setting up a corporate entity to hold real estate, it is important to work with an attorney and an accountant to structure the company in such a way as to ensure liability protection and to receive the most optimal tax benefits.
When two or more individuals own real estate as tenants-in-common, each owner holds an undivided interest in the property. This means that each owner has the right to use and enjoy the entire property, but the property is not divided into separate parts. Each owner holds their own interest individually. Tenants-in-common also have the right to sell or transfer their own interest in the property, and if one owner dies, their interest in the property passes to their heirs. Therefore, this type of ownership does not avoid probate.
- Single Ownership
Single ownership is the simplest form of ownership. It is where one individual holds title to the property. This type of ownership provides complete control over the property, but no protections or other benefits come with this form of ownership, and probate is not avoided.
- Joint Tenant with Rights of Survivorship
Joint tenancy with rights of survivorship is a type of ownership where two or more individuals hold an equal interest in the property. In the event of the death of one joint tenant, their interest in the property automatically passes to the surviving joint tenant(s). This form of ownership provides an efficient way to pass on property to the surviving owner(s) without going through the probate process.
- Life Estate Deeds
A life estate deed is a type of ownership where one individual (the life tenant) holds the right to use and occupy the property during their lifetime. After the life tenant passes away, the property passes to the beneficiaries named in the life estate deed. This type of ownership provides a way to transfer property to future generations while still allowing the life tenant to use and occupy the property during their lifetime.
- Enhanced Life Estate Deeds (a/k/a Lady Birds Deeds)
An enhanced life estate deed, also known as a “Lady Bird” deed, is a type of life estate deed that provides the life tenant with additional rights. With an enhanced life estate deed, the life tenant has the right to sell or transfer their interest in the property or even to mortgage the property without the need for the consent of the remaindermen (i.e., the future beneficiaries of the property). For more information about the advantages of Enhanced Life Estate Deeds, click here.
Contact Our Florida Real Estate Attorneys Today
Taking title to real estate in Florida can be a complex process, but understanding the different ways to hold title can help make the process smoother. Whether you plan to take or transfer title via single ownership, as a part of a joint tenancy, as a life estate holder, or hold title through a corporate entity, it’s helpful to consider the benefits and drawbacks of each method. The Florida real estate attorneys at Farshchian Law P.A. can help you navigate the process and determine the best form of taking or transferring title to your property. We will also help to prepare the deed of conveyance to ensure that the deed follows the formalities of Florida law and accurately reflects the way you wish to hold title.