Thinking about co-owning a rental property? That actually sounds like a good idea. Property co-ownership is a creative way of owning a rental property as it allows the owners to divide the costs of purchasing the property as well as its maintenance.

Property co-ownership has its many gains. One positive is that it lets you divide the costs and expenses of maintaining a rental home. Two, it will let you purchase a property by just half or a fraction (depending on the number of co-owners) of the cost. And three, you get to pay the mortgage faster as more than one person pays for it.

Legalities

Section 33(1) of the Property Law Act 1974 (Qld) stipulates that:

(1) Any property and any interest, whether legal or equitable, in any  property may be held by 2 or more persons—

     (a) as joint tenants; or

     (b) as tenants in common.

(2) Any 2 or more persons acquiring land after the commencement of this Act in circumstances in which, but for the passing of this Act, they would have acquired the land as coparceners shall acquire such land as tenants in common and not as coparceners.

Co-ownership is a more adjustable form of owning a property. Obligations can even be agreed upon by co-owners to make sure that all parties are on the same page with regard to the parameters involved.

As co-owners (joint tenants), the entire interest of the property is under joint ownership and none of the parties own anything individually. If one of the co-owners dies, their share will be automatically transferred to the surviving co-owner (Rights of survivorship).

Risks Involved

Like in any kind of business partnership, a co-ownership agreement should be secured prior to purchasing a property. This will serve as your insurance in any case that issues between the co-owners will arise. Moreso, a co-ownership agreement will serve as a guideline on how the property should be managed in order to avoid disagreements.

Here are the possible issues that may arise:

  • Disagreement between co-owners about the property – More often than not, these disagreements would be about the property, specifically on how it should be run; whether or not to sell the property, mortgage repayments, how the income should be split, whether or not refinance, etc.
  • Co-owners’ relationship turns sour – Sometimes, the reason could pertain to a strain on the co-owners’ personal relationship.

Enlisting Professional Help

Co-owning a property investment is a tough job requiring a sound mind and the ability to make rational choices. It is crucial to remain impartial when it comes to decision making especially when you have to collaborate with one or more partners. It’s important to get expert advice from a property manager to guide you through it.