Ownership Tenancy Definitions
Florida recognizes four basic types of ownership: sole ownership, tenants by the entirety, joint tenants, and tenants in common.
Sole Ownership in Florida
In this type of ownership, one individual or entity owns the property completely with no other tenants.
While this may seem straightforward on its face, there is a slight wrinkle that may affect sole ownership. While Florida does not recognize community property, it does recognize the homestead doctrine. If a property is a homestead, the non-owner spouse must sign the deed selling or conveying the property. If the property is not a homestead, the deed must specifically state the “property is not the homestead of the grantor, mortgagor, or immediate family.”
Tenant by the Entirety in Florida
This is a form of ownership specifically created for spouses. In Florida, spouses have the option of owning property by the entirety, which functions like a joint tenancy in that the surviving spouse will immediately take ownership of the property on the death of the other spouse. If a deed uses language like “husband and wife” or “married couple,” Florida will presume the spouses intended to create a tenancy by the entirety unless specifically stated otherwise.
Joint Tenants in Florida
Florida recognizes joint tenancy with right of survivorship as a common form of joint ownership. This form allows multiple people or entities to own a title interest to the property and comes with various rights and responsibilities. Joint tenancies with right of survivorship involve all parties having equal ownership and the right to assume another owner’s interest in the event the other owner dies.
Tenancy in Common in Florida
Florida also recognizes tenancy in common as a form of co-ownership. Tenancy in common allows multiple owners to own title in a property, but rather than owning equally, the owners can set varying ownership percentages. For example, one owner could own 51% of the property, with the other owning 49%. Additionally, an owner’s share would pass to the owner’s heirs upon death, rather than passing to the other tenants in common.