How you title property is an important consideration as part of your overall financial well-being and asset protection. One option for married couples to think about is Tenancy by the Entirety (TBE) registration. TBE allows spouses to jointly own property with an equal, undivided interest in that property. There are some key advantages to this type of titling.
What Is Tenants by the Entirety?
When property is titled as Tenancy by the Entirety it is jointly owned by two spouses. A distinguishing factor is that one spouse may not sell their interest in the property without the permission of the other spouse. Below you will find some of the pros and cons of this type of property ownership.
- TBE registration offers enhanced creditor protection given that the ownership is tied to both spouses as a couple. If only one spouse is liable, the assets owned as TBE should be protected. However, if both spouses are tied to a debt that a creditor is seeking legal remedy for, the property titled TBE may not be protected.
- Property titled as TBE passes without the need for probate upon the first spouse’s death.
- Property titled TBE cannot be sold unless both spouses agree, protecting each spouse from potential unknown changes by the other spouse.
- TBE is not available in all states.
- TBE property is not protected from creditors if the debt or liability is attached to property in which both spouses are responsible.
- TBE is only available to married couples. If a spouse dies or there is a divorce, the TBE property titling is no longer available.
- Both spouses must agree to any transactions of property owned as TBE.
It’s critical to consider the way you title property as part of your overall financial planning. Tenancy by the Entirety has many advantageous uses if available in your state and should be a consideration for jointly owned property. At SageVest, we review all aspects of your finances and work hand in hand with clients to lay out the advantages and disadvantages of different ownership types to help determine what may be best in their specific situation. Please contact us to discuss our services in greater detail.