The Ins and Outs of Transferring Ownership of a Home

by PropertyBlawg on December 4, 2012

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Guest post from:; Property news author Ewan Robertson writes about the steps involved to transfer home ownership in England and Wales.

The Ins and Outs of Transferring Ownership of a Home

There are several reasons why people transfer ownership of properties. They give it away, leave it to a relative or a friend upon their (the owner’s) death or – more commonly – sell it on the open market. It’s also possible to transfer equity so that a home changes hands but one of the original owners remains on the title; for example, adding a name or transferring the title to sole ownership. This is used in the cases of marriage, civil partnership or just setting up a home together – and in the latter case – for divorces, separations and otherwise.

The process: what’s required to transfer a property?

Transferring property involves applying to the Land Registry with a TR1 form or application to transfer titles. This applies if you want to transfer the whole property, shares, adding owners or subtracting owners.

It’s important to note that properties under joint tenancy or tenancy in common require every owner’s authorisation before the transferral can be approved. You can find out what level of ownership you have by first checking the title deed. Sole owners do not have to confer with others prior to applying for transferral.

There are different deeds you can use to transfer your interest in the property. A quitclaim deed transfers ownership of the title in your possession at the time of ownership transfer, while a sale deed transfers the title without warranty regarding its validity, and finally, a warranty deed transfers ownership with guarantee of the title’s legitimacy.


Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) may be payable when land or property is transferred in exchange for anything of monetary value or that which is known as ‘consideration’. This can be cash or the value of an outstanding mortgage, and the SDLT is calculated differently depending on the value of the property and how the property is transferred.

Outstanding Mortgages

Research suggests that because homeowners are getting older (the average first-time buyer in the UK is 35 years old), over 100,000 homeowners aged 65 and over are still paying off their mortgages. When property under mortgage is transferred, the sum will need to be repaid either by remortgage or money supplied by the incoming owner before a discharge document (DS1) can be obtained and the transfer registered.

Meet with a legal professional

One of the simplest ways to avoid getting caught up in the intricacies of transferring a property is to speak to a property attorney or conveyancer. He or she will be able to advise you regarding the applicable laws in your county and arrange all the necessary paperwork ahead of the transfer.



Property Law Blogger at PropertyBlawg
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