Declarations of Trust

When you buy a property jointly with another party it is important at the outset to think about how you would want the equity in the property to be split between you.

Not only will this have an effect on how your ownership will need to be registered, but this can also avoid difficult conversations and costly litigation down the line.

If you do not want to own the equity in the property equally, or you wish to leave your equity to someone other than your co-owner on your death, then you must hold the property as tenants in common.

By holding the property as tenants in common you can each specify your share in the equity and on your death this will pass in accordance with the terms of your Will. It is therefore vital to also ensure that your Will is up to date. For more information on why it is so important to have an up to date Will please click here.

There may be various reasons why co-owners choose to separate their shares in the property.

This may be for the simple reason that one co-owner is putting in more money than the other to the purchase of the property and wants to ensure that they receive those funds back in the event of a sale.

Alternatively, one party may be paying more in terms of mortgage and bills as ongoing costs and may therefore wish to state that they own a greater share in the property than the other party.

The relationship between the co-owners will often dictate how the equity is divided, for example friends or business partners will likely want to specify their shares in the property so that they can ensure this is left to their own family members on their death.

In order to document these shares co-owners should enter into a declaration of trust.

A declaration of trust is a contract between co-owners which clearly sets out the parties intentions at the time of the purchase.

If a dispute ever arose in the future the Court would use the declaration of trust as the starting point and there would need to be strong evidence to show that the position outlined had since been varied.

How much does a Declarations of Trust cost?

 

Included 

Our Fee

Basic

  • Record percentage split

£250 plus VAT

Intermediate

  • All included with a basic package + record a fixed fee return

£300 plus VAT

Advanced

  • All included with a intermediate package +
  • Return on investment (interest) and/or return of costs such as mortgage repayments and improvements

£500 plus VAT

The fee is payable upfront and you will be invoiced on sending the document to you to sign.

What is excluded from the price:

  • Advice can only be given if acting for one party otherwise instructions will be taken on a drafting only basis
  • If there is an existing charge over the property, SDLT could be payable.  Please speak with us to understand if this will effect you.  Even if there is no SDLT to pay, a SDLT return may need to be filed with HMRC and there is a cost of £75 + VAT to deal with this
  • Legal advice outside of the service requested

Disbursements:

We will need to get an up to date copy of the title for a fee of £3 from Land Registry and, if there is no property transaction alongside the declaration of trust, there will be a fee of £20 to register this with Land Registry.

Disbursements are payable before we incur the cost.

How long will it take?

We can provide a draft of your document within 7 days of receiving your instructions and funds on account although this can often be sooner.  If you have any specific timescales you need to work towards, please let us know.

What should I expect?

  1. We will ask you to confirm your instructions in writing
  2. We will take the fees upfront
  3. We will obtain a copy of the title for the property
  4. We will send you a draft for approval
  5. We will arrange for you to execute the deed and, when ready for this to be registered against the title of the property

What are disbursements?

Disbursements are additional costs out of our control. These are set by external third parties such as government bodies or courts.

When do I pay?

Attwells Solicitors will ask you for the full invoice to be settled upfront.

How to instruct Attwells Solicitors?

Instructing us is simple. You can either click on the instruct button below to register your interest or you can call your local office. We have offices in Ipswich, Colchester and London. When instructing us please inform us of the office you would like to use.

 

 

Instruct Attwells

 

If you would like to discuss putting in place a declaration of trust please contact Serena Ely on 01473 229870 or by email at Serena Ely who will be happy to assist.