What is the difference between tenants in common and joint tenancy in the context of renting a home? Which is the one, if one person didn't pay his share, the rest would be responsible to cover it?
Also what's co-tenancy?
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What is the difference between tenants in common and joint tenancy in the context of renting a home?
Neither of these is a way of renting; they are different ways of owning a property. Tenants in common have separable shares - they can sell their shares independently of each other; this is the way you own property with business partners. Joint tenants have an indivisible share, one share owned by 2 or more people; this is the way you own property with life partners.
Also what's co-tenancy?
This describes two or more people renting a property. In general, a landlord will always insist on joint and several liability so that each tenant is responsible for the whole rent - how they sort it out between themselves is none of the landlord's business.
Co-tenancy refers to concurrent ownership to real property whereby two or more persons hold title to the property at the same time. There are three forms:
(1) Tenants in common (where each owns that person's share separate from the other person's share). If a co-tenant were to die, that person's share would pass to the deceased's heir. After all, a parcel of land can be divided into two independent parcels that would be next to each other.
(2) Joint tenancy occurs when each tenant owns a share of the entire property. If one tenant were to die, that person's share would pass to the other tenant. Picture a cake to be eaten by two people. If the cake were owned as tenants in common, the cake gets cut vertically along its diameter. But, if they own the case as joint tenants, the cake would have to be cut horizontally into two layers. That can't happen, so the deceased's share goes to the co-tenant. Sometimes this is called joint tenants with right of survivorship.
(3) Tenants by the entireties is a joint tenancy where the co-tenants are married to each other.
If the word is used in rental agreements, that is a separate matter from this more common use.