Ten Crucial Details for a Successful Co-Ownership Agreement

Feb 13, 2017

By Craig T. Watrous:

Co-Ownership Agreements are an excellent idea any time two (or more) unmarried people decide to
craig.jpgbuy a piece of real estate together as tenants in common or joint
tenants.  These arrangements are common with unmarried couples and between family members and friends. A well-drafted agreement specifies how the property will be owned, used, how costs of the property will be allocated between the owners, and how the owners can sell their interests. Below are some of the general issues the parties should discuss and may want to include in their agreement.  Keep in mind, if a dispute arises that is not included in your agreement, a court may ultimately decide what your arrangement was.

1. Ownership percentages.  How much of the property will each party own?  Being tenants in common with one another allows the parties to have unequal ownership percentages in the property vs. joint tenants. 

2. How will the property be purchased?  Who is paying for what and how is that payment being valued in terms of ownership in the property?

3. Maintenance, repairs, and replacements to the property.  How will these costs be allocated between the owners?  Who is the owner responsible for receiving notices and paying these items?  What repairs need the approval of all of the members?  Are there any preferred contractors the parties want to use? How does allocation of such costs translate into equity, or not?

4. Mortgage.  How will the mortgage payments be divided between the owners?  Is one person putting down the earnest money while the other pays the mortgage?  Will both parties pay the mortgage?  Who will be named on that mortgage?  What happens if someone doesn’t pay their fair share? How does allocation of such payments translate into equity, or not?

5. Living in and using the property. Will one or all of the owners be allowed to live in the property?  If so, what limits on the use should there be?  Can the property be rented?  What does the rental process look like, and who gets the extra rent money (if there is any)?

6. Tax Benefits.  Who and in what percentage will the tax benefits of owning the property be shared?

7. Sale Restrictions.  Can an owner freely sell his/her interest in the property?  Do the parties want to require a right of first refusal (ROFR)? A right of first option (ROFO)?  What’s the process for determining the value of the property? Can a party force the sale of the property? Who will list the property and how will the closing and other costs be split?

8. Marriage and divorce. If the parties aren’t in a relationship with one another, what happens if one of the parties gets married or divorced and their ownership is considered marital property?

9. Death of an Owner.  One of the owners dies, now what? 

10. Disputes.  How are they handled? Do you want to require mediation? Do you want to require arbitration or head to court? Does the winning party get his/her attorney fees? 


For more information about our law firm’s real estate practice, please visit our real estate practice page. 

Related Posts:

Expedited Removal of Lis Pendens in Colorado

Why You Always Want a Survey When Buying Commercial Property

Mallon Lonnquist Morris & Watrous, LLC, is real estate transaction and litigation law firm. Craig T. Watrous is a Colorado real estate attorney and partner at mlmw_mark_MD_Transparent.jpgMLMW, based in Denver, Colorado. Craig regularly represents clients in the transactions and litigation regarding real estate.  Craig can be reached at cwatrous@mlmw-law.com.

Category: Real Estate

Category List

Tag List

Mechanic's Liens (1)
Landowners (1)
Denver Business Journal (2)
Business Services (2)
Colorado attorney mentor (1)
Denver arbitration (1)
Data Breach Settlement (1)
Wrongful Death Settlement (1)
Cherry Creek Chamber of Commerce (1)
Resolving Business Disputes (1)
Snowboard Gear (1)
Phantom Stock (1)
News and Updates (2)
Commercial Property (2)
subcontractor negotiations (2)
Construction Contracts (5)
St. Anthony, Minnesota (1)
Colorado Construction (1)
Estate (4)
County Court (1)
Certifiably Green Denver (1)
Overtime Wages (2)
Arbitration (2)
Taxes (2)
Data Breach (2)
Wills (1)
American Bar Association (2)
Colorado Judicial Institute (1)
Colorado Spanish Legal Services (1)
Colorado Courts (2)
Reed Morris (1)
Mergers & Acquisitions (5)
Construction (6)
ABA Article (1)
CO Attorney Mentoring Program (1)
Colorado Enforcement of Non-Compete (2)
Community (29)
Estate Protection (2)
Alternative Dispute Resolution (5)
Denver Colorado Business Attorney (9)
Legal Services (1)
Non-Competition Agreements (12)
Colorado Real Estate (11)
Commercial Real Estate (2)
Denver Real Estate (1)
Credit Card Data (1)
Colorado at-will employment (1)
Trade Secrets (6)
Finance Law (2)
Tax (2)
Property Surveys (1)
Business Contracts (2)
CO Business Non-Solicitation Restrictions (1)
Employment (4)
Incentive Plans (1)
Panelist (1)
indemnifications (2)
Skiing Gear (1)
Denver Business Law (1)
Lease Negotiations (1)
Master Services Agreement (2)
Colorado Hispanic Bar Association (1)
Business (1)
Cell Tower Leases (1)
Denver Sustainable Law Firm (1)
LLC Law (3)
attorney-client privilege (2)
Our Courts Colorado (1)
Corporate Law (8)
Non-Disclosure (1)
Non-Solicitation (1)
Litigation (15)
Enforcing Non-Solicitation Agreement (1)
Estate Planning (4)
Construction Bond Claims (2)
Non-Compete (2)
Colorado Employment (20)
Real Estate Law Firm (3)
Leases (6)
Colorado Business (56)
Colorado Lis Pendens (1)
Helmet Recall (1)
Leasing Standard (1)
courts (1)
CO Ski and Snowboard Gear Recall (1)
Stock Options (1)
Colorado Foundation for Water Education (1)
Colorado Wrongful Death (1)
Spanish Speaking Lawyers Committee (1)
Colorado LLC (1)
Non-Solicitiation (1)
Employment Law (1)
Co-Ownership Agreement (1)
Colorado Retail Leasing (1)
cause for termination (1)
Real Estate (4)
Spanish Legal Services (7)
Research (1)
Spanish Business Law (9)
Ethics (1)
Non-Compete, Colorado non-compete restrictions, enforcing non-compete, protecting Colorado business (1)
ABA (1)
Denver Broncos (1)
Labor (3)
cyber security (3)
Colorado business disputes (1)