Owning a property of some kind, whether freehold or leasehold, residential or commercial, needs the backing of a Will to ensure that it passes on death in the way that the owner wishes.
Without a Will the Intestacy Rules govern who benefits from an estate, including who will inherit property. However, these Rules will not help non-family members, such as unmarried partners.
People often make assumptions as to how a property passes on death. The survivors are then surprised when the Intestacy Rules take effect, because there is not a Will, and so people who should or expect to inherit are excluded.
Buying a property and ensuring that you have the correct type of Will should always be seen as linked transactions and not separate matters.
When considering which form of joint ownership to choose when buying property, you need to take account of the form of ownership in conjunction with making a Will or reviewing your existing Will.
If a husband and wife do not each have a Will then, on the first death, there is no guarantee that the survivor will inherit everything.
Sometimes a person will want a property to pass to friends or charity. A verbal wish or written note is not enough – the only way to make certain the gift goes where it is intended is by making a Will.
Please do not take chances with your family. Contact us on 01243 790532 or firstname.lastname@example.org at The Owen Kenny Partnership Solicitors to draw up a Will, or to review an existing Will.