If you want to transfer a property out of your name and into the name of someone else, then there are two ways you can do this: a conventional sale or a transfer of equity. A sale will be appropriate where your aim is to dispose of the property and neither you nor anyone else living there intends to remain. This is in contrast to a transfer of equity, where your objective will be to change the legal ownership of the property so that it vests in someone else, or is shared between you and them jointly or in certain proportions, and where the intention is for some or all of you to stay on at the property after the transaction completes.

We use the term ‘transfer of equity’ rather than ‘transfer of ownership’ because when you are the owner a property, whether outright or in conjunction with another person, what you really own is the money (or equity) tied up in it, which equates to what the property is worth, minus anything that is owed on it.

Example

House worth £400,000 Mortgage secured loans £150,000 Available equity £250,000
  • One sole owner, with 100% ownership = £250,000 equity
  • Two joint owners, with 50% ownership = £125,000 equity each
  • Four co-owners, with 25% ownership = £62,500 equity each

There are various reasons why you might want to transfer the equity you own in a property, including where:

  • it makes sense from a tax planning perspective for a property to be in your partner’s name rather than yours;
  • you have decided to create a trust and wish to place property within it;
  • you are getting married or entering a civil partnership and wish to gift a share in a property that you own to your new spouse or partner;
  • you are setting up a business and want to ring-fence your personal assets, including your home, to prevent them being at risk if your business fails;
  • you and your spouse are divorcing and you have agreed to transfer your share of a jointly owned property as part of a financial settlement;
  • you and your former partner have decided to stop cohabitating together and they have agreed to buy you out of the home you used to share;
  • a group of friends with whom you own a property have agreed to purchase your interest in it so that you can go your separate ways; or
  • you wish to gift your share in a property to a long term companion or friend with whom you intend to continue living.

Whatever the circumstances, where a transfer of equity is required you will need specialist advice from a conveyancing team who are experienced in dealing with
this sort of transaction, who can help to make the process as simple as possible, who can ensure that it is completed at a reasonable cost and within an acceptable
time period and who will make sure that you know what is happening through regular updates and progress reports.

How we can help

Our experienced transfer of equity solicitors can assist you by:

  • assessing whether a transfer of equity is the best way to proceed;
  • obtaining the deeds to the property to verify your interest in it;
  • liaising with mortgage lenders or the holders of secured loans to obtain their consent to the property transfer proceeding and you being absolved of liability
    to make continuing mortgage payments;
  • attending to a remortgage where your current lender will not provide consent and you therefore need to change lender for the transfer to go ahead;
  • helping you to determine the amount to be paid for the transfer (the equity cost) where the plan is for money to change hands;
  • working alongside your accountant or financial advisor to determine the tax implications of a transfer, including any liability that may arise to pay capital
    gains tax;
  • preparing the paperwork needed to effect the transfer;
  • answering any queries that may be raised;
  • completing the transaction and arranging for your name to be removed from any mortgage or secured loan;
  • ensuring Land Registry records are amended to show the new ownership position; and
  • accounting to you for any monies received.

Why choose Step Legal Solicitors?

Our experienced transfer of equity lawyers are used to assisting a wide range of clients who have decided that they want to change the ownership arrangements in respect of a property, either by taking a name off or by adding a name on, and whether it be via a spouse to spouse transfer for tax purposes, a transfer from parents to children to facilitate a planned inheritance or simply a wish between co-owners to transfer full ownership to just one of them, either by way of gift or in return for some sort of consideration.

Our service is fast and efficient and we can help whether the equity that needs transferring is worth £50,000 or £1 million and whether it is locked up in a leasehold or freehold property.

All work is supervised by the head of our residential conveyancing team, property specialist Anees Khan, and can usually be undertaken for a pre-agreed fixed cost, which you can gauge in advance of instructing us by using our online conveyancing cost calculator.

And while the majority of the work we do is for people looking to transfer the equity they own, we can also assist if you are the person to whom the equity in a property is being transferred. In particular we can provide advice on the legal searches and enquiries you should carry out, any steps you may be required to take by your mortgage company and any liability you may have to pay certain costs and charges, including stamp duty land tax.

Want to find out more?

For further information, please call us for free on 0800 195 6412 or send an email to enquiries@steplegal.co.uk and we will contact you.

We can assist whether you are based locally in Crewe or elsewhere in Cheshire, or indeed in the surrounding counties of Staffordshire, Shropshire, Derbyshire or Greater Manchester.

We also offer a free Polish translation service should you need it.