Declaration of Trust

If you’re buying a property with someone else, we recommend that you ask our solicitors to draw up a Declaration of Trust. This is a legally binding document that sets out each person’s interests in the property. It can also detail what should happen to the property in the future.

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Also known as a trust deed, a declaration of trust clarifies who owns a property, in what percentage share, and how it is owned (freehold, leasehold, joint tenancy, tenancy in common etc). It should state the initial contribution made by each party, how the proceeds are to be divided upon any sale, and make provision for what happens in the event of the death of one of the parties to the trust.

If you’re buying a property with someone else, we recommend that you ask our solicitors to draw up a Declaration of Trust. This is a legally binding document that sets out each person’s interests in the property. It can also detail what should happen to the property in the future.

At Aticus Law, we operate on a fixed fee basis. Contact us for a no-obligation enquiry. We’ll discuss your requirements in more detail, after which we’ll provide a total quote for the work to be carried out.

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What is a Declaration of Trust?

Also known as a trust deed, a Declaration of Trust is a legal document that is used when two or more people buy a property together. It can be tailored to your specific circumstances, but will usually clarify:

  • Who owns a property and in what percentage share
  • How the property is owned (freehold, leasehold, joint tenancy or tenancy in common)
  • The initial contribution made by each party
  • How the proceeds are to be divided upon any sale
  • What should happen to the property, should certain circumstances arise in the future (such as the breakdown of a relationship or the death of a co-owner)
  • The rights and responsibilities of each owner with regard to mortgage repayments, repairs and maintenance

A Declaration of Trust can incorporate the beneficial owners of a property, as well as the legal owners. This means that if a parent has contributed towards the deposit, provisions can be made to ensure that parent recovers their money, should the property be sold.

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Benefits of a Declaration of Trust

A Declaration of Trust has two main benefits:

  1. To protect the financial position of everyone who has made financial contributions towards the property
  2. To minimise the potential for disputes in the future

If you don’t make a Declaration of Trust, any money that you have invested in the property could be lost. You may also encounter a bitter dispute in the years to come, if the co-owners have differing opinions as to what should happen to the property – and how any equity is to be divided. By agreeing these details now, you can rest assured that your interest will be protected.

Speak to our solicitors 

If you would like to know more about Declarations of Trust, speak to our conveyancing solicitors. We can discuss your personal circumstances, recommending whether a Declaration of Trust would be beneficial in your situation. If so, we can draft the document on your behalf, creating a legally binding agreement that can be relied on in the future.

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