Transfer of Equity

Transfer of equity is a complex legal process that requires specialist advice from experienced experts. Our residential property team will advise you on all aspects of the process, ensure that you fully understand the rules governing equity transfers, including addressing the many misconceptions about this as a tool to manage tax liabilities and residential care costs.

What is a transfer of equity?

A transfer of equity is when someone is added or removed from the ownership of a property. It sometimes involves gifting an asset or a share of an asset. A transfer of equity can happen under a range of circumstances, including:

  • Following a divorce or separation, when a home becomes the property of an individual rather than a couple through matrimonial conveyancing.
  • When an older person no longer needs a large house and wants to pass it to one of their adult children, who may be struggling to get on to the property ladder.
  • When a partner moves into a property and the couple want to add that individual as joint owner.

Whatever the reason for a transfer of equity, you need expert advice from conveyancing lawyers that you can trust and who will communicate clearly and without jargon so that you understand exactly what’s happening at every stage.

Our award-winning conveyancing team has handled many transfers of equity and works closely with our highly respected Will and Probate team to ensure you get the best advice.

Getting the right advice on transfer of equity

When considering a transfer of equity there are many important issues to understand, both for you and for the person or people to whom you are transferring. These include:

  • Potential inheritance tax implications if you gift a property to one of your children.
  • A requirement to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax to become joint owner of your partner’s property, if you are not married to them.
  • Capital gains tax liabilities if the property has gained significantly in value, or does so after the transfer.
  • Potential exposure to charges of deprivation of assets if a local authority perceives the transfer to be a way of reducing an individual’s assets in order to avoid paying care costs.

Every situation is different and the rules can be very complicated. Our expert team, working closely with our expert colleagues in Wills and Probate, will go through everything in detail to ensure you are able make an informed decision – whether you are transferring the equity, or receiving it.

Supporting you with your transfer of equity

Before you take ownership of a property through a transfer of equity, it’s important that you have all the information about the property, even if the property is staying in the family. This will help to prevent problems further down the line and is especially valuable if the property has been held by its current owner or their family for many years.

We can advise you on commissioning a survey and a Title Review, either of which could reveal important information about the property, its boundaries, access and wayleaves, and any restrictions on how the property is used in future. Taking advice from our expert conveyancing team will help you to avoid any nasty surprises – and unexpected costs – in the future.

We can also provide you with confirmation of a Good and Marketable Title for the property, in advance of the transfer of equity. This will alert you to any issues, which may affect your ability to sell and mortgage the property. For example, we may advise that a mining search be undertaken, which is important for properties in Cornwall. If your property is a leasehold, we can carry out checks to ensure you understand what service charges you will need to pay the landlord, both now and in the future.


Sarah Cowley

Head of Residential Property

Kathryn Shaw


Laura Noble


Sophie Jones


Daryl Pentecost

Conveyancing Executive

Emma Pearce

Licensed Conveyancer

Heidi Start


Isa Wilkins

Conveyancing Executive

Kerry Hodgson

Conveyancing Executive

Lianne Priest


Mary Wright

Chartered Legal Executive

News & Events

Key contact

Sarah Cowley

Head of Residential Property

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