Can one person sell a home held in joint tenancy?

UPDATED: Oct 2, 2022

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Oct 2, 2022Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Can one person sell a home held in joint tenancy?

My husband and I own a duplex with another couple. They want to sell and we do not. They found an agent

that listed the home without our signatures or any consent. We did not sign a listing agreement. Is this legal? Yesterday, the agent contacted us to tell us there was an offer. We have made it clear we do not want to

sell. About 6 weeks ago, we paid an appraiser and offered to buy them out. They refused and stated that they

would prefer to sell to a stranger. We have tried to negotiate. Our home is still on the market even though we have written and called the broker and the agent and asked them to remove the listing and explained that we are able and willing to buy them out. Can they force us to sell without going to court?

Asked on October 15, 2019 under Real Estate Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

No, in a joint tenancy (since you are calling it a "joint tenancy," we assume you mean a "joint tenancy with right of survivorship," or JTROS; if it's not but is instead owned as "tenants in common," the answer will be slight different and you should repost your question) all joint tenants must agree to a sale OR there must be court order for the sale. Some of the joint tenants cannot sell without the consent of the others or a court order.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption