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July 2007 Buying property with strangers may be safer than with friends

| collaborative consumption, fractional ownership, Landshare, Press, Property | October 9, 2012

July 2007

yours2share urges people to be careful about buying property with friends. yours2share is an innovative new website which goes live this week, with a service to enable owners of property and other valuable assets to find like-minded people with whom to share.

People have been getting together to buy valuable assets such as property for a long time, usually with family or friends. There are many ways of sharing ownership and sharing with strangers is growing in popularity. But most people instinctively prefer to share with friends and family. However Sophie Garrett, founder of yours2share, believes that sharing with strangers can be safer than sharing with friends.

As Sophie explains, the reason buying with friends goes wrong so badly and so often, is that friends assume that they both want the same things and so they don’t discuss the important details of sharing until far too late. Sophie: “People spend thousands of pounds buying a property with a friend and frequently not only have no written agreement of the sharing arrangement, but also have not even discussed the key aspects of the arrangement. These issues include how they are going to end the agreement and use the property. These should be sorted out before they start looking for a property to buy. Unfortunately time and again, the first time they discuss these things is when one party wants to sell and the other doesn’t; or one wants to holiday let the property, and the other doesn’t, or a multitude of other eventualities most of which they could have foreseen easily, if only they had made the effort. These arrangements often end with friends never speaking again.”

Family members can also be bad sharing partners, but at least they normally have an instinctive idea of the other person’s likely requirements and family pressure usually forces people to sort the situation out.

Although sharing between strangers is a relatively new idea, sharing between families and friends is well established so solicitors are used to handling this kind of arrangement. Unfortunately solicitors cannot insist that their clients draw up a Trust Deed to define the sharing arrangement, so friends and family often don’t bother. yours2share has templates for Trust Deeds which help to reduce this cost.

Bizarrely, the best sharing partners are generally strangers. There are two ways of getting together with strangers to buy property: through fractional ownership developments and by advertising for partners. Fractional developers lay down the ground rules and ensure that the contract is sorted out; they usually manage the property as well.

If people advertise for sharers on web sites like yours2share, their natural caution effectively forces them to discuss everything properly. They spend time working out if they trust the potential partners and establishing that they are suitably compatible. They make checks on people and get legal advice. yours2share, which matches like-minded partners to share any property in any location, provides tools and advice to help potential partners find each other and negotiate the right contract.

Notes to Editors:

Fractional ownership: means that more than one person owns the title of a property or other valuable asset. Unlike timeshare, the owners collectively own the property title rather than just the right to use it. There are already several major fractional ownership property schemes; particularly in the USA and a few in the UK. Most schemes are highly exclusive and, if they offer the type of property the buyer is looking for, they are an ideal way to become a fractional owner. Before the launch of yours2share, there were few options for most potential fractional buyers.

Contact: Sophie Garrett on +44 (0)208 133 1234

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