Property....Selling a share under Tenants in common Title(Qld Land manual) in Brisbane city. Pros and Cons

Looking after my future, as a property owner, to allow purchasers, in a housing market, that has been designed as speculative, to acquire up to 40% share in a Brisbane City lot…683m2(1 building already), and for purchaser to build a granny flat, in a highly sought after suburb. Not for renting, or profit driven investment!
For long term living!
The yard has 2 driveways, and path to the back, as is required under Brisbane city council regulations. Has anyone done it, or know of others who have, as I am going through the pros and cons of doing this. Thank-you for your future replies.

It might be worth engaging a town planner experienced in such developments. They should be able to advise you on pros and cons.

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Hi, Spoke to council, no problem, with the yard, council jurisdiction, etc.
As purchaser, would become a co-owner of title, which enables related or unrelated persons, to build granny flat.
It’s more within the acquirement of title, for the said purpose. There are many tricks that unprepared sellers can be hit with from focused profit only enablers, that would run at a moments notice, once any profit has been made.
So, it’s more in preparing a owner caveat, deed of trust(declaration), a “mutuality of obligation” to ensure stability. I consider there is alot to doing this.
Thanks anyway, for the heads up.

Typically dual tenancy on a single property is facilitated through a strata titled scheme. (Consider prior reply by @phb ) This establishes clear responsibilities in respect of each owner and establishes the necessary legal relationships in respect of property including rights of access.

  • An obvious question is have you first sort professional legal advice?
  • Without this how is it possible to know if your objectives can be met by what ‘Tenants in Common’ provides under Qld law property law?
  • A legal professional can advise also on whether tenants in common are entitled to physical possession of the whole property or are restricted?

Did council clarify the property (rates) and how services would be provided?

The only examples I can relate to on the use of tenants in common are for family members with farming properties. Also subject to legal and taxation considerations that require professional advice.

Like all things related to property across Australia there are state and territory differences that can arise with properties held through ‘Tenants in Common’.


In addition to legal and accounting advice, it sounds as if financial advice may be required. A financial adviser would also look at other options, in an effort to find the best option for your particular circumstances.

Speaking generally, I think a significant consideration when acquiring a large asset with someone jointly (whether joint tenants or tenants in common) is management and ultimate disposal of the asset. What happens when you disagree about management or disposal? How do you value the asset if one party wants to buy the other party out? What happens when neither party can afford to buy the other out? What happens if one party dies (or both parties die)? Have you considered a range of possible changes in your circumstances?

I would generally take a dim view of an owner who seeks to ‘dispose’ of an asset while maintaining control over what the new owner does with the asset.

You may have formed the view that your minimum of 60% ownership means you can ignore all of that because you can make all of the decisions and the other owner just has to suck it up. However that would then reduce the sale price that you can achieve because you are selling an asset where the other owner is tying up a substantial sum but with little to no control over what happens with the asset and little to no control over the exit strategy.

There are many in Australia who own a house that sits on land that they don’t own. It is a precarious situation to be in. While it is not the same as the situation you are envisaging for your minority owner, there are some similarities.


Other than strata title situations I thought the land owner necessarily owned all buildings on the land. That is if you build on land belonging to another you have gifted them the building. Is that not so?

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I more hand in mind some retirement village legal structures.

I think you can avoid gifting a building if the building is “removable” i.e. not permanently attached.

But that’s why you get actual legal advice, right?

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Thanks for clarifying. Note no one on the Community is licensed to provide financial or legal advice - and it seems you are seeking both through identification of potential pitfalls, albeit under the umbrella of experience/pros/cons.

Using anecdotal experiences from the internet could cause significant problems in your particular situation since each is particular to a case, in a specific jurisdiction. What is legal to do (plans, approvals, etc) and how it needs to be done (deeds, subdivision, restrictions, etc) are two issues.

I recommend you seek legal advice from a duly qualified and experienced property specialist as that appears what you need.


My advice like @PhilT’s is get accredited qualified advice. There are businesses that are specialists in these areas and will provide suitable legal opinions on these matters.

Here is who we used for our Farm sale in NSW as an example

andrew costello


I would not describe that as owning a house on land they don’t own. More like owning a share of an entity that owns a large building and land package. It is similar in concept to strata title with different entry/exit/maintenance arrangements.

Compared to simple ownership of house and land the owners give away some rights to the collective. Whether all such co-owners would describe that arrangement as precarious I am not sure, they may prefer to not have all the obligations of separate ownership. Personally I would hate such a thing but I am aware that not everybody is like me.

There are lots of different legal structures and arrangements i.e. not all retirement villages use the same structure and arrangement.

It’s ultimately up to the OP to consider the collective suggestions and obtaining further professional advice.

It’s often better to define what the most important need/outcome is, and let the professional advice guide the solution. Tenants in Common may not be the only or best solution to meet the individual need.

If I was the other party I’d be asking if the arrangement is equal in all respects. A 60/40% split and a granny flat seems like a poor deal for one party. What if a developer wants to pay a premium for the whole property and one of the two parties is not interested? How easy will it be for either party to sell their share to a new owner, given there are conditions written around the relationship that may not encourage a sale?

It all seems like a great deal of effort and expense. It will be interesting to see how it all turns out, if it proceeds.

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This is info about requirements for a granny flat in Brisbane. - City Plan refers to an extension to an existing dwelling house in a residential zone for a granny flat as a ‘secondary dwelling’. It can be a maximum of 80 square metres in size. A granny flat for a member of your household does not need Council approval. This is as long as you meet the criteria in the [Dwelling house code] or [Dwelling house (small lot) code]
Small lots are less than 450 square metres, or for a rear lot less than 600 square metres, excluding the access way.
You will need to lodge a development application if:

  • the granny flat is bigger than 80 square metres in size
  • it is more than 20 metres from the main house.
    You will need a development application for dual occupancy if you are renting it to someone who does not form part of your household.

Hi Goldie,
Thanks for the information.

I had gathered all the relevant information, just like what you have given, and is good to see, that others take time to get the right info!

As, to myself, coming onto the community of choice, it was only to ask people
who had actually sold shares of property, or bought a share of property and how it all went. Hence, the PROS AND CONS remark.
So far, no-body has done that, only to hit peak caveats(all warnings no experience).

Choice is for sharing information, experience, knowledge, so others can avoid pitfalls, traps, and B.S which unfortunately has entered into some of these pages!

Good on you, again Goldie, in informing some others on this site, what efforts people go to. Have a top weekend
As I have been a member of Choice for well over 3 decades, I have hardly used this community site ever.
So it is interesting the replies that have come forth. Especially about financial advisers, when CHOICE has done so many articles on them, and found some rippers…Especially one exposure’ was when they had given one of the advisers a hugely high preformance value of VERY POOR. The rest at that particular time, which is only a few years ago, from shocking to criminal. So, getting all the great information from Choice ACA over all this time has made me quite aware.

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Please go to the Queensland Lands Manual/Property Law/Land Titles Act, and you will be surprised on what you can do!

I have come on here, on a couple of times over my 3 decades of being with Choice ACA, to see what experience people have done with selling and buying a share of property, which of course what we do here at Choice in making people aware of the pitfalls, tricks, and B.S, so hence, the pros and cons.
Go and have a look at the Choice articles, on financial advisers, which hasn’t change much over the decades, with advisers, being rated from very poor, to criminal!

Keep enjoying Choice ACA as I have for a very long time blush:

Perhaps the answer is what you are asking is outside the experience of the community?

It’s an interesting proposition to sell a share of your property to a stranger. That the purchaser would agree to less than an equal share seems equally challenging. These are arrangements most common between family or for business partnerships.

Asking if others have done so? It would seem not within the community. It’s understandable that the community would advise caution, given the proposal is outside the accepted norms.

If there are other examples precedent it may be best to seek feedback from those rather than the community.

On ‘Pros and Cons’ of joint ownership, have you sought and received professional legal advice?

On council approvals have you discussed in complete detail your plans including joint ownership with a stranger with the Brisbane City Council? I’ve found their Planning and Development staff quite approachable.


Would you please provide some pointers to the

As an open forum predicated on evidenced based information it is sometimes the case a questionable post or claim is made by a member, to be rebutted or corrected by others. We moderators would be concerned if we were missing some that should be but were not so addressed.

It is probably the case as @mark_m mentioned that nobody here has done it, so there is no experience and thus no focused response. Yet one of the core aspects of most forums is that everyone tries to be as helpful as they can and in cases answer questions they can rather than the explicit questions asked.

As a ‘new Australian’ with US heritage I have always found the ‘admonition’ to consult a financial advisor interesting since similar advice was less common in the US. In the US it is most often consult your tax advisor :roll_eyes:. At the same time I have come to believe Australian ‘financial things’ are more caveat emptor with less regulation and rarely proactive oversight so a higher proportion of consumers probably do need some advice. Then there are those who take the initiative to learn how ‘it’ works and become self sufficient.

One of the more damning aspects was how difficult it was to get the codes to include working in their customers best interests rather than their own. Some may find the following comforting and others less so.


Hi, In Regards to some of the advice to myself, I fully understand that people are trying to make others aware of certain aspects of the issue(property/Title/legal agreements) that is in contrast to Queensland property/title laws. I had at the beginning referrred to them, which are easily available, just go through Google, and you will obtain them.

property transfer
purchasing and selling a title share…T.I.C
Deed of Trust
Mutuality of Obligation…all of this will be signed off by a property lawyer

  • Buying, selling property under Tenants in Common title(T.I.C)(there are only two…that one, and joint) is not just exclusive to Queensland, but over many states/countries around the world. Though would have subtle differences, which would take immense time to evaluate.
    I have recently observed some aspects of these sort of transactions, on Gumtree. I have also discussed these, and the law with property lawyers/family law lawyers/the titles office of Queensland, which they agree it is possible in law, though would fine it difficult to live with strangers!
    When this sort of transaction does not happen often, though absolutely achievable, I have explained, once a person purchases a share, then that person is a share title owner, which enables them under Brisbane city council “city plan 2014” to build a “granny flat” which will be explained in a caveat by me, and other agreements, which of course focuses on privacy, though have access to the property in full!

No one is been led astray by these Queensland laws…very clear!

The issues I had here on the community with some of the advice, was not legally relevant to these transactions. This is not Strata, retirement village, covenants, under T.I.C privately owned property

Financial Advice, Yes Phil T, it can become complicated about advice, what people were taught in schools/colleges/Uni’s in finance, was minimal and to go and find out pre advice, than consequence, is difficult. Hence the Choice ACA articles(alot) on financial advice, real estate pros and cons, banks failures, which has resulted in a few royal commissions…depending on “terms of reference” which can be political, ideological, polarised, etc

As, you have provided, what had been found about financial services, in a recent commission, was damning, disgusting, and still the current federal government has still not chased up the perpetrators, changed hardly any rules/regulations to fully protect clients/customers/the public, and especially young investors, in this very difficult area.

The same with what I am asking, mainly that there is a media article that could help people understand in contemporary times, 2019/20/21/22 and the future, to acquire property, a PPOR(principal place of residence) is almost impossible for people, now under 50!
The recent reveal by Alan Kohler/Alan Austin/the Australian Institute that there are over 120,000 vacant(empty…mostly owned by foreign entities/money laundering, etc) properties around Australia, just sitting there on the premise of rising house prices.
This has made obtaining a house by first home buyers, over investors(negative gearing/CGT/first home subsidies/spend your super) very difficult.
This is why, myself, and others are making shares in property available. To live near work/schools/family for what ever reason.

In the last few decades, before Neo-liberalism-dog eat dog- me myself- I, Australia had excellent collective of workers…unions, that ensured home ownership, good wages, good conditions, that shared the economy, with all in the economy. This has been attacked by conservatives, haters of collective of workers(insinuating being bullies/criminal behaviour) autocratic run countries, aristocracies, neo-liberals, with police state actions, policies, obfuscation. Even though these sorts, especially corporations…people in management have holidays, wage rises, though not workers, conditions not shared.
Reduction in safety/WH&S/anti-discrimination/confronting appalling/criminal-psychopathic/sexist/racial/bigot behaviour.

Buying a home was mostly just 3 times your wage!
Now, that is around the 10~13 times your wage, which is really impossible.
People are going homeless, having severe mental health disorders, hunger…all because of ideology/policies, that only support a smaller portion of a nation!
Now, INEQUALITY is at it’s highest, not just in Australia, but around the world, causing a huge amount of social justice, health, moral, conflagration crisis’s.

So, to inquire on this site, these issues, is reasonable, and similar to the many hundreds of other concerns, that us concerned citizens do.

So, if people find selling sites, legal firms, sites like property chat, discussing this issue, of Buying and Selling under “Tenants in Common” and it’s pros and cons(some have been covered here…strangers, ability to sell, property access…all the property, with respect/privacy/brainstorming to ensure stability, to share on this great site,
will be muchly appreciated!