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What happens to joint real estate holdings when a business partnership ends? 

On Behalf of | Apr 14, 2023 | Real Estate Law |

Some business partnerships last for decades. Others fizzle out after only a few years. Either way, the end of that business partnership can be a complex process.

What has to happen is that the business’s debts need to be paid and then the assets have to be divided between the two former business partners. Real estate holdings that are jointly owned are simply assets that that business has acquired. As such, both people have a right to them, and they must be divided in some fashion between those individuals.

Of course, this is a bit more difficult to do than with cash assets. You can split up the contents of a bank account, but what happens to the land your business was on or the buildings that you used when you were running the company?

One person can buy the other person’s share

In some cases, the partnership will end, but the business will continue with only one partner. That person can buy the share that is owned by the other individual. This gives them full ownership, and they can move forward. It also gives the exiting partner the portion of the assets that they deserve thanks to their initial investment.

It can be expensive to do this, naturally. In some cases, the remaining partner may have to take out business loans or seek other sources of funding. They may even bring on a new partner who can make the purchase and share in ownership. 

Both partners can sell the real estate

If it isn’t possible to have one person buy the other person’s share, or if both business partners want to exit the business at the same time, then they can simply sell the real estate and split up the money that they earn. 

For instance, maybe the business is viable, but they both simply want to do something else with their careers. They could find a third-party buyer who wants to run the business after them. This person then purchases the real estate and all of their business assets, the partners split up the money that they earn, and the situation is resolved.

Solutions may be hard to come by

In some cases, with so much money on the line, it can be hard to find a satisfactory solution for both business partners. This is why it’s important for them to understand the legal options at their disposal and the steps that they’re going to need to take.