The manner in which you acquire title when buying a piece of real estate can have serious consequences in terms of planning for the future. Although each state has variations on taking title, the difference in each form of ownership is very important and needs to be understood by anyone purchasing real estate.
Taking title as joint tenants usually means that in the event of the death of one joint tenant, the other tenant or tenants have the right of survivorship to the remaining interest in the property.
As tenants in common, each individual has a separate interest that can be sold, willed or transferred, and in the case of death, that interest in the property would need to go through probate, which is usually not the case with joint tenants.
There are other types of ownership, such as partnerships, trusts and the like which should be discussed with your attorney before a decision is made on how to take title.