The properties cannot be transferred to joint ownership with other persons without the consent of the lender who holds mortgages on the properties. If you wish to do this then you will need to speak with the lenders about your plans to see if they are willing to consent to the transfers. It will probably be that they require the person who are going to be named as joint owners are also jointly named on the mortgage.
Executing declarations of trust means that they have an interest in the equity in the properties, but it does not mean they are joint owners. Once you have executed the declarations of trust the interests that you are giving away become a potentially exempt transfer in each case. This means that if you live for 7 years from the date of the transfer then the interests that you transfer will not be included in your estate for IHT purposes. If you die within 3-7 years of the date of teh declaration of trusts the only a percentage of the interest you transfer will be included in your estate for iht purposes.
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