English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

If I must ask a person if his house is owned or rented, which word would make a proper relation?

I am looking for something like this:

What's your [...] with the Property (or Car, or Camera)? (Owned, rented.)

I want a single word to place in there, without rephrasing the question. And doesn't need to be just a real-estate property, the subject could be anything that can be owned or borrowed.

share|improve this question

"Interest in." Or at least, that's the hypernym that would survive contact with a law professor.

share|improve this answer
I suppose that would be future-tense! – Alexander May 29 '12 at 4:54

If you can stand changing your preposition, you could say:

What's your relationship to the property?       Owned      Rented

(I don't consider renting borrowing, so I'm not sure what that part of your question is about.)

share|improve this answer

I think with may be wrong (using British English, I feel American English speakers overuse it, as with meet with and talk with).

"What's your tenure of the property?" looks reasonable, producing a reply like "I'm the owner/tenant of the property".

share|improve this answer
I agree about your feeling on the preposition use, but as a U.S. English speaker, I would have to think hard to figure out what you're asking with the question, "What's your tenure of the property?" – JLG May 28 '12 at 14:16

I don't think there's any English word that brings that relation immediately to mind. Assuming the question is on a form, I suggest working around the problem by writing something like:

I    own       rent     this property.
      (Circle one)
share|improve this answer
I am not looking for the question, I want the word. Thanks. – Alexander May 29 '12 at 0:44

Occupancy status is a possible phrase.

possession status is an alternative.

share|improve this answer
@David Schwartz: My answer was posted before OP's edit. I have now edited my answer suitably. Always think of the possible situations while commenting. – Kris May 30 '12 at 10:53
Possession is ⁹⁄₁₀ of the law. – tchrist May 30 '12 at 13:02

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.