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What you need to know about the Property Services Regulation Act

18 November, 2013

Property Services Regulation Act

The Property Services Act (also cited as the Property Services Regulation Act) was signed into law in December 2011 and has been causing some confusion for property owners ever since. The Act provides for the establishment of the Property Services Regulatory Authority who are responsible for the licencing and regulation of Property Service Providers (i.e. auctioneers/estate agents, letting agents and property management agents). By supervising PSPs, the Authority are ensuring the improvement of the service received by property owners.If you are looking to sell or rent your property here is what you need to know about the PSA.

As a property owner looking to sell or rent your property you should be aware of this Act and what it means for you. Before you even begin the process of selling your home you need to ensure that the Property Service Provider (PSP) you are hiring for the rental or sale of your property is licensed and has professional indemnity insurance.

Once you have selected your PSP and are ready to start the sales/rental process you must sign a ’letter of engagement’ with your Property Service Provider (PSP) before any service can commence. If an agent receives an instruction from a client to provide services then that agent must draft the ‘letter of engagement’, like a solicitor would provide to a new client. The agent then has 7 working days from when they advertise the property to receive a signed copy of that letter of engagement back from their new client. If the signed document is not received back within 7 working days then the agent is obliged to remove all advertisements and stop providing services. Any work carried out on the marketing of the property before the signing and receiving of this contract is illegal. A verbal contract or any other type of contract is not sufficient to proceed. It is up to the PSP to provide you with the letter within a minimum of seven days of agreeing to be your Property Service Provider.

Currently there are 11 mandatory Letters of Engagement issued by the Property Service Regulation Act, which contain the terms and conditions of service for all types of agency, letting apartments and property management apartments. It is up to your PSP to advise you as to which letter is most applicable to your circumstances and the service they are providing.
The purpose of the regulator is to protect customers and agents from unethical behaviour. The new laws are good news for clients and agents who act in good faith. All 11 Letters of Engagement are free to view on the PRSA website, psr.ie.

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