Who is The Property Services Regulatory Authority (PSRA)
The decision by Government to establish the Authority was on foot of a recommendation by the Auctioneering/Estate Agency Review Group established by the Minister for Justice and Law Reform to carry out a review of all aspects of the auctioneering industry in Ireland. A significant finding of the Review Group was that the existing statutory framework for the industry is outdated, inappropriate and inadequate for the present day market and does not provide any ongoing official supervisory, disciplinary or consumer redress system. To address these shortcomings, the Review Group recommended the establishment of a Regulatory Authority to underpin a new regulatory framework in the sector. The Authority is aiming to achieve uniformity and transparency in licensing, regulation and provision of information to the public.
Its main functions are:
- operate a comprehensive licensing system covering all providers of property services,
- set and enforce standards for the grant of licences and provision of services;
- establish a system of investigation and adjudication of complaints;
- promote increased consumer protection and public awareness;
- establish a Compensation Fund to compensate parties who lose money as a consequence of the dishonesty of a licensee.
What We Do
The Property Services (Regulation) Act 2011 applies to all Property Services Providers (PSPs). These are persons involved either as corporate bodies, partnerships, sole traders or employees in:
- The purchase or sale, by whatever means, of any estate or interest in land (including buildings) wherever situated;
- The auction of private property other than land;
- The letting of any estate or interest in land wherever situated;
- The provision of property management services. Thus Auctioneers, Estate Agents, Letting Agents and Property Management Agents must be licensed and regulated by the Authority. This applies to property located in the Republic of Ireland and to transactions in Ireland which relate to property located abroad
The regulatory environment provides for:
- a comprehensive licensing system covering all PSPs
- the investigation and adjudication of complaints made against PSPs
- the audit/inspection of PSPs operations
- the establishment of minimum qualification standards
The Authority, following an investigation, has the power to sanction a licensee up to and including the revocation of a licence and may also impose fines of up to €250,000 where a PSP is found to have engaged in "improper conduct".
The Authority may bring a prosecution against a PSP for failing to comply with his or her statutory obligations or against any person providing a property service without a licence which may result in either a large fine or imprisonment or both.
Under the new regulatory regime all PSPs are required to contribute to the "Property Services Compensation Fund". Where a person suffers a loss due to the dishonesty of a PSP the Authority may award compensation from the "Fund”.