The Property Services (Regulation) Act 2011 has been signed into law and awaits the making of the necessary commencement orders.
The purpose of the Act is to give effect to recommendations set out in the Report of the Auctioneering/Estate Agency Review Group. The existing District Court based licensing system for auctioneers and house agents will be transferred to the Property Services Regulatory Authority. Licensing requirements will be extended to cover property management agents. The new Authority will also be given comprehensive investigative and enforcement functions and will be responsible for establishing and administering the new Property Services Compensation Fund.
The Authority will also be given power to enforce standards in relation to the provision of property services. This will include the terms of building contracts, the contents of advertisements for the sale or letting of land and the standards for the measurement of land offered for sale or letting.
The Act includes provisions for a number of databases which will provide information on property sales prices and values.