Justice Minister Dermot Ahern announced yesterday that under new legislation a database of property sales prices for both residential and commercial property is to be set up and made available to the public in order to (finally) provide transparency about what is going on in the housing market. The news has been welcomed by many organizations, agents and punters saying the planned database would bring much-needed and overdue clarity to the property market.
The responsibility for publishing the data will fall on the… National Property Services Regulatory Authority (PRSA) while The Department of the Environment will take on the task of setting up and maintaining the data. The news of the sale price database is not even a day old and yet the list of hiccups and comments has already been created, including;
- PRSA itself has not yet been put on a statutory basis
- And there is uncertainty as to whether property sale prices can be backdated as the publication of past houses prices could be challenged on privacy grounds (under old legislation)
Under current data protection legislation it is an offence for an estate agent to reveal the sale price of a property without the consent of both the buyer and seller first.