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What is PPSR and How does it Work?

  • Oct 18, 2017
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Everything you should know about PPSR…

 
The Australian Financial Security Authority, or ASFA, is an executive agency under the Attorney General's portfolio. This government agency is responsible for the administration and regulation of the:
  • Personal liquidation systems
  • Criminal proceedings
  • Trustee services
In addition to these, one of the major responsibilities of ASFA is the administration of the Personal Property Securities Register, also known as PPSR.
 

What is the PPSR?

The Personal Property Securities Register (PPSR) came into effect in January 2012. It was a consolidation of several registers to provide Australians with one comprehensive database of security interests registered as required under the Personal Property Securities ACT. Since then, millions of searches and security interest registrations are done by Australians annually.
 
The PPSR is, therefore, the one and only Australian register where you can search and/or register details of security interests in personal property. It is the national online notice board that allows you to:
 
  • register your own security interest in a specific personal property to outline the debt or accrued obligation that someone owes to you. It allows you to show prospective buyers, liquidators, or other creditors that you are owed for this particular ‘property’.
  • check and find out if someone has already registered an interest for the personal property you might want to buy or lease.
 
Talking about personal property, PPSR also works for protecting the consumer. Because of the nature of the database, it is used by both creditors and consumers during certain transactions, especially used car sales for consumers. It provides information in case of a transaction of personal properties like cars, boats or valuable artworks, not inclusive of land and/or buildings.
 
When you do a PPSR check before purchasing something, you can find out if that particular personal property has a security interest attached to it or not. Some of you might consider this as not important but it is extremely critical to know.
 
The property may be subject to security interest. Therefore, the possibility lies that the person or any said entity with the security interest will retake possession of it should the original buyer defaults on payments. That means you will lose the vehicle because the original seller had registered their interest on the PPSR database.
 
For a small fee, you can easily perform a search that will provide you with a PPSR search certificate. This certificate will give you the information that could have prevented issues in the future.

Why use PPSR and how it works

PPSR is an online notice board or register that offers excellent risk protection to both individuals and businesses. It is an essential tool to help you protect your assets.
 
These are the ways that you can use the register to protect yourself and your property.
 
1. Taking it in – finding security interest registered information
A simple search on the register board tells you whether the goods that you want to buy is being used as security for debts or other obligations. The register does not disclose the exact monetary value of the debt, but it gives you sufficient information such as who owns the registered obligation. You can then use this information to find out more about the items you were about to buy.
 
For instance, if someone tries sell you a used van without advising you that they still owe financing on it to someone else, they could eventually stop the payment process midway their loan payment period. If this should happen, you can rest assured that the financial institution or individual that is owed will seek to get back the asset used in the loan. If that secured interest was registered on the PPSR, the law provides a process for them to reclaim the assets to cover the outstanding debt.
 
So, it is highly likely that the next day – or maybe a couple days after – you will have authorities as well as the owner of the obligation on the van at the entrance of your home, ready to take away the van. And they will be able to do this without having to pay you a single cent for the loss you now suffer.
 
This is because as a consumer, you have a duty to do your own due diligence before making a purchase. And the government has given you an easy tool which you can access through Quick Revs to get the information you need to decide whether a risk is worth taking for buying that van.
 
It is, therefore, much better to pay a small fee now, conduct a cheap PPSR search and find out if the item you are about to buy is free of debt financing from any firm and safe from repossession.
 
2. Handing it over – securing your interest for your protection
This is the reverse procedure to buying the goods and which is done by the seller or lessor, not the buyer or lessee.
 
This part is also simple enough. This is where you as a seller create a registration on PPSR that shows searchers that you are declaring an interest in a particular good or an asset.
 
To register those goods and assets, they would have to be commodities you will be selling on:
  • Retention of title clause
  • Or that you have mutually agreed with someone else to sell those goods as your representative.
This interest would ultimately mean that the goods and assets are now the security for the debt that someone owes to you. So, the registration would provide protection of your interest in the commodities in case the client defaults or goes broke.
 
3. Charter of Goods:
If you are about to lease, rent or put up a hiring arrangement for the following time periods then registering on the PPSR would also apply to you:
  • At least one year
  • Would maybe last for more than one year
  • An indefinite time period
Making a registration on PPSR would help you secure your interest in your valuables when they are not under your direct possession. This will help you protect your items should there be liquidation or other proceedings if your buyer or lessee goes broke or defaults on your payment arrangement.
 
If your debt is registered first, it means you get first preference under the laws for the recovery of the items.
 
Availability
The Personal Property Securities Register (PPSR) is available and easily accessible by Australians across the country. Because it’s an online database that is constantly being updated, you can access it at any point during the day, seven days a week.
 
Just in case you are planning to buy a used car privately, then you should conduct a PPSR check to see if there is financing or money owing involving the car as well as to get other crucial data on the car itself (write-off history or stolen status).
 
The AFSA recommends that you do a search as close as possible to the time you plan to buy – like the night before you make your payment. This will prevent any other debts from being registered on the vehicle since you and the buyer started discussing the sale.
 
If your search results show that there is a debt registered on the PPSR platform for the car you are buying, and you still choose to buy or lease the vehicle you will be at fault. If the seller stops his payments, you will have the financing company – maybe along with the authorities – at your house ready to repossess that vehicle you just bought.

Fees for doing a PPSR search

We are sure by now that you know that free REVS checks are a thing of the past. Instead, through the PPSR (Fees) Determination 2015, created under subsection 190(1) of the Personal Securities Act 2009 by the Attorney-General, the Australian Government has instituted a paid system for recovering information under the PPSR. It got registered on the Federal Register of Legislative Instruments on 13th May 2015.
 
But, searching the register and getting an easy to read PPSR report does not have to be expensive. With an amount of just $5.99 you can conduct an easy, effective and cheap PPSR check before buying a car or even any other personal property allowed on the register. This small fee would save you a lot more in the long run.
 
So, now that you know more about what the PPSR is, what it does, and how it works, it’s time to make it work for you. If you are planning to buy, lease, rent, or sell a car, you should obtain a PPSR Check from to get the peace of mind that comes from knowing that you are making a good decision.

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Always run a Quick Revs check before buying a used car.

It is a financially prudent habit and can save you from huge legal problems.

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