Frequently Asked Questions
What is PPSR?
The Personal Property Securities Register is a comprehensive database managed by the Government of Australia that lists properties that parties have a security interest in.
The PPSR is a collection of properties that are personally owned and have been used by owners as security to obtain loans. Only properties that have been listed under the PPSR can be found with a PPSR check. These properties do not extend to land used as security. The most common properties listed under the PPS Register are cars, boats, trucks, artwork, and machinery. Buyers who are interested in these properties can trace the financial owing on them and use the results to make decisions with regard to purchasing that property.
What is a VIN?
A Vehicle Identification Number or VIN is a unique 17-digit code that identifies a vehicle and its history. The VIN is the identification number used to pick out cars for administrative purposes. Unlike the registration number (number plate), the VIN of a vehicle does not change. The VIN is unique to a specific car and is located in different areas depending on the make and model of the car. Car owner manuals direct potential owners on where to look for the VIN before purchase.
How do I find the VIN of a car I am about to buy?
Depending on the car, there are three main areas where a Vehicle Identification Number can be located. One is on the structure of the vehicle, often on the firewall. This is usually done by manufacturers during the car-making process. The second section that you can look for the VIN of a vehicle is on the metal plates of the car. Sometimes, the metal plate is stamped with the VIN of a car before being attached to the body. Finally, VIN numbers could be etched onto the rear windows of the car.
What is REVS?
REVS stands for the Register of Encumbered Vehicles. An Australian government registry, this compilation preceded the PPSR. Unlike the PPSR which is a registry containing financial records of all personal properties, the REVS detailed the security interest status of cars and other vehicles. It did not extend to boats and machines. The REVS was the only registry to deal with financial owing in cars before the foundation of the PPSR in 2012.
Where can I find PPSR?
Like many services offered by the Australian Government, the PPSR check is available over the internet at all times. You can get a PPSR report by either going to the government website and directly requesting a certificate or using faster, cheaper PPSR searching alternatives such as Quick PPSR. You can conduct a PPSR search on Quick PPSR by simply clicking on the option to receive a report on the Home Page.
What can I register under PPSR?
Anything that falls under the prescription of a personal property can be registered under the PPS Register. That means that as long as you hold a security interest in a car, truck, motorcycle, boat, or any other possession (with exception of land), you can register it under the PPSR. Also, note that a possession can only qualify as a personal property if its ownership can be transferred from one individual to the next. This property can be tangible as those mentioned or intangible such as licensed rights or property falling under the intellectual category.
Do I need an account to use PPSR?
Whether you need an account to use PPSR depends on your purpose for using the database. If you are a lender, you will need to create an account with the PPSR to list your security. Doing so will help you to keep track of your registration. On the other hand, if your only reason for looking up the PPSR is to get a report on a property, you will not need an account. All you will need to do is fill in the required search details and pay the necessary files to access your PPSR report.
What is a Secured Party?
A secured party is a lender who holds secured interest in a property and registers that interest with the Personal Property Securities Register. For instance, if a bank grants a car owner a loan with the vehicle as security and the bank registers that property in the PPSR, then the bank would be the secured party. Lenders with multiple registered properties can manage their registrations by creating a Secured Party Group. An SPG can only be created when a secured party has an account as well as a security interest.
Why should I register my property on the PPSR?
Because of the costs involved in registering a security interest, people question why they should register their interests with the PPSR. If you’re wondering the same thing, here are a few reasons why it would be beneficial to register your interest.
First, registering interest against a property allows you to know which other interests are involved in that property. The PPSR allows prioritization of registered interest which brings us to the next reason for registering personal property of interest. During bankruptcy situations, the ranking developed by the PPSR system is used in determining which parties with interest should be compensated first. A lender with a stronger registered interest will be compensated before one with a weaker interest, in the same way, a lender with registered interest will be paid off before the creditor with an unregistered interest.
Why should I run a PPSR Check before buying a car?
If you are buying a used car, a PPSR check will let you know if there is a money owing against the vehicle. The same goes if you want to buy other personal property such as intellectual rights, boats, artwork, stocks, machines and even livestock. Knowing the encumbrance on a property will help you make the decision on whether you are going to buy a property or not. Personal property with financial owing comes with a greater risk compared to that which does not have any encumbrance – the risk of repossession by a lender.