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Passport pre viewing

  • 10-09-2021 8:13pm
    Registered Users Posts: 228 ✭✭ bridest

    There's a letting agent on daft looking for copy of passport to be uploaded to their website pre viewing. Is this allowed? Would there not be Gdpr issues? I've no problem showing somebody my passport, but Im not uploading it to a random website



  • Registered Users Posts: 907 ✭✭✭ gauchesnell

    perfectly normally to request it but no I wouldnt upload it to a website.

  • Registered Users Posts: 272 ✭✭ Jmc25

    The Data Protection Commissioner has published guidance on this to the effect that extensive personal data should only be sought at contract stage - when you're about to be offered/sign a lease.

    They say it would be almost impossible for a landlord or their agent to justify seeking personal data from everyone who applies for a viewing.

    From a practical point of view, if you tell the landlord/agent that, they may just not deal with you from there on in. Which isn't good practice or fair, but such is the market.

  • Registered Users Posts: 371 ✭✭ SupaCat95

    I had that problem last year, only they wanted much more to view a rental property. They wanted bank statements, 2 letters of reference per applicant as well just to view including passport. I told them where to get off and was fobbed off with a response that they were deleted after three days. Load of crap, I reported them to the Data Protection commissioner. They were some small town auctioneers thinking they were merchant princes of commerce.

    These lads dont have a regulatory body, you will only be reporting them to their father golf buddies and Fathers in law. Totally a law unto themselves. An audit from the Data Commissioner will put the sugar up them.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,279 ✭✭✭ mrslancaster

    Always wonder why it's ok for employers to ask for all kinds of personal information from all persons applying for a single job, or a bank can ask for your life history before they'll give you a loan or mortgage. Even garages arranging finance for a car worth 30k are allowed to ask for personal & financial data and nobody has any problem handing it over, but a landlord who is handing over a property worth hundreds of thousands cant ask for personal information. How do they short-list applicants to find the best fit for such a huge financial committment? Its a strange one.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,279 ✭✭✭ mrslancaster

    Ok, bad example just to look at a car but why do estate agents ask for ID? Is there some other regulation they need to comply with? There was another thread like this a while ago where an estate agent was asking for details.

    Its hard to understand why requesting personal information is considered a gdpr breach and can only be requested at contract stage by landlords as posted by JmC25, but its not a gdpr breach if requested by employers or banks at application stage.

    Post edited by mrslancaster on

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,279 ✭✭✭ mrslancaster


    Post edited by mrslancaster on

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,085 ✭✭✭ meijin

    just more bad examples

    do you send your passport and financial details when applying for a job? I only ever send CV, no address included, just name, email and phone number, and of course experience, which is relevant to getting the job

    banks require financial data to enter their building and read the brochure?

    because that's the equivalent of viewing a house.

    and this thread is about requiring copy of passport, pre-viewing!

    so what are you actually arguing about, other than the strawman?

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,129 ✭✭✭ GerardKeating

    Potentiually, more that just a GDPR issue, one might make a case for Discrimination. Effectivilly they are asking peoples nationality before viewing.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,248 ✭✭✭ fun loving criminal

    Recently had something very similar. Agent was requesting a long list of things including passport and work and landlord references. And on providing references, I was giving them consent for them to contact them.

    And I only requested a viewing. That didn't sit well with me at all.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,248 ✭✭✭ fun loving criminal

    At what point during an application should someone have previous landlord and work references?

    I thought it would be much the same as a job application. You get offered a job and then you give references.

    Surely, I shouldn't be hassling landlord and work references and letting them know that they will be contacted with every place that I request to view? Or was the letting agent wrong to ask for this information before viewing?

  • Registered Users Posts: 9,022 ✭✭✭ Caranica

    Get written references and have copies of them in a pack to give the agent when you apply to view. They will probably want to speak to them before offering you the place but it's about putting you in the strongest possible position from the start.

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,901 ✭✭✭✭ Dav010

    What do you think a LL bases the offer on?

    Or put simply, one applicant supplies what is requested for consideration, the other refuses until they are offered the property, which one does the LL consider?

    LLs can afford to be choosey.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,248 ✭✭✭ fun loving criminal

    They don't all refuse. There's no need for all that information from everyone.

    If an employer can offer you a job which always depends on the references, the same can be done for this.

    Just because you're a landlord, it doesn't mean you get to make up your own rules.

    According to this, information should only be passed once accepted as a tenant. And shouldn't be requested at the property viewing stage

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,248 ✭✭✭ fun loving criminal

    I was recently asked about HAP from a letting agent as well. This was even before the viewing stage.

    Surely this can be discrimination as well?

  • Registered Users Posts: 272 ✭✭ Jmc25

    This, unfortunately, is the reality.

    The Data Protection Commissioner has given fairly explicit advice to the effect that landlords don't ask for these details from all applicants. But the reality is if you argue the point the landlord will probably just mark you down as a troublemaker and that'll be the end of your application.

    If it's an agency and they're doing it systematically for every tenancy then it's worth reporting them to the DPC for sure.

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,901 ✭✭✭✭ Dav010

    You are not applying for a job, it is not the same situation.

    We all know the DP issues with this, but that is the reality of the situation. LLs may have a hundred applicants, it’s a beauty contest, those with good references, steady jobs, no pets etc are more likely to be offered a property.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,357 ✭✭✭ kirving

    Which is fine, if you're interested in the property *after* viewing. The landlord/letting agent can refuse at that point too if you don't send on reasonable info. Obviously a passport and payslip is reasonable to let an expensive asset. No issue there at all.

    The issue is that I could have sent my passport, payslips and all sorts of sensitive information to dozens of landlords and/or letting agents with zero idea of their data protection policies or security.

    The elephant in the room of course is that the landlord or letting agent is interested in the persons nationality and race from the outset. Why is that I wonder?

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,129 ✭✭✭ GerardKeating

    It only legally discrimination if it one of the nine protected catagories namely "gender, marital status, family status, age disability, sexual orientation, race, religion, and membership of the Traveller community". someone might be able to make a case that discriminating on HAP might be covered under family status or disabilty.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 12 RandomGirl78

    Sometimes I really wonder, if those letting agencies ever heard about gdpr. We were looking for a new house during the last months and like 30-40% of the agencies asked for a massive amount of data, so they could "shortlist" us for a viewing. In not a single case there was a data processing statement on their website and when I asked how they will handle the data, a few even replied that this shouldn't be "my business". I sent a few complaints to the dpc, but I wonder if they will do anything at all if it seems to be so common to ask for that amount of data.

    And for a lot of the examples that have been brought up, it is a complete different situation. A bank will ask for data, when I apply for a loan or an account, but I surely can visit any branch and even can talk to n advisor there, without providing a passport, references or payslips. The same when buying a car. I can also go through job offers on a companies website and talk to someone from their hr department if I have further questions. That's the "viewing stage". As soon as I apply, I need to provide data and that's fine, as I want something from them.

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,901 ✭✭✭✭ Dav010

    You will have to read up a bit on this and the scope of the WRC in relation to HAP discrimination/tenancies.

  • Registered Users Posts: 901 ✭✭✭ usernamegoes

    The Equality (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2015 added HAP as one of the grounds.

  • Registered Users Posts: 7,129 ✭✭✭ GerardKeating

    That's good to hear, but (even recently) some add specifically mention no HAP

  • Registered Users Posts: 272 ✭✭ Jmc25

    I've dealt with property management companies as a tenant and owner, and estate agents as a buyer and seller and I've come to the conclusion that the bar for companies providing property services in Ireland is absolutely appallingly low. So the GDPR issues should come as no surprise to anyone with any experience of dealing with these crowds.

  • Registered Users Posts: 901 ✭✭✭ usernamegoes

    Those ads are in violation of the Equality Act (as amended). Poor enforcement is the reason for that.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,248 ✭✭✭ fun loving criminal

    Have you ever applied for a job where they asked for ID and bank statements before an interview?

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,901 ✭✭✭✭ Dav010

    Why do you keep associating this with a job application?

    Do you rent a job worth hundreds of thousands of euro from your employer?

  • Registered Users Posts: 272 ✭✭ Jmc25

    Every landlord should look for as much info as possible from prospective tenants for sure. I've no sympathy for those that don't and then get stung, especially in the current market where they have their pick.

    I think the issue is at what stage do they ask. I think it would be reasonable to ask some general questions (no documentation required) of interested parties and draw up a shortlist based on that. Then ask for documents from those on the shortlist. I'd imagine the LL would be reasonably well covered from a data protection perspective in approaching it in that manner. And it's more professional and frankly portrays the LL in a much better light generally.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,248 ✭✭✭ fun loving criminal

    I have no problem handing over a rake of information but it shouldn't be before viewing. And DPC agrees with that.

    It's absolutely scandalous that this is allowed to happen.