Access to personal information by real estate agents and others

Yesterday I received a very formal looking letter which turned out to be a marketing letter from a local real estate agent asking us if we want a property inspection. What bothers me about the letter is that it was addressed to both my husband and myself using our first and last names (which are different) and I can’t help wondering where the real estate agent got this information. He can’t have accessed this information from the land title as my husband’s name was misspelt on the Title deed. We have never used the services of any Real Estate agent as the land was bought from the developer. Can the developer hand this information out? Is this information freely available to anyone? Can I find out the names of everyone in my street? It seems bizarre to me. Any help would be appreciated.


Hi @Felix, welcome to the community.

The information isn’t from the developer.

Names and addresses of land/homeowners is classed as public information and is readily obtainable by any member if the public. Some require fees to do searches. Publicly available sources of the information include:

  • electrol rolls
  • council rate searches
  • council or state government title searches
  • title office land information searches and databases

Real estates agents subscribe to a number of services such as RP Data and Title Office land Information/data services for business needs. It could be to verify the person wanting to sell/rent a house is the genuine owner etc. They can also use it for other business purposes.

Others such as town planners, valuers, lawyers, surveyors, private investigators etc also use similar information sources to allow them to work and sometimes meet legislative obligations associated with functions they perform.

If you do not wish a real estate agent to send you direct marketing material, you can contact them and request to be taken off any if their mailout lists.

You and also register here…

which is for businesses which have signed up to the ACMA program.

I would do both as the real estate may not be a member of ACMA.

It is strongly suggested you contact your state government’s title office to get this corrected. Not doing so could be problematic should you wish to sell or transfer the property in the future. An impact could be a sale contract falls through as your husband’s name isn’t exactly the name on the title meaning there may be questions around whether he is the owner.


Hi phb

Thanks for the comprehensive and prompt response. The Electoral Roll is public but it does state that it isn’t to be used for marketing purposes. I can understand a Real Estate Agent wanting to check up on people they are having business dealings with but I find it creepy to be approached in this way. I shall certainly register with adma though I have never found the Do Not Ring register to be much use.
Thanks for the advice.