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  • Profile photo of Steve McKnightSteve McKnight
    Keymaster
    @stevemcknight
    Join Date: 2001
    Post Count: 1,749

    Hi,

    I thought I would start a discussion about LIMs and whether or not you feel they are worthwhile.

    A LIM is a Land Information Memoranda. It is defined as (view source):

    A LIM (Land Information Memorandum) is a report prepared by Auckland City which provides a summary of property information as required to be included under the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987, current as at the date it is produced.

    Some of the information contained on a LIM includes:

    * Information pertaining to the land (flooding, erosion, subsidence (essential for the Huntly area!) etc.

    * Any rates owing (which will need to be paid prior to settlement)

    * Council policy on zoning etc.

    * Building permits etc.

    (As a sub note… in Australia, some, but not all of this information may need to be disclosed in the contract (depending on the State)).

    The cost is usually up to a couple of hundred dollars depending on the local council.

    What are your thoughts? Are they worth the cost as part of the due diligence process?

    Cheers,

    Steve McKnight

    **********
    Remember that success comes from doing things differently.
    **********

    Steve McKnight | PropertyInvesting.com Pty Ltd | CEO
    https://www.propertyinvesting.com

    Success comes from doing things differently

    Profile photo of tamaratamara
    Member
    @tamara
    Join Date: 2003
    Post Count: 56

    I think that this information is important but dont be fooled into thinking that a LIM contains all of the information. In 2004 a new land owner obtained a LIM a long with other due dilligence only to find out that for cultural reasons he could not undertake the development he had wished. The ongoing publicity around this case discussed wether the council had an obligation to disclose this information and they said no.

    Dont forget that you are sometimes able to get the information found on a LIM for free if you are in a position to go into the council yourself.

    Just my thoughts

    Tamara

    Profile photo of MiniMogulMiniMogul
    Participant
    @minimogul
    Join Date: 2002
    Post Count: 1,414

    Tip # 1:
    You can often ‘sneak’ the information in the LIM for free by going to the council and viewing the file.

    Tip # 2:
    It is often what is NOT in the LIM or council records that is as important than what is in it.

    OK, you have your building line restrictions etc, but is that garage/fireplace/extension permitted?

    If not, what are the safety and insurance implications? My advice, when starting out, get a LIM for the extra $150 odd bucks. If you can’t afford a LIM, hey, you can’t afford a property!

    Later on when you have done many deals and looked at many properties and read many building inspections and LIMS, you will be able to get the experience to know how to spot a potential LIM issue.

    email me if you want a Pdf I have on LIMs. I was looking for the link to post it but I think it’s gone.

    NZ Investor and Bird Dog

    Profile photo of CastleDreamerCastleDreamer
    Participant
    @castledreamer
    Join Date: 2003
    Post Count: 288

    Hi all,
    most of the local council sites have a brochure or link describing the LIM, its origin, legal basis, and the kind of information it contains. I have attached some links here that might be of interest:
    http://www.howtolaw.co.nz/html/ml111.asp
    http://www.buildingguide.co.nz/?id=25

    The LIM can be ordered by your solicitor, or your building inspector might be able to go to the council directly and view the building file for you – the latter won’t have the formal report of the LIM, but can have the advantage that the builder has actually seen the garage on the block and then notices that it is not permitted in the file!!! Bit hard for the solicitor to see the garage!!!

    the standard NZ contract allows you 10 working days from date of contract to make any issue with the LIM if you find anything of concern.

    Have a read of the links!!

    Cheers
    CD

    CastleDreamer
    “+CF properties in NZ available now, email CastleDreamer or Minimogul”

    Profile photo of QueenstownerQueenstowner
    Member
    @queenstowner
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 27

    Hi
    I think they aren’t worth the cost and personally would rather pull the file, it has saved me from making a huge mistake that didn’t come up on the lim.If you or someone you trust can’t get in to inspect the property and go to the council to view the file your taking a major risk.i think many councils are starting to charge a fee for viewing the file now or are thinking about it,I’m sure it was Invercargill city talking about it in the paper a while back.
    Regards queenstowner.

    Profile photo of MiniMogulMiniMogul
    Participant
    @minimogul
    Join Date: 2002
    Post Count: 1,414

    Queenstowner, I would agree with that, good advice – don’t buy without checking council in some shape or form – BUT I am surprised that you found something in the council file that was NOT in the LIM – can you disclose what that was, even if in general terms?

    cheers-
    Mini

    NZ Investor and Bird Dog

    Profile photo of js2js2
    Member
    @js2
    Join Date: 2003
    Post Count: 758
    Profile photo of bigdreamsbigdreams
    Participant
    @bigdreams
    Join Date: 2005
    Post Count: 5

    Interesting reading all these posts. I haven’t done a LIM yet on any of my ppties as I like to go and see the ppty folders myself. In Auckland, Auck CC charge, Manukau CC and Papakura DC are free – I always get up early to be the first in line at the CC so I don’t have to wait so long for service. Also, the Building Inspectors and Town Planners are usually free at this time so I can get to them first to explain any issues found. Always go in with a list of Q’s so you don’t forget anything and go in armed with all your research on the ppty. Hope this helps.

    Profile photo of SineadSinead
    Member
    @sinead
    Join Date: 2005
    Post Count: 14

    I think LIM reports are very important but only if you understand the information they contain. The limitation of LIM reports is that they cannot point out unpermitted work as the council don’t know about it !! You need to be able to recognise alterations which have been done which don’t appear on the report and require a permit.

    Profile photo of kiwipropertykiwiproperty
    Member
    @kiwiproperty
    Join Date: 2005
    Post Count: 24

    In NZ there is no certificate of occupancy requirement (although this is likely to change sooner rather than later) and it’s been easy for people to build extensions, units, granny flats, etc. outside the proper building code.

    LIMs are, in a way, your certificate of occupancy. So it is definitely the inconsistencies in the LIM or what’s missing that is of importance here.

    It used to be quite a simple process to have any uncertified works (i.e. items not in the LIM) certified. But new laws on 1st April this year makes the certifications much more cumbersome and expensive.

    Consequently there has been a lot of recent talk in the NZ press about LIMs. Purchasers in the know are tending to steer clear of any flawed LIMs. Bottom lime is this can have a serious effect on the sale price of your property unless you are prepared to foot the bill to get the works certified and make good the LIM prior to sale.

    One last thing to be mindful of with respect to uncertified works is that you may have problems getting insurance – or settling on an insurance claim if it has anything to do with uncertified works.

    So if you can’t view the LIM yourself, it’s best to have an experienced building inspector do it for you so you don’t get caught out – unless you like to gamble that is.

    Sigrid de Castella & Antony Anderson

    http://www.kiwiproperty.biz
    New book “The Guide to New Zealand Property Investing – Australian Edition”
    Available at our web site along with other NZ Resources for Australian Investors

    Profile photo of Rob and JoRob and Jo
    Member
    @rob-and-jo
    Join Date: 2005
    Post Count: 6

    Well here’s my view on LIM reports.
    North Shore City Concil charge $200 and you have to allow 10 working days from the time of application going in. Futuresafe, who carry out building inspections will provide a LIS report AND a building inspection for around $400. The LIS (Land information Survey) report is exactly the same as a LIM but these guys can turn them out in about 4 days. This has the advantage of a builder on site who is also checking the file for you.
    If you want to inspect the file, you have to call the council to order it (they keep them off site) and allow 48 hours for them to get it. You can get the file on disc for about $30. The council have been known to make errors on LIM reports.
    Hope that is helpful.

    Profile photo of SineadSinead
    Member
    @sinead
    Join Date: 2005
    Post Count: 14

    Auckland City Council charge $210 for 10 day delivery, $270 for 4 working days. You can also go to the council offices in Graham St and view the file of any property for $12. You pay per sheet for copies of any of the documents you want to take away. This is a great option if you want to view all applications, correspondance, plans etc.

    Profile photo of kerwynkerwyn
    Member
    @kerwyn
    Join Date: 2004
    Post Count: 145

    Hi All
    It depends on how old the property is. I got a LIM that had zero in it as it predated the recording date and was a big waste of money. If I was buying commercial I would get a LIM but reluctant to get one for a residential, unless I had a suspicion that there maybe some illegal additions.
    I have a great solicitor who checks for unpaid rates and other stuff as part of his service, he also believes LIMs are a waste of money 99% of the time.
    Kerwyn

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