What is a LIM?
A land information memorandum (LIM) is a legally-binding document that states everything we know about the history of a property, and any issues that may affect the property. The information is accurate to the best of our knowledge, no site inspection is carried out by the council.
LIM information includes:
- Any special features or natural hazards of the land, including potential erosion, subsidence, slippage, flooding, or the likely presence of hazardous substances.
- Information on stormwater and sewer services and the availability of water services.
- The property's government valuation and a summary of the rates account.
- Any consents, certificates, notices, orders or requisitions affecting the land or buildings.
- District Plan information including zoning and designations and an indication of the status of your intended use of the property, details of proposed road widening, height restrictions, viewshafts and tree protection, and any heritage values.
- Any other classifications of land and buildings that we have been notified about.
- Any other information that we consider to be helpful.
Why is a LIM important?A LIM enables you to check that all of the buildings and structures on a property are approved, such as decks, conservatories, spa pools and fire places.
Many prospective house buyers have ideas of how they would like to develop a property, and a LIM will help you identify potential development restrictions before you buy. You may find it useful to know if your intended use of the land is feasible.
A LIM also identifies any potential hazards, e.g. it may show areas prone to ponding or flooding in heavy rain.
If you own a property with unauthorised building work, your insurance may be invalid and it could be expensive for you to rectify the unauthorised work.
How to get a LIM
To apply for a LIM, you can:
- Apply and pay online, or
- Download an application form below, or
- Collect an application form from one of our offices
Applying for a LIM online
Register your details with myCouncil online services, then complete the application and pay online.
You can pay online by credit card or internet banking using Account2Account.
Download the application form
Complete the form and send it to us with the processing fee. You can also email your form and confirmation of online payment (details below) to LIMS@npdc.govt.nz or fax your application and send your fee and the original form in the mail. The application will be processed once the fee is received in full. (Please note that a cancellation fee applies.)
If you are paying by online banking use your Surname and LIM as the reference -
New Plymouth District Council bank account: 03-0713-0357528-08
Note: Please check with us to make sure that you have the correct 'lot' and DP reference on your application form so that the LIM relates to the correct property.
Types of LIM, fees and processing times (2017/18)
The type of LIM you will need to apply for depends on the type of activity taking place on the land. It is not based on the District Plan zone. The fees may need to change if the wrong category has been selected. The Council will contact you prior to work commencing on the LIM if further fees are to be applied.
Choose this type of LIM for a property that is primarily used for residential or rural purposes.
- Standard (10 working days) - $280
- Urgent (seven working days) - $400
Choose this LIM type for a property that is primarily used for industrial or commercial purposes. For example: motels, rest homes, factory farming.
- Standard (10 working days) - $380 base fee*
- Urgent (seven working days) - $530 base fee*
*Base fee: This includes 2.5 hours technical processing time. Complex or large scale industrial/commercial LIMs are likely to exceed the processing and research time covered by the base fee. Where this occurs additional time will be invoiced. Additional time will be charged at $120 per hour.
If you are not sure which type to choose, please contact us first. Email LIMS@npdc.govt.nz or phone 06-759 6060.
Can I make a change after I've applied for a LIM?
Upgrading from standard to urgent
It is possible to upgrade a LIM from standard to urgent within three days from lodgement of the initial application. Additional fees apply. Please contact us to arrange this.
Cancelling a LIM
A $60 cancellation fee will apply or the actual processing and research costs, whichever is the greatest.
What to do with your LIM
Examine the LIM closely with your lawyer and check that the information in the LIM is the same as the physical detail of the property. Conveyance lawyers know what to look for in a LIM.
Some of the basic things to look for:
- Check that any constructions or alterations have a building permit or consent. Where building consents have been issued, check that a code compliance certificate has also been issued.
- If any resource consents have been issued for the property, check that consent conditions are being met.
- Check that the waste disposal system is as stated on the LIM - if the LIM tells you the property is connected to council reticulation but you've seen a septic tank vent, confirm the situation with us.
- Consider your future development ideas for the property. Items valued by the community - such as protected trees, archaeological sites and heritage buildings - as well as pipes and drains may be issues you'll need to work around.
Please contact us if there is conflicting information on the LIM.
Buying a property with unconsented or unrecorded building work
Subsequent owners may have some redress, but generally you inherit the liabilities of any illegal building work. It is prudent to be satisfied prior to the sale that the work will not create an ongoing problem to you.
One option for assessing the standard of unconsented or unrecorded work is to obtain a report by an appropriately qualified professional such as an independent building surveyor or registered structural engineer.
What is our role?
Our role in relation to property information includes storing information and making it available to the public.
In many cases, we will be able to provide you with more information about an issue raised in a LIM. However the appropriate professional to assist you to interpret your LIM is a lawyer, so please do not be offended if we refer you to your lawyer.
We do not visit the property during preparation of a LIM. Therefore a LIM does not guarantee to identify unauthorised building works and land uses, and it does not attempt to provide an assessment of the development potential of a site.
Who else can help me check out the investment?
As well as obtaining a LIM, a prudent purchaser would also obtain a pre-purchase building inspection. The Council's building inspectors do not undertake pre-purchase inspections. To contact a building inspector look in the Yellow Pages under 'building consultant' or 'building surveyor', or contact the New Zealand Institute of Building Surveyors on 0800 113 400.
Other Property Information Services (2017/18)
Standard research fee for viewing building consents/permits on a property - $30
Research charges - $120 per hour
Coloured aerial print A4 - $6
Coloured aerial print A3 - $12
Microfiche print out A4 black and white - $2
Additional photocopying - 50c per copy
Certificate of Title searches (2017/18)
To obtain a certificate of title you need to submit your application in person at the Civic Centre or a Council Service Centre in Waitara, Bell Block or Inglewood. The search costs $25.
We do not give interpretations on the Certificate of Titles and we recommend discussing this with your lawyer.
Please note a LIM report will include a copy of the Certificate of Title.