What is a LIM?
A Land Information Memorandum (LIM) provides information held by the council about a property, which you may not get off the district plan. This includes lists of consents and development activity on the property. However, just getting the LIM is not necessarily the complete story. The council does not do a site inspection to verify the information in the LIM. It is possible that the council has not been notified of something that could affect you, or that something has been left off the LIM by mistake. This includes the nature and quality of the construction and any DIY projects on the site.
The Council Property File
The only way you can be sure you have complete information about a property is to ask to check the council’s Property file.
You can go into the council’s office, but it might save time if you make an appointment to meet with a duty officer. Give them the details of the property and ask to see the files.
The file may contain important information that the council is not obliged to record in the LIM.
Such information may include any of the following:
- What can the neighbours do that might affect my enjoyment of the site, such as building up and blocking the view?
- Is there anything in the district plan that may affect the property, such as a proposed motorway?
- Record plans of development and construction
- Records of completion certification (or the lack of certification)
- Non-consent items and letters relating to matters on the property, such as; disputes, boundary issues or confirmation of extent of non-consentable works.
As well as making sure that a comprehesive pre-purchase or pre-sale report is undertaken it is key to ensure that you seek legal advice on some of these matters. Jill De la Mare at Wilson McKay Barrister and Solicitors (09 5230768 or [email protected]) provide comprehensive legal advice on all property affairs. She recommends that you contact them before you sign a contract to purchase a property. They can then advise you on the contract clauses required to protect you by allowing them to investigate the LIM, council’s property file and the district plan.
If you are in the market to buy a property, make sure you cover yourself and get it inspected first. One of the unique services provided by HomeBuyers Reports is checking what is seen at the time of the inspection against the lim when it is supplied to us. To get a free HomeBuyers Reports quote click here, or contact us.