Your Council

Information for Building Owners

How will I know if my building is going to be assessed? 

What if I disagree that my building should be assessed, what can I do?

What additional information can I provide to Council that would be helpful in determining the earthquake-prone status of my building?

Why will the earthquake-prone status be placed on the land information memorandum (LIM) relating to my building?

If my building is assessed and not considered earthquake-prone – what information will be included in the land information memorandum (LIM) relating to my building?

What can I do to find out whether my building is earthquake-prone before Council carries out its assessment?

Can I respond to Council’s seismic assessment of my building? What happens next?

What happens after Council has reviewed the additional information I have supplied?

What is a potentially earthquake-prone building?

What happens if my building is formally assessed as earthquake-prone?

How long do I have to strengthen my building?

Can I appeal against the earthquake-prone assessment?

Can I sell an earthquake-prone building?

If I am strengthening an earthquake-prone building, is there other work that has to be done too?

Is there any financial assistance available if I have to carry out strengthening on my building?

How will my building be assessed?

How can I find out more information about the earthquake-prone building work process?

 

1.   How will I know if my building is going to be assessed?

You will receive a letter from Council informing you that your building has been identified for assessment including information about the process and a timeframe of when the on- site insepction will be carried out.

If you have any questions, please call us on 0800 486 486 or email: EQPBuildings@kapiticoast.govt.nz

2.   If I disagree that my building should be assessed, what can I do?

You have the opportunity to provide any relevant information to Council about your building before the assessment takes place.

If Council is satisfied that your building is more than one-third of the current seismic loading standard (NZS 1170.5:2004), and therefore not considered potentially earthquake prone under section 122 of the Building Act 2004, we will send you a letter confirming this assessment. 

If on the other hand, Council considers your building to be potentially earthquake prone – that is: less than one-third of the current seismic loading standard – we’ll consider any additional information you can provide about your building. You’ll have 12 months to provide this information, which could include a detailed engineering assessment or work that has been undertaken to improve the building’s seismic performance.

3.   What additional information can I provide to Council that would be helpful in determining the earthquake-prone status of my building?

Information on any structural engineering and assessment work that’s been undertaken on your building, such as an Initial Evaluation procedure (IEP) or Detailed Seismic Assessment (DSA) undertaken by an independent structural engineer. Council will consider any additional information and may re-evaluate the seismic performance of your building as a result.

4.   Why will the earthquake-prone status be placed on the land information memorandum (LIM) relating to my building?

Council is required by law to provide any information it is aware of about a property or section in the district, including the earthquake-prone status of a building, to customers. This can be done in response to requests for the Land Information Memorandum (LIM) relating to that property.

If a building that you own is identified by Council as requiring assessment, this information and any subsequent information updating the earthquake-prone status of your building, will be included on the LIM pertaining to your property.

If you have any questions, please call us on 0800 486 486 or email: EQPBuildings@kapiticoast.govt.nz

5.   If my building is assessed and not considered earthquake-prone – what information will be included in the land information memorandum (LIM) relating to my building?

If on assessing your building, Council is satisfied that your building is more than one-third of the current seismic loading standard (NZS 1170.5:2004), and therefore unlikely to be earthquake-prone under section 122 of the Building Act 2004, we will send you a letter confirming this assessment.  A copy of the letter and assessment will be included with the LIM relating to your property.

6.   What can I do to find out whether my building is earthquake-prone before Council carries out its assessment?

You can approach an independent structural engineer to undertake an Initial Evaluation Procedure (IEP) or Detailed Seismic Assessment (DSA) of your building. These assessments would need to be done at your own cost.  Please note, Council reserves the right to review these findings.

Please also refer to advice for building owners’ on the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s website.

7.   Can I respond to Council’s seismic assessment of my building? What happens next?

Once your building has been assessed, Council will send you a copy of the assessment.

If Council is satisfied that your building is more than one-third of the current seismic loading standard (NZS 1170.5:2004), it will be considered unlikely to be earthquake prone under section 122 of the Building Act 2004.

If on the other hand, Council considers your building to be potentially earthquake prone – that is: less than one-third of the current seismic loading standard – we’ll consider any additional information you can provide about your building. You’ll have 12 months to provide this information, which could include a detailed engineering assessment or work that has been undertaken to improve the building’s seismic performance. You may choose to use an independent structural engineer to undertake an initial evaluation procedure (IEP) or a more detailed evaluation of your building’s seismic performance. 

We will consider any additional information you provide and may re-evaluate the seismic performance as a result.

8.   What happens after Council has reviewed the additional information I have supplied?

Once we have assessed any additional information you have given Council, we will contact you to notify you of our final assessment of the building’s earthquake-prone status.

If on reviewing the additional information supplied, Council is satisfied that your building is more than one-third of the current seismic loading standard (NZS 1170.5:2004 ), it will be considered  unlikely to be earthquake prone under section 122 of the Building Act 2004.  No further action is required by you.

If however, on reviewing the additional information supplied, Council still considers that your building is less than one-third of the current seismic loading standard (NZS 1170.5:2004 ), it will be still be considered potentially earthquake prone under section 122 of the Building Act 2004. As the building owner, you have the option of providing additional information to Council to review this status. Alternatively, you can look at strengthening the building or removing part or all of the building to improve its seismic performance.

9.   What is a potentially earthquake-prone building?

Potentially earthquake-prone means that the building is less than one third of current seismic loading standard (NZS1170.5:2004) and that elements of the building are likely to collapse causing injury, death or damage to other property in a moderate earthquake.

10.  What happens if my building is formally assessed as earthquake-prone?

If your building is formally assessed as earthquake prone, Council will issue an earthquake-prone building notice to you as the owner, to the occupiers and to any persons or organisations that have an interest in the building. This is required under section 124 of the Building Act 2004. In the interests of public safety, a copy of the section 124 notice will also be fixed in a prominent position on the building.

Information regarding the potential earthquake-prone status of the building, including any correspondence from us about the matter, is publicly available on request and will be included in the LIM relating to your property.

The earthquake-prone building (section 124) notice will require you to reduce or remove the danger posed by the building within the time limits set out in the notice.  This could be achieved by strengthening or demolition. Building owners are responsible for all costs associated with upgrading their buildings.  Any upgrade work or demolition may require a building consent.

Please note: Because the timeframes requiring owners to undertake structural strengthening or remove the danger are different under Council’s Earthquake Prone, Dangerous and Insanitary Buildings Policy 2006 and the changes incorporated in the Building (Earthquake-prone Buildings) Amendment Act 2016, to avoid any potential confusion Council will not initially issue formal section 124 notices until the new legislation comes into effect. It is anticipated that this new law will come into effect on 1 July 2017.If there is a significant delay to the implementation of the Amendment Act, Council will review the issuing of section 124 notices.

11.  How long do I have to strengthen my building?

Depending on its use, you have 15 to 30 years to strengthen the building. Council will work with owners and tenants to develop realistic timeframes for strengthening proposals. For more information, see the Council’s Earthquake Prone Dangerous and Insanitary Buildings Policy.

Please note: Because the timeframes requiring owners to undertake structural strengthening or remove the danger are different under Council’s Earthquake Prone, Dangerous and Insanitary Buildings Policy 2006 and the changes incorporated in the Building (Earthquake-prone Buildings) Amendment Act 2016.

12.  Can I appeal against the earthquake-prone assessment?

Yes, you can seek a review of Council’s assessment.  Under the Building Act 2004, you can apply for a determination which is managed by the Ministry of Business, Innovation, and Employment.

13.  Can I sell an earthquake-prone building?

Yes.  The new owner will be responsible for the seismic strengthening within the specified timeframe so it is advisable that purchasers undertake independent investigations prior to purchasing a property that is likely to be earthquake-prone.

14.  If I am strengthening an earthquake-prone building, is there other work that has to be done too?

You will need to consider access and facilities for those with disabilities, and means of escape from fire as part of the building consent application. We encourage you to discuss this with one of our duty Building Control Officers.  Please call Council on 0800 486 486 or call into our Rimu Road, Paraparaumu Council office to speak to one of our duty Building Control Officers in person.

15.  Is there any financial assistance available if I have to carry out strengthening on my building?

No. Under Council’s Long term plan 2015-35, there is no provision for providing financial assistance.

16.  How will my building be assessed?

The Initial Evaluation Procedure (IEP) will be undertaken by our technical specialist who review any available building consent plans, visits the building site and conducts an assessment.

The assessment is based on the age, construction materials, structural form, overall dimensions, the use of the building and the ground on which it is built, but does not involve detailed assessment of building components.

and may involve taking photos. The specialists will carry Council identification on them which will enable them to be easily identified.

If you have any questions, or require further information, please call Council on 0800 486 486 or email us at EQPBuildings@kapiticoast.govt.nz

17.  How can I find out more information about the earthquake-prone building work process?

- There is additional information on Council’s website including our Earthquake Prone Dangerous and Insanitary Buildings policy

- You can call us on 0800 486 486, or email: EQPBuildings@kapiticoast.govt.nz

- You can also sign up to our quarterly E-newsletter. Just email: EQPBuildings@kapiticoast.govt.nz to sign

up. 

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