Building on land subject to a natural hazard
Sections 71-74 of the Building Act 2004 are concerned with building on land which is subject to a range of natural hazards, like flooding, slippage and erosion.
There are difficulties in building on such hazardous land for both the owner and Council eg, things like building in flood management and flood zone areas and cliff collapse, rockfall, landslide.
Section 72 offers a solution by allowing, in certain situations, an owner to take the risk of building on such hazardous land but requires that a warning is placed on the legal title. This warns future property owners of the potential hazard, and reduces the liability for Council and for EQC if there is damage to the land as a result of that hazard.
In almost all cases the issue of the building consent confirms that the building work undertaken will comply with the building code. The hazard notice is in regard to the land not the building.
Hazard notices can affect things like your ability to obtain insurance and on sell the property in the future. If you think natural hazards may apply to your project, Council recommends you seek professional or legal advice so you can make fully informed decisions. We recommend that if you are in one of these areas that you book a pre-application meeting to help you understand the possible hazards on your site.
Where Council considers that the land is subject to a hazard we are required to issue the consent under section 72 and to notify the Registrar-General of Land so that a notice can be placed on the title. Before we do this, we will ask that the owner acknowledges (in writing) that they understand the implications of this, and provide the opportunity for further discussion