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Auck, can you buy anywhere and build up without consideration of other peoples views?

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  • Auck, can you buy anywhere and build up without consideration of other peoples views?

    Seems a lot of Auckland properties would devalue over night if people were to build to the 8m+1m for roof from the natural level of ground (ie not a dug out foundation). I believe (just from asking ages ago) that is the allowable height, which seems a lot for 2 story, but regardless even 1.5m would block out view.

    We have an old bach/2bed home in front of us, which we can currently see over due to the natural slope of land. We can see to one side too which is the main sea view for the tenants (of our home).

    If the little house in front (on a shared easement) was to build up most of our view would be gone. I dont think it can go sideways as would be within the other house on their crosslease boundary, but not sure. Potentially our house could lose both sets of view.

    Obviously this would dramatically decrease the market value of our property (circa $1.2m).

    One property lawyer told a friend who had a house to the side, which had a view of water and was blocked out, it is line of sight to a certain degrees (ie maybe 100deg for argument sake) of view. A council person supposedly told the friend there is no protection of any "views". Now I dont know if this is just a law perspective vs the council has no role in protecting a non tangible asset etc, or if both are wrong due to being 2nd hand info.

    Thought I would ask you guys your thoughts while waiting to find out the official stance on it? (not holding anybody to anything obviously, just very hard to get straight answers at this time of year).

  • #2
    The Property Law Act protects your views when it comes to trees. Not so for buildings. Provided they build below (heightwise ) requirements as set out in the city/district plan and meet the daylighting requirements as per the Building Act. Yep your view can be built out. Other protection is a covenant on the title of the property infront imposing a height restriction. This was done when land was subdivided to then allow protection of the view from the back block making it more attractive to sell, or if the owner built there and sold the block in front. Case in point. Friends in Wellington had a 2 storey house in Wellington with views over the cute bach in front to Lyall Bay. Little did they know that under the city plan houses on that bach's particular road were able to be built higher than the standard height restrictions elsewhere. Cute bach was sold and developed into 3 storey house. View gone.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by RollingCloud View Post
      The Property Law Act protects your views when it comes to trees. Not so for buildings. Provided they build below (heightwise ) requirements as set out in the city/district plan and meet the daylighting requirements as per the Building Act. Yep your view can be built out. Other protection is a covenant on the title of the property infront imposing a height restriction. This was done when land was subdivided to then allow protection of the view from the back block making it more attractive to sell, or if the owner built there and sold the block in front. Case in point. Friends in Wellington had a 2 storey house in Wellington with views over the cute bach in front to Lyall Bay. Little did they know that under the city plan houses on that bach's particular road were able to be built higher than the standard height restrictions elsewhere. Cute bach was sold and developed into 3 storey house. View gone.
      Thank you, that is what potentially cou;d happen to ours. I have no idea on how to check when they 2 original Bach's did a Cross lease on each section if the other cross lease had any clauses in it to protect the other cross lease (mine). I doubt they were owned by the same person though.

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      • #4
        So the question now is, sell and actualise this years equity, then buy a stand alone property on top of the hill, plenty that can see over the top of that height resctriction. The key would be to sell this one before the person in the small Bach gets any ideas of selling. The land is probably worth shed loads, even though they have renovated the heck out of this cute little 2 bedder.

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        • #5
          Oops missed that you said X lease. Cross lease is a different kettle of fish. There are thoughts on building outside the flat plan of the building perimeter, on the ground (outwards) as opposed to upwards. The lease document should give you information. If it is not stated then I am not sure on building upwards. You usually can't unreasonably withhold consent but maybe you would have reason to withhold consent if them building up means devaluing your property hugely. They could also end up breaching daylighting requirements. Unless the lease doc is clear then it may be a grey area that you would need to seek legal advice on.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by RollingCloud View Post
            They could also end up breaching daylighting requirements. Unless the lease doc is clear then it may be a grey area that you would need to seek legal advice on.
            It was originally one block, then subdivided, then the 2 sub divides cross leased, so now 4 on the original ~2400sqm

            My X lease neighbour is to my side, but in front of us on a shared easement is another 2 homes, which are on a x lease. They talked about trying to go freehold, but Ive been told you cant have things like plumbing on somebody elses land, so the cost to dig that up etc plus the $20k type fee, is probably cost prohibitive.

            Im thinking more about our next property though, can people just build up and block your view? Council says there is no restriction from their end, but could it be a legal matter?
            Last edited by OnTheMove; 24-02-2021, 02:16 PM.

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