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Councils who signed off on leaky buildings could find themselves in the firing line if a planned class action suit goes ahead.

Auckland law firm Adina Thorn Lawyers has funding from a UK-based litigation funder to take a class action against councils that inspected or improved leaky or failed buildings within the last 10 years.

More leaky-building owners – many from the east Auckland – will have the chance to join a self-funded class action against James Hardie after the Court of Appeal released a judgment today upholding the representative action and extending opt-in periods from two and 10 weeks to five months.

Costs have also been awarded in favour of the owners.

Some of the most affluent parts of Auckland are also potentially most at risk of leaky homes, a website suggests.

Remuera, Gulf Harbour, Parnell and St Heliers are among the city's top five suburbs for having plaster houses built in the decade when leaky homes became a big problem, 1994 to 2004.

Henderson was the only more affordable suburb on the list.

The data was sourced from Auckland Council records and user-submitted data by property website Relab.co.nz.

A "dripping time bomb" is how a Palmerston North building inspector characterises a largely unseen problem he says is about to impact the city's housing stocks.

Steve Brown is worried that a new generation of leaky homes constructed during the 1980s will affect homeowners, emotionally as well as financially.

A popular brand of timber product used to build Kiwi homes doesn't meet the strict rules put in place in response to the leaky homes crisis. 

That's prompted urgent action from government officials. 

The Commerce Commission has ruled J-Frame is not everything it claims to be. J-Frame is a laminated veneer lumber - or LVL - made up of multiple layers of thin wood glued together. 

An anonymous global litigation funder has breathed life into a leaky homes lawsuit against Carter Holt Harvey which has been batting around for more than a year.

The class action against the building products firm for supplying Shadowclad weatherboard cladding alleges the material is responsible for causing leaks and warping.
Auckland lawyer Adina Thorn said the "David and Goliath" lawsuit struggled to find claimants to shoulder funding, so having a funder who would take 25 to 35 per cent of the total settlement moved things forward.

Partially treated framing timber could be allowed into the building industry with the Government's blessing, an industry boss says.

Untreated timber has been banned for framing since 2003 after the rules were relaxed in 1995, prior to the leaky building crisis.

Marty Verry, chief executive of leading mill Red Stag, said that the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) was considering allowing "envelope treated" timber in a review of timber treatment standards.

Residents of a central Auckland leaky apartment building are facing a $17.5 million repair bill.

But a stoush has broken out with a property development company over who should pay what and the project has hit a wall.

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