Property assessments are in the mail

Most Kootenay properties are worth more this year according to BC Assessments

BC Assessments has released its 2015 property assessments, but the only information available this year is a regional perspective, with one home price per municipality, rather than broken down into neighbourhoods as it has been in previous years.

“We have moved to a Regional format this year, as a result there won’t be a release for each municipality,” said Ramaish Shah, Deputy Assessor, BC Assessment Kootenay Columbia Region.

In the next few days, owners of more than 142,000 properties throughout the Kootenay Columbia region can expect to receive their 2016 assessment notices which reflect market value as of July 1, 2015.

“The majority of residential home owners within the region can expect an increase, compared to last year’s assessments,” said Shah. “Most home owners in the Kootenay Columbia region will see modest increases depending on their location. For example, a typical single family home in Nelson that was previously assessed at $315,000 was valued at $333,000 in the summer of 2015.”

Overall, the Kootenay Columbia region’s assessment roll increased from $36.97 billion in 2015 to $37.89 billion this year. This value reflects a change due to market movement as well as $361 million in growth due to subdivisions, rezoning and new construction. The Kootenay Columbia region includes the southeast portion of province from Cranbrook to Grand Forks and from Trail to Golden.

So in Kimberley a typical home valued at $209,000 in July 2014 is valued at $228,000 in July of 2015. In Cranbrook, a typical home worth $256,000 is now worth $269,000.

Property owners receiving their assessment will often assume that an increase in their property assessment automatically translates into an increase in their property tax bill. This is not necessarily the case, since the determination of local tax rates is ultimately based on the budget requirements of the taxing authority, in this case the City of Kimberley, RDEK, School Board etc. It also depends on how close to the average your home price is. Assessed value is multiplied by Kimberley’s tax rate to determine the actual taxes paid.

“Property owners can find a lot of information on our website including answers to many assessment-related questions, but those who feel that their property assessment does not reflect market value as of July 1, 2015 or see incorrect information on their notice, should contact BC Assessment as indicated on their notice as soon as possible in January,” said Shah.

BC Assessments has provided a list of the most expensive assessments in the region. The top five are a waterfront home in Invermere for $5,253,000; an Invermere district waterfront home for $5,157,000; a home on Kicking Horse Mountain in Golden worth $3,816,000; another Invermere rural waterfront home for $3,546,000; and one more Invermere waterfront home for $3,493,000.