Wednesday, January 08, 2014

2014 Property Assessment Notice

Someone on the blog suggested I post this as a topic. I have taken the liberty of ' re-starting' the conversation by copy/pasting it from the point of the suggestion in the previous topic. I apologize for the '2012' image.  I couldn't find anything more recent on Google.


John Sharpe said...

Blogger John Sharpe said...
I would be interested in what others have to say about the 2014 BC Assessment received recently. It seems property values for condos has dropped dramatically from last year.

Monday, January 06, 2014 5:16:00 pm Delete
Anonymous Anonymous said...
Make it a topic and see.

Monday, January 06, 2014 9:49:00 pm Delete
Blogger Barry Rueger said...
It would be interested in what others have to say about the 2014 BC Assessment received recently. It seems property values for condos has dropped dramatically from last year.

Our strata went up by a fair bit. As always, it depends on location and the local market.

John - where have condos, or any real estate in the Lower Mainland, "dropped dramatically?"

Tuesday, January 07, 2014 8:00:00 am Delete
Anonymous Anonymous said...
My 2-BR, 2 bath, F/p, 1000 sq. ft. condo in Lynn Valley has dropped in appraised value by $20,000. over the last 6 years.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014 8:41:00 am Delete
Anonymous Anonymous said...
Is that reduction in the the value of the land or the improvements?

Tuesday, January 07, 2014 10:32:00 am Delete
Anonymous Anonymous said...
This is really scary:

LAND: 244,000
BUILDINGS: 103,000

LAND: 266,000

Tuesday, January 07, 2014 12:51:00 pm Delete
Anonymous Anonymous said...
Not scary at all. The trend for land in metro Vancouver is it remains relatively stable or increases in value. However, the improvements on that land depreciate in value, just like any other manufactured item. A new house or condo will be worth more once construction is complete than the same building(s) 15 years down the road. Especially if the improvement isn't well maintained. What you're seeing is the depreciation of the building in which you live. You might see in increase in that value if you were to make improvements to it, such as update the bathroom and kitchen. But to see that assessment increase, you'd need to report it and subsequently see your property taxes increase. Ultimately, assessed value and the price you'd realize if you sold aren't likely to be the same.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014 1:54:00 pm Delete
Anonymous Anonymous said...
There is a lovely balance on this blog. Those that don't seem to really understand what is going on around them and those that do.

A comprehensive graph of the assessed values of all regions of BC was published last week in the Province. The average assessed value of all properties (including detached, attached and multifamily reeidences) in both North and West Vancouver decreased this year. Simple as that.

North Shore residences tend to command a higher price than comparable residences in other areas of the Lower Mainland as the Shore is viewed as a desirable premium area in which to live. Simple as that.

Real estate prices are self-regulating. The more desirable the area and the fewer homes available on the market the highter the price and variables to the contrary the lower the price. Simple as that.

A cautionary comment. Your taxes can still increase even if your assessment decreased. Your council will soon decide this year's "mill rate". That is the number by which your assessed value will be multiplied resulting in your property taxes owing. So if council increases the mill rate sufficiently your lower assessment will not prevent a tax increase.

Finally, there are numerous other charges all rolled in with your property tax invoice - examples: school and transit taxes. Last year these increased hugely. So even if you had no property tax increase at all the overall invoice may have increased considerably compared to the prior year due to regional and provincial charges.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014 4:46:00 pm Delete
Blogger John Sharpe said...
Well Barry, I suppose "dramatic" is a matter of perspective, but $56,000 seems a pretty dramatic drop to me in my case.

Wednesday, January 08, 2014 7:04:00 pm Delete

Anonymous said...

I hope nobody is getting the ideathat an assessor actually observed the state of maintenance of your buildings.

It's just a piece of software grinding out how your properties characteristics fit the parameters used by the assessment software, such as building age, square footage, sales around your area as of July last year and god knows what else.

Last year my Lynn Valley Single Family dropped in assessed value ( both the building and the land ) and this year it has rebounded $40,000 again (around 5%) although I made NO changes in the property or buildings.

Anonymous said...

Well, last year my 2 bed in Lower Lonsdale dropped 10% this year it's rebounded 10% with a remark on the assessment notice : due to development...

very strange and if I was a suspicious person I would accuse the City of using this to counteract all the unhappy taxpayers in the City.

Anonymous said...

What haas the 'City' got to do with it?

Barry Rueger said...

I'd appreciate it if someone could point us to a primer on how these assessments are calculated.

From what I recall of the monthly Lynn Valley Life summaries prices around here have be fairly flat, but our assessment jumped.

Anonymous said...

Following is pasted from LynnValleyLife re: last Dec.

"Single Family Homes:
There were 4 detached homes sold in December with an average sale price of $961,683 (median = $842,250).
The average sale price achieved was less than list price by 5.49%.
Detached homes that sold in December took an average of 123 days to sell (median = 96.5 days).

There were no attached sales in December."

Anonymous said...

1. A municipality has no authority over the assessed value of a property. This value is determined by BC Assessment. The City cannot conspire to inflate or deflate assessed values.

2. From the BC Assessment website:
Assessments are the estimate of a property’s market value as of July 1, 2013 and physical condition as of October 31, 2013. This common valuation date ensures there is an equitable property assessment base for property taxation.

3. If one wants additional information on the details of assessment surely it is self-evident that one would view BC Assessment's website and/or contact them directly.

Barry Rueger said...

Well Anon - I challenge you to find anything substantial on the BC Assessment website. All that I could track down was:

What is market value?

Market value for assessment purposes in British Columbia is the most probable price of a property in an open market between a willing purchaser and seller.

How is an assessment of property made?

BC Assessment has a professional appraisal staff and an extensive database that is periodically updated with information gathered through appraisal inspections. Municipal and provincial agencies inform BC Assessment of land title changes, building permit approvals and zoning adjustments. BC Assessment also considers a property's unique characteristics, including location, size, layout, shape, age, finish, quality, carports, garages, sundecks and condition of buildings. All these variables are considered when valuing each property.

Why did the value of my property change?

Property values usually change as a result of real estate market forces and these forces vary by property type and location. If a property was upgraded, the value will likely increase.

All quite vague in terms of how they actually calculate these numbers.

Anonymous said...

Why not contact them and ask them for their process?

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Based on my limited access to this issue I say you must hire a lawyer to look after your question to the B.C. Assessment Authority.

I recall when Nancy Van Insburghe, the woman who lost access to her house in the 2005 Blueridge mudslide due to safety issues, tried to contest her property assessment on her own and then she hired lawyer Jay Straith and won!

Anonymous said...

I believe Nancy was trying to obtain a higher price than assessed value.

That is different than trying to figure out how BC Assessment arrives at their evaluation which they will describe if you contact them.

If you want to contest the evaluation there is a process in place for that as well.

Doesn't seem very daunting.

Anonymous said...

I had a great breakfast today at Cheers. It was the three Ps. Presidents, pancakes, and politics.

The BC NDP is ready for bear. I am pumped up as were many new people who I met today.

There was some talk about the lack of participation in politics. This must change! We must encourage everyone we know to start to pay attention to all levels of government.

Anonymous said...

Well 3:07pm, aside from your enthusiastic (but off topic) cheerleading for the NDP, do you actually have anything to say about the topic being discussed?

Anonymous said...

The BC NDP is now ready for bear? That must have been an amazing breakfast, perhaps they should have had it before the election.

JOhn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Back on topic.....

Would anyone care to explain just how the Mill Rate is determined exactly?

Anonymous said...

Technically there are several 'mill rates'. Each property class (industrical, commercial etc) has their own mill rate. You are probably interested in the Residential Mill Rate.

The District sets their entire budget.

The Revenue side of that budget is split into all of the different sources of revenue including fees, charges, interest from invesments etc. Whatever remains has to be collected from taxes.

The portion to be collected from taxes is then split into the various property tax classes (again industrial commercial etc)

The Residential portion is then divided by the net assessable value of that property class, (ie the total assessed value of all of our houses combined).

That number becomes the residential mill rate.

Multiply your house's assessed value by the rate and you get the amount you owe.

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Lyle Craver said...

Residential taxes have always been a wealth tax where it's assumed if your house is worth twice the neighbor's you have twice the ability to pay.

I have never felt that was a just method for businesses since if I invest in new equipment and double my sales I am clearly able to pay more while if my next door neighbor sells his property for twice what it's assessed (for instance to an "investor immigrant") that will drive all the neighbors' assessments sky high since BC Assessment will say "oh we obviously underestimated this neighborhood".

In the second scenario the merchant's ability to pay has not increased but his assessment dramatically increases for reasons he doesn't control.

Throw in the fact that BC Assessment is now introducing assessments based on a capitalized lease value (i.e. if you're a lessee and your landlord raises your rents, the assessment goes up) and you can get some whopping tax increases - we got a 21% tax increase in 2013 for exactly that reason.

That's why I say I don't think property value is a fair or reasonable method of assessing municipal taxes for commercial and industrial properties.

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