BC property taxes set to soar

By Steve Randall
Home prices in some British Columbia markets may be easing but property taxes are rising and for some homeowners it will be a sharp hike.

BC Assessments will begin mailing homeowners in the new year and its expected that 5 per cent will be told that their taxes will increase according to assessor Jason Grant.

Grant told the Vancouver Sun that in Vancouver, Burnaby, Richmond, Surrey, the Tri-cities, Squamish and the North Shore could face hikes of between 30 and 50 per cent.

Assessments are based on a ‘uniform valuation date’ of July 1, 2016. Since then, Vancouver and some other markets have seen prices drop.

Meanwhile, those with homes in the Central Okanagan market have been given an indication of the rise they can expect. BC Assessments says that there will be increases for both residential and commercial properties.

"The preliminary market analysis for 2017 property assessments indicates significant increases over last year's assessment values," says Deputy Assessor Tracy Wall. "Increases of 5 to 20 per cent will be typical for single-family homes in Kelowna, West Kelowna, Westbank and Lake Country. Typical strata residential increases will be in the 5 to 30 per cent range."

Wall highlights that property assessments do not necessarily mean higher taxes, which are based on average changes within each neighbourhood.

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