Small changes in assessed property values

  • Jan. 4, 2012 5:00 p.m.

By Alex Rinfret–Property owners on Haida Gwaii should receive their 2012 assessment notices in the next few days. “Most homes in the area are remaining stable in value compared to last year’s assessment roll,” said deputy assessor Colleen McCombe. Overall, the total assessed value of all properties on Haida Gwaii has decreased to $419.5 million this year, from $437.9 million last year. In Queen Charlotte, most properties are worth about the same as they were last year, Ms McCombe said. Port Clements and Masset properties have declined in value by an average of about 5 percent, and in Sandspit the average single family home is worth about 2 percent less this year. In the rural areas, most properties will see no change or a small decrease. “The largest declines were on oceanfront property and acreages,” Ms McCombe said. The assessments reflect local real estate market trends, she said. “Property owners who feel that their property assessment does not reflect market value as of July 1, 2011, or see incorrect information on their notice should contact our office as indicated on their notice as soon as possible in January,” Ms McCombe said. “If a property owner is still concerned about their assessment after speaking to one of our appraisers, they may submit a notice of complaint (appeal) by Jan. 31, for an independent review by a property assessment review panel.” The assessments will be used later this year to calculate how much property tax homeowners will pay. Local governments make the decision about how much tax will be collected, and a lower assessment does not necessarily mean a lower tax bill. Ms McCombe said that in response to concerns voiced by islanders last year about the impact of slow mail service on the assessment process, BC Assessment sent a letter out in early December to all property owners on Haida Gwaii. The letter suggests a couple of other methods for homeowner to obtain their 2012 assessment information if they do not get the assessment in the mail in the first week of January. They can view their assessment over the internet at evaluebc.bcassessment.ca, or they can call the Northwest Assessment office at 250-638-1116 and request that their notice be faxed to them. Starting in 2013, homeowners can receive the assessment by epost, a free internet-based delivery service.