BC Residents and Their Property Assessment

Posted date : Nov 22, 2006.Back to list

By Rick Thorpe
Minister of Small Business and Revenue, and Minister Responsible for the British Columbia Assessment Authority
November 22, 2006

As many snowbirds have headed south or will be doing so during the winter months, I would like to remind those who own homes in British Columbia that the deadline for appealing a 2007 property assessment notice is January 31, 2007.

In early January, more than 1.75 million property owners across British Columbia will receive their annual assessment notices in the mail, and many may note the assessed value of their property has increased.

This is certainly a sign of the times. British Columbia's economy is experiencing unprecedented growth – buoyed by increased consumer confidence, one of the lowest unemployment rates in history, and unparalleled investment. In turn, real estate markets in most regions of the province
have been very active.

For those who have seen their homes appreciate considerably in recent years, and newcomers to British Columbia, I would like to clarify the relationship between market value, property assessments and municipal tax rates.

BC Assessment was established as a provincial Crown corporation in 1974 to produce assessments that are fair, equitable and uniform throughout British Columbia. BC Assessment is required to estimate the fair market value of all properties in the province as of July 1 each year.

When estimating a property's market value, an appraiser analyzes current sales in the area and other characteristics, such as size, age, quality, condition, view and location. If you have any questions or concerns about your assessment, you are welcome to speak to an appraiser at your local BC Assessment office. Each BC Assessment office offers convenient customer service options, including counter service during regular business hours, toll-free phone numbers, email and fax. Both BC Assessment's website, www.bcassessment.ca  and your local phone directory feature contac  information. The province also has an independent complaint and appeal process, outlined on your assessment notice and detailed at www.sbr.gov.bc.ca/parp/ online. You can also access information on the complaints and assessment appeal process, toll-free in North America, by calling 1-877-356-9313.

Every spring, local taxing authorities set property tax rates, apply them to each property's assessed value and send the owners property tax notices. In incorporated areas like cities, municipalities and villages, the local government collects the taxes; in unincorporated areas, the Surveyor of Taxes is the collector.

As the minister responsible for BC Assessment, my focus is on ensuring this organization provides the highest level of customer service. This means going beyond providing fair and equitable assessments, with a service commitment to you to be reliable, accessible, uniform and respectful.

BC Assessment will continue to develop new and innovative services to better serve British Columbians, like the online appeal form on BC Assessment's website, www.bcassessment.ca, for use in January 2007. There is more information than ever before on the websites of BC Assessment and my ministry, in plain language, to help you understand property assessments and appeals.

BC Assessment also provides exceptional service to British Columbia's multicultural audiences, through some translated online publications and staff who speak various languages.

I encourage you to find out more about this organization by visiting the website noted above or contacting your local BC Assessment office. Again, please keep in mind that if you wish to appeal your 2007 assessment in British Columbia, you must do so by January 31, 2007.

Click the link below to review the pdf document.

Related links
Your Property Assessment and Rigth to Review