A real mix in property value changes, but signs of stability across most areas in BC

AFTER years of dramatic increases in British Columbia’s annual property assessments, we are now seeing signs of moderation as the real estate market softens in some areas of the province. The soon to be released 2019 property assessments are based on what was happening in the real estate market as of July 1 this year, according to BC Assessment.

“It’s a real mix in property value changes, but the market can best be summed up as showing signs of stability across most areas of the province,” says Assessor Tina Ireland. “Changes in property assessments really depend on where you live. For example, assessed values for detached single family homes in many areas of Metro Vancouver may see a softening in value, while other markets and areas of the province will see modest increases over last year’s values.”

Based on what was happening in the real estate market as of July 1 this year, the 2019 property assessment highlights include:

  • Some Metro Vancouver detached single family homes were showing decreases in value of -5% to -10% over last year, including in areas of Vancouver, the North Shore, South Surrey, White Rock, South Delta and Richmond. Other areas were relatively stable or even showing modest increases.
  • The rest of the province could expect increases of +5 to +15% for single family home assessed values. This includes the Fraser Valley, Vancouver Island, Okanagan and the North. In many parts of central and northern Vancouver Island, values were increasing closer to +20%. And, in Kitimat, the increases were even greater in response to activity within the resource sector.
  • The residential strata market (i.e. condominiums) increased with typical values of +10 to+20% across most areas of the province. Vancouver, the North Shore and Burnaby increases were slightly less than this range while the eastern Fraser Valley increases may be higher in some cases.
  • Typical commercial and industrial properties experience continued increases across most of the province in the +10 to +20% range, with some markets around Metro Vancouver up +30%.

All British Columbia’s property owners will receive their annual property assessment notices in early January 2019. Additional price moderation has been seen later in the year, particularly in Metro Vancouver. However, to make sure property assessments are fair, they are all calculated based on the same date of July 1 every year. “When properties similar to your property are sold around July 1, those sales prices are used to calculate your assessed value,” says Ireland. “Our job is to make sure your assessment is fair and accurate as compared to your neighbours.”

During December, BC Assessment is providing notification letters to property owners whose assessments are increasing significantly more than the average change.

Visit bcassessment.ca after January 1 to access a variety of 2019 assessment information including searching and comparing 2019 property assessments as well as market movement trends.

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