“People think my assessment went up 10%, my taxes will go up 10%,” says Mr. Clark. “If your assessment goes up exactly at the average [of all homes in your city], you see no tax increase. If the average went up 26%, and you only went up 10%, your taxes would go down.” (via Here’s how you might be able to trim your property tax bill | Taxes | Personal Finance | Financial Post)
- Mr. Clark fights assessments all the time and says every province has a mechanism whereby you can lower the assessment on your home and ultimately the amount of property taxes you owe. The cost of appealing an assessment varies from $30 in Ontario to as high as $1,000 in Quebec.
- Before you appeal, start by making sure you know what date in time your assessment is based on and then decide whether the value is fair compared to similar homes in your area. Some jurisdictions will provide free information on comparable properties in your area.
- One key thing to consider is whether you’ve done some major renovation that the people who do the assessments know nothing about. You might be opening up a can of worms.
- “Check the facts that the assessment authority provides in their records and make sure they are correct,” said Mr. Clark. “Sometimes it’s just best to keep your head down.”
- But you shouldn’t be too worried an appeal is going to raise your assessment, something that does happen but is rare. “They are not vengeful but you don’t want to go in screaming like a banshee. You always have the right of appeal and on housing it’s much easier than commercial property because the [appeal] fees are lower and there is more data to base your opinion on.”
I gotta do this, but keep on forgetting..