Aylmer property values up 6.77%
---Gatineau tables property assessment roll for next three years
The Ville de Gatineau tabled its property assessment roll evaluation for 2021-2023 on November 24, seeing a continual rise in local property values - notably in the west. Gatineau’s Director of the Service d’évaluation Alexandra Boivin explained that the city’s current assessment roll was wrapping up this year and that the new one would come into effect in January of 2021 and would be in place until the end of 2023.
Noting that properties need to be evaluated, with consideration to real estate market conditions, 18 months before compiling a new assessment roll, Boivin clarified that this one includes values taken into account before July 1, 2019. As the main tool to calculate municipal and school taxes, the assessment roll notably intends to ensure that the city’s management of property taxes is fair and equitable.
--Property values keep rising
In total, the assessment indicated 101,826 units in the city – 1,286 more than the previous one – counting 93,449 residential units making up almost 92 per cent of the entire evaluation. Collectively, the assessment roll is valued at approximately $40.2 billion for 2021, compared to $37.1 billion in 2018, which indicates that property values have increased by 5.51 per cent on average.
In the Aylmer sector, property values went up 6.77 per cent, compared to Hull’s 6.73 per cent, Gatineau’s 5.84 per cent, Buckingham’s 3.35 per cent, and 2.77 percent in Masson-Angers. By district, Aylmer property values (5,853 units) went up 6.48 per cent, compared to Lucerne’s (6,326 units) 6.66 per cent increase, Deschênes’ (7,295 units) rise of 7.13 per cent, and a 6.09 per cent increase in value for properties in the Plateau (8,053).
The median value for single-family homes is $256,000, and the median value for co-properties is $168,900. While 36 per cent of residential properties (33,981) are valued within three per cent of the median value, 34 per cent of residential properties (31,725 properties) are under the median value, and 30 per cent (27,743 properties) are valued above the median value.
On average, basic residential property values went up 6.10 per cent; non-residential units had their value go up 1.98 per cent; industrial properties got a 4.34 per cent upgrade; properties of six or more units went up 8.09 per cent; while agriculture and forestry units went up 10.56 per cent, and vacant lots 15.66 per cent.
--Matching tax adjustments with value variations
Gatineau Treasurer and Director of the Service des finances Mario St-Pierre clarified that rises in property values as part of the assessment roll don’t generate extra revenue for the city, since property taxes get adjusted in proportion to average variations in different taxation categories - ultimately cancelling out the assessment roll’s impacts on the city’s tax revenue.
He added that if a particular property’s value rises above its categorical average, it will probably get a higher tax increase to what may be decreed by Municipal council – noting that the opposite would be probable for properties whose values drop lower than their categorical average. So, for residential properties whose values are going up on average by around six per cent, taxes will be reduced by around six per cent. Non-residential properties, whose values are going up on average by around two per cent, will see their taxes reduced by around two per cent. To prevent the new assessment roll from having harsh impacts, provincial legislation allows municipalities to spread property values over three years.
As a result, Municipal council’s recently proposed 2.1 per cent property tax increase will cost more or less $61 for residential properties with a median value of $256,000. Without spreading values over three years, taxes would rise to $180 on top of the municipal council-imposed tax hike, St-Pierre said. He added that the city’s residential rate in 2021 will be around 94 per cent of what it was in 2020.
--How to contact the city with questions, clarifications or concerns
The new evaluations are available on the city’s website, and taxpayers will receive an evaluation notice in January with their municipal tax bill for 2021 and a flyer explaining the new assessment roll. For those with specific questions or concerns about the evaluation, residents can consult the Service d’évaluation at (819) 243-5594. Any corrections to possible errors will be done free of charge.
If not addressed, people can submit a revision request by filling out a document titled Demande de revision du role d’évaluation foncière – available on the city’s website and at various municipal service counters – before May 1, 2021.
--More on the assessment roll
Boivin said the city has modernized its process by taking a number of steps between the rolls for 2015 to 2021 to even out the workload, and monitoring its results as it went along. Each property gets assigned an actual value – the most probable price to be paid for it at a given time – that is largely determined by comparing sales of similar properties in comparable environments. “When we evaluate a property, we consider all factors that could improve or influence the reduction in property value,” Boivin said.
Properties that generate revenue are evaluated based on their net potential revenue, while single-use properties get assessed based on a depreciated replacement cost method. According to the Loi sur la fiscalité municipale du Québec, assessment rolls are compiled over three years and indicate the collective value of taxes for all properties in the city during a given time frame. Boivin said the Service d’évaluation started working on the new assessment roll in September of 2019, along with 14 other evaluators working under different supervisors.
Despite how complicated the evaluation process can be, due to Gatineau’s great diversity of buildings, the process was a success, Boivin said, adding that most of the work was done via telecommuting. The new assessment roll’s value fluctuations demonstrate price variations from 2016 to 2019. Provincial assessment roll standards are established by the Ordre des évaluateurs agrées du Québec and are also framed under provincial law, to ensure professionalism and impartiality.