If you own a home in Calgary, you should have received your annual property assessment notice by now. Your annual property assessment notice is not a tax bill; it is simply the assessed value of your property. Your annual property tax bill is based on this assessed amount. I often receive questions about this process from new and veteran homeowners. Here are a few of the most frequently asked questions about property assessments and taxes, along with some additional resources that provide more information.
Why do I have to pay property taxes?
The City of Calgary operating budget is funded primarily by property taxes. This income supports the delivery of services such as protective services, transportation, waste removal, and parks maintenance. A significant portion of residential property taxes is remitted to the Government of Alberta.
How is my property assessed?
The City of Calgary assesses residential properties on an annual basis. Properties are assessed using two main criteria.
- The estimated market value of the property as of July 1.
The market value of the property is influenced by factors such as location and lot size.
- The condition of the property as of December 31.
The condition of the property includes things like finished living areas above and below grade, age of the home, location within the community, and type of building.
Can I appeal the property assessment?
Yes! You can challenge the property assessment. The City of Calgary has a designated Customer Review period that runs from January 5, 2016 to March 7, 2016.
How do I challenge the property assessment?
Step 1: Carefully review your assessment. Check that the property information is correct and if possible, review comparable properties in your area to determine if your assessment is equitable. You can have your Realtor determine the final selling price for similar properties as of July 1.
Step 2: Contact a City of Calgary assessor during the designated Customer Review Period. An assessor can be reached Monday to Friday between 8:00am and 4:30pm at 403-268-2888. You can also contact an assessor via TTY, fax, mail or in person.
Step 3: If you still disagree with your assessment after speaking with a City of Calgary assessor, you can file a complaint with the Assessment Review Board. This step must be taken during the designated Customer Review period. The Assessment Review Board requires you to file a complaint and they have made it easy for you to do this online! You will need to submit supporting evidence and attend a hearing. Attendance at the hearing is not mandatory but it is helpful if you can attend. Within about 6 weeks of your hearing, you will be notified of the Calgary Assessment Review Board’s decision.
Step 4: If you or the City of Calgary disagrees with the decision made by the Review Board, an application for leave to appeal can be made. This must be filed with the Court of Queen’s Bench within 30 days of the decision made by the Review Board.
For more information, check out these links: