Property assessments across the province continue to climb with new data revealing a nearly 22% increase since a year ago.
The vast majority of B.C.’s total real estate value of $2.44 trillion is housed in the Lower Mainland, according to information posted Tuesday to B.C. Assessment’s website.
The province’s most densely populated region accounts for $1.75 trillion of that value. More than $23.7 billion of the Lower Mainland’s updated assessments is from new construction, subdivisions and the rezoning of properties.
"The widely reported heighted demand among homebuyers during the COVID-19 pandemic is reflected in the upward movement of property values across the province including 10-30% increases throughout the Lower Mainland,” B.C. Assessment deputy assessor Bryan Murao said in a statement.
“City of Vancouver condos, however, are on the lower end of the changes, generally with single-digit increases, whereas homes in the Fraser Valley suburbs are changing higher compared to most of Metro Vancouver."
Part of this trend could be tied to more of the labour force shifting to remote working, meaning fewer buyers are putting a premium on living closer to downtown Vancouver.
For example, Chilliwack (40%), Abbotsford (+38%), Hope (+45%) and the City of Langley (+39%) all saw assessments go up quite dramatically compared with cities further west.
Assessments in the City of Vancouver (+16%), Burnaby (+19%) and Richmond (+21%) were more muted in comparison.
Surrey (+34%) also experienced a notable jump in assessed values.
Assessments, which affect homeowners’ property taxes, are being mailed out this week.
If a property owner is concerned about the assessed value, they may either contact B.C. Assessment about their concerns or else subsequently submit an appeal for an independent review by a property assessment review panel if they’re not satisfied after speaking to an appraiser.