1.  How is my assessment determined?
Your assessment is based on the market value of your property.

2.  What is market value?
Market value is the most probable selling price of a property, on the open market, as of a specific date, assuming a knowledgeable buyer and seller.

3.  What specific date is my market value assessment based on?
Each year your assessment is based on the market conditions of July 1 of the previous year.  So for 2020, your market value is based on the real estate market as of July 1, 2019.  The assessment also reflects the physical condition of your home on as it existed on December 31, 2019.

4.  How has COVID-19 impacted my assessment?
Since the assessment values are based on July 1, 2019 the impacts of the Covid pandemic on the real estate market are not reflected in the current assessments. The values are based on a point in time prior to the pandemic.

5.  Why does the City use this system to determine assessments?
Legislation in Alberta specifies the manner in which assessments must be prepared.  All properties in Alberta are assessed using the same parameters and guidelines.

6.  Why do I pay property tax?
Each year the City determines the budget required to pay for the services and programs for the year. As part of this process, it determines the amount of the total budget that the City must receive from property taxes.  The City of Camrose relies on property taxes as a major source of revenue to fund protective services, engineering services, roads, administration, parks / recreation, and culture.  The total property taxes collected is commonly known as a municipal levy.

7.  How are my property taxes determined?
Individual property taxes are determined by applying a tax rate to your property’s assessed value.

8.  How is the tax rate determined?
A tax rate is determined by dividing the total assessment for a municipality into the total budgeted requirements.

9.  Why is there more than one tax rate on my Assessment and Taxation Notice?
The Assessment and Taxation Notice contains three separate tax rates; a municipal tax rate, an education tax rate and a lodge authority tax rate.  The municipal tax rate is set by Camrose City Council and funds the cost of providing local government services.  The education tax rate is based on a required funding amount set by the Provincial Government and funds the school system.  Camrose City Council has no control over this amount.  The Lodge authority tax rate is based on required funding amount set by the Provincial Government and funds lodges.  Camrose City Council has no control over this amount.

10.  Have property taxes in Camrose changed for 2020?
Camrose City Council budgeted for a 0% municipal tax increase using new assessment growth to minimize the increase.

11.  How is that 0% tax increase applied?
City Council is committed to supporting businesses through a challenging economic time.  The 0% overall tax increase will be applied as a slight increase of 0.8% for residential property and a -1.5% decrease for non-residential property.

12.  What is happening with education tax in 2020?
The 2019 Education tax was delayed by the provincial election. For 2019 the City had to estimate the amount of education tax we collected from our Citizens for the Province. The actual amount was lower than our estimate, this resulted in our citizens having a credit for 2020. In addition the province lowered the 2020 education tax as part of their response to pandemic. Both of these elements have factored into a sharp drop in education tax in 2020.

13.  Have lodge authority property taxes increased?
No the lodge authority levy as set by the Provincial government has decreased.

14.  What is the overall tax increase to a typical property owner? What’s the bottom line here?
Taxes are going down in 2020! That’s right most property owners will see a tax decrease in 2020!

The average tax decrease on residential property is -1.13% when factoring in changes to all three levies; municipal, school, and lodge.

The average tax decrease on non-residential property is -2.17% when factoring in changes to all three levies; municipal, school, and lodge.

15.  Why is my personal tax change different than the -1.13% mentioned above?
Camrose City Council cannot set individual tax bills.  They control the overall tax dollars collected from all the citizens of Camrose.  Individual tax bills are determined by applying the municipal, education, and lodge tax rates to the assessment of your property.  Several factors affect your tax notice.

Properties that have experienced real growth will see a tax increase.  Changes to the property including construction, renovations, and additions are all considered real growth.

The change in your assessment can also cause the property taxes you pay to increase, remain unchanged or decrease.  For the 2020 tax year, the total assessment for all residential properties decreased by -2.43%. In order to determine if you will see a tax increase or decrease, compare the per cent change in the assessed value of your home with the overall increase in residential assessment in the City.

If your property assessment decreased -2.43% your total taxes will decrease -1.13% for the 2020 tax year.   If your property assessment decreased less than -2.43% or increased, you can expect a greater increase than the -1.13% decrease.  If your assessment decreased more than -2.43% you can expect your taxes to go down even more than -1.13%.

16.  Why are property taxes lower in another municipality?
The amount of tax dollars required to operate a municipality can differ greatly.  The services offered, as well as service levels, vary from municipality to municipality.  The other factor to consider is who is paying the majority of the property taxes.  Some municipalities have properties like pipelines paying large amounts of property tax, while others municipalities do not.

17.  Why does my neighbor pay less property tax than I do?
Property taxes are determined by applying the tax rates to the assessment.  If your neighbor is paying less tax than you are, that property must have a lower assessed value.  Considering that assessments are based on market value, the assessment department has determined that property has a lower market value than your property.

18.  What should I do if I feel my assessment or other information on my assessment and tax notice is incorrect?
You should contact the assessment and taxation staff:

Taxation Staff
P. 780.672.4426
E. taxes@camrose.ca

Assessment Staff
P. 780.678.3032
E. assessment@camrose.ca

You also have the right to file a complaint regarding the assessed value of your property.  You can find information about the complaint process at https://www.camrose.ca/en/living-here/assessment-review-board.aspx

 

 

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