Kitsilano Condo

Metro Property Values Surge Dramatically – Vancouver Sun

Residential property values in Vancouver and its closest neighbouring municipalities increased substantially over the past year.

Residential market values increased 13.03 per cent in West Vancouver, 12.17 per cent in Vancouver, 12.07 per cent in Burnaby, 9.22 per cent in Delta, 9.12 per cent in Coquitlam, 9.11 per cent in New Westminster, 8.84 per cent in North Vancouver District, 7.58 per cent in Surrey, and 6.55 per cent in Langley township.

A rise in a property's assessment does not always mean municipal taxes will increase. What typically makes the difference is if an assessment rises or falls beyond the average.

The Canada Line rapid transit route between Richmond and downtown Vancouver and Richmond's continuing popularity with buyers from Asia were factors in that community's substantial increase, suggested Re/ Max Westcoast realtor Anne Marie Kirkpatrick, a lifelong Richmond resident.

"That has made some difference -- the transportation," Kirkpatrick said in a phone interview.

"It seems that there is a lot of mainland China buyers and a lot of immigration from Asia, and Richmond seems to be one of their favourite spots. Other than that, it's great place to live. It's close to Vancouver, and the airport is here."

Kirkpatrick said she noticed a jump in demand for property that coincided with the opening of the Canada Line, known during construction as the Richmond-Airport-Vancouver (RAV) line.

Lower-priced "investment"-type condos in the Lansdowne mall area "were normally lower than similar condos more over in the Brighouse-Richmond Centre area. As soon as that line came in they increased [in price] instantly and it became the hot area.

Owners of the 1.9 million properties in B.C. can check online for the latest figures. Notices with expanded information were given to Canada Post on Dec. 31 and will be arriving in the mail this week.

Online users can go to www.bcassessment.bc.caand click on "e-valueBC" under "For Public" to see the new figure for their own and neighbouring properties. BC Assessment's web-site will also show the value of sales for the surrounding area in 2010.

For most properties, BC Assessment shows the assessed value as of July 1 of the previous year. Their actual value depends on the market at a particular time.

BC Assessment appraisers take into account criteria such as size, age, quality, condition and location of individual properties.

This year's deadline to appeal assessments is Jan. 31. BC Assessment encourages those who disagree with assessments to call or visit their office to try to resolve the matter.

The Crown corporation's office was closed Monday and reopens today.

While individual property values are online, further details on regional and provincial statistics and graphs will be coming out today. That information will include the total value of the provincial assessment roll, year-over-year changes in assessment values in municipalities and new construction.

Provincially, the assessment roll reached $969 billion in January 2010.

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