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Typical $350,000 home in Nanaimo will see city portion of taxes increase by $55.95 this year

Nanaimo residential property owners will pay city taxes of $5.672 per $1,000 assessed property value this year, if council approves a tax rates bylaw coming before council Monday.

A 'typical' home valued at $350,000 will see taxes increase by $55.95 for the city portion alone, an earlier staff member report stated. With previously-approved water and garbage rate increases, the total increase is $90.48, or 3.6 per cent.

However, the tax rates bylaw before council also includes tax rates for other agencies, such as the libraries, the Regional District of Nanaimo and the Nanaimo Regional Hospital District Board, that will add to tax bills. The city does not keep those revenues, but collects the taxes on behalf of the other organizations.

 

In total, the residential property taxes will be $7.6425 per $1,000, although that number does not yet include rates for Nanaimo-Ladysmith school district.

The average assessment change for residential property in the city was a 2.1 per cent decrease for this year. That detail is important, because a property owner's tax bill will increase or decrease by varying amounts depending on how their assessment changes.

For example, if a household sees their assessment dip further below the 2.1 per cent average may see a lower increase, or may even see a net reduction in their tax bill. On the other hand, if a household sees their assessment climb from the previous year, they will likely face a larger increase.

"It doesn't take very much of a change to have a big impact," said Brian Clemens, finance director for the city.

The city has posted a property tax calculator on its website that allows residents to punch in their 2012 and 2013 assessments for an estimate of how their tax bill might change for this upcoming year (www.nanaimo.ca/prop-erty_tax/estimator.aspx).

The city has budgeted for a residential tax revenue increase of 2.9 per cent. Originally, the increase was slated to reach 3.3 per cent. But a higher-than-expected increase new construction in the first quarter of 2013 allowed finance officials to blunt the increase facing homeowners.

The city is raising taxes by one per cent each year for the next five years for long-term infrastructure replacement.

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