The assessed value of an average single-family home in North Cowichan has risen a whopping 37 per cent, from $489,000 to $668,000, over the last year, according to the latest figures by BC Assessment.
In fact, like last year, all regions of the Cowichan Valley saw home assessments rise on average over the last year in BC Assessment’s valuation of homes across the province, which is based on what was happening in the real estate market as of July 1, 2021.
But while last year’s increases ranged from five to 10 per cent in the Valley, this year’s increases range from an incredible 35 per cent to 52 per cent.
The City of Duncan saw a 35 per cent increase, from $388,000 to $523,000; the Town of Lake Cowichan had a 42 per cent increase, from $367,000 to $521,000, and the Town of Ladysmith saw a 36 per cent increase, from $475,000 to $644,000.
In rural areas in the Valley, BC Assessment provides the increases in percentages.
The highest increase is in Youbou, which saw the average house values rise 59 per cent from last year, followed by Cobble Hill at 48.4 per cent, Shawnigan Lake east and west at 49.3 per cent, Cowichan Bay at 41 per cent, Mill Bay at 38 per cent, and Shawnigan Lake north at 37.7 per cent.
Assessed values for condos and townhouses in 2022 are not listed specifically by Cowichan Valley community in the assessment, but all communities on the Island have seen increases in value, ranging from 15 per cent to 27 per cent, in 2022.
The assessed value of the approximately 382,000 properties that are part of BC Assessment’s Vancouver Island region rose to $343 billion this year, up 27.5 per cent from $269 billion in 2021.
James Island, located close to North Saanich, led the way as the most expensive property in the Vancouver Island area with an assessed value of $54.7 million in 2022, followed by the acreage at 1365 Dorcas Point Rd. in Nanoose Bay, valued at just over $22 million; Samuel Island, valued at just over $19 million; 3160 Humber Rd. in Oak Bay, valued at $17.87 million; and 1850 Lands End Rd. in North Saanich, valued at $17.39 million.
Property owners on Vancouver Island can expect to receive their 2022 assessment notices in the coming days.
“Vancouver Island’s real estate market has increased in value across all property types over the past year,” said Vancouver Island deputy assessor Jodie MacLennan in a news release.
“Increases of 15 to 35 percent are generally evident for single-family dwellings, strata homes, industrial and commercial properties throughout the island, with notably larger percent increases in both central and northern Vancouver Island communities.”
BC Assessment’s website at bcassessment.ca includes more details about the 2022 assessments, property information and trends such as lists of 2022’s top valued residential properties across the province.
The website also provides self-service access to a free, online property assessment search service that allows anyone to search, check and compare 2022 property assessments for anywhere in the province.
Property owners can unlock additional property search features by registering for a free BC Assessment custom account to check a property’s 10-year value history, store and access favourites, create comparisons, monitor neighbourhood sales, and use BC Assessment’s interactive map.
“Property owners can find a lot of valuable information on our website including answers to many assessment-related questions, but those who feel that their property assessment does not reflect market value as of July 1, 2021 or see incorrect information on their notice, should contact BC Assessment as indicated on their notice as soon as possible in January,” said MacLennan.
“If a property owner is still concerned about their assessment after speaking to one of our appraisers, they may submit a Notice of Complaint (Appeal) by Jan. 31, for an independent review by a Property Assessment Review Panel.”
The Property Assessment Review Panels, independent of BC Assessment, are appointed annually by the provincial government, and typically meet between Feb. 1 and March 15 to hear formal complaints.
“It is important to understand that changes in property assessments do not automatically translate into a corresponding change in property taxes,” said MacLennan.
“As indicated on your assessment notice, how your assessment changes relative to the average change in your community is what may affect your property taxes.”
MacLennan said if your property was impacted by the 2021 floods, mudslides or wildfires, you should contact BC Assessment toll-free at 1-866-825-8322 during January once you receive your assessment notice.
“With your help, we can work together to make sure your property is valued correctly,” she said.