The latest property value data from BC Assessment was released on January 4th. Homeowners have already started to receive their 2021 assessment notices. As per the new statistics, property values in Terrace rose between one per cent and 14 per cent. Across BC property values were up a total of 4.2 per cent. Prince Rupert and Smithers property values saw greater percentage hikes and Kitimat property values dropped by a modest amount.

Northern BC Property Assessments issued

BC Assessment shared the latest property value data and mailed out notices to almost 250,000 Northern BC residents. These notices and the figures reflect market values as of July 1, 2020. BC Assessment Deputy Assessor Jarret Krantz says 

“For most of Northern B.C.’s homes, there has been a moderate increase compared to last year’s assessments. In some instances, there has been a larger increase in rural areas within the region, particularly with lakefront properties.”

The total value of BC real estate rose by 4.2 per cent to $2.01 trillion according to the new data. However, property value increases varied from location to location across BC. Single family homes in Burns Lake rose in value by an average of 21 per cent. Smithers homes increased in value by 15 per cent, and in Prince George home values rose by seven per cent. 

Moderate increase to Terrace property values

BC Assessment categorizes properties into Residential Single Family Homes and Residential Strata Homes such as condos and townhouses. In Terrace, in the 2019 data released in early 2020, the typical value given for a Single Family Home was $373,000. The latest 2021 data release puts family home values up by just one per cent to $375,000. In contrast, Residential Strata Home prices in Terrace have, as per BC Assessment data, risen by 14 per cent to a typical value of $189,000.

Kitimat bucks the BC trend

In Kitimat, BC Assessment puts property values as falling. Values are down one per cent for Single Family Homes and two per cent for Strata Homes. Kitimat is one of just a handful of BC regions where assessed values have fallen. Adam Coultish, Mortgage Adviser at Dominion Lending Centres Northwest and Terrace, Kitimat, and Prince Rupert Remax owner shares his perspective on this fall in property values for Kitimat:

“We’ve seen the market stabilize in Kitimat over the past year, even slow slightly, compared to the boom of 2018 after the LNG Project announcement. So, although property values flattened, even dropped a fraction, values are up substantially overall in recent years.

Our communities are still expecting substantial growth over the coming few years as the economic development in our area clearly continues to grow.” 

Prince Rupert property values beat the average 

For Prince Rupert, the value of Single Family Homes has risen by seven per cent. This is well above the average BC property value increase trend. Actual values have grown from an average of $276,000 in 2020’s assessment to $296,000 this year. 

Property values in Smithers increase a significant 15 per cent. 

Bucking the BC trend in the opposite direction to Kitimat is Smithers. This location’s Single Family Home residents may see an average BC Assessment property value increase of 15 per cent. For Strata Homes in Smithers, property values have risen an average of 3 per cent.

BC Assessment explains that the new published data “provides estimates of typical 2020 versus 2021 assessed values of properties throughout the region.” Assessor Krantz adds:

“It is important to understand that changes in property assessments do not automatically translate into a corresponding change in property taxes.” 

For homeowners selling or refinancing it is also important to note that formally appraised property values, real estate listing values, and actual selling prices, may all vary from BC Assessment’s estimates, sometimes substantially so. 

The number of Northern BC home sales is already at its highest since 2006. Demand for homes continues to push property values and sale prices higher. New home buyers can take advantage of today’s low interest rates when purchasing. 

For existing homeowners a combination of increasing property values and low interest rates means it’s the perfect time to consider refinancing a BC property. It’s possible for many homeowners to access increased equity, consolidate debt, or simply reduce monthly mortgage payments. 

If you need advice on mortgage refinancing options talk to Adam Coultish, Dominion Lending Centres Northwest, today on 250 638 3302.