As its municipal government raised property tax rates in their latest budget, the City of Montreal is set to receive a larger than expected windfall of property revenue in the coming years.
How? Property value assessments.
Later this year, homeowners across the island will receive a new property value assessment that will be the baseline for what the city thinks your home is worth. It’s this number that’s multiplied by the property tax rate—called the “mill rate”—that gives the city the total on your bill. It was the mill rate that went up recently.
The problem for many residents is the city hasn’t updated its assessments in several years, and North East Mortgages President Terry Kilakos expects the assessments delivered later this year to show a significant increase in value.
Kilakos said the time is now to start planning ahead so you aren’t sandbagged by a bigger-than-expected tax bill when the next assessments come through. Keep a close eye on the new assessment when it does arrive, as you may be able to fight it.
“There will be a new amount when the new values of properties comes out; you need to pay close attention to that. And if that amount you’re being taxed on makes sense, keep it,” Kilakos said. “But if you feel that the city’s unfairly taxing you, then you need to contest the value.”
There’s a formal process for contesting the value of a property, and you can find more information about how to contest a valuation — what forms you need, where to find them, and how to file them — on the city’s website.
Be aware, there is a fee for requesting an assessment that starts at $75 for homes worth less than $500,000 and rises to $1,000 for properties worth over $5 million.