BC Assessment values

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BC Assessment posted updated property assessed values on January 1st, 2019, assessed on July 1, 2018. I use these values as a conservative value when calculating my networth. All my properties have gone up in value.  My most recent acquisition in Campbell River is still valued at less than what I purchased it for.  These values do not represent "market value" but I like to use this site often as I check recent sold prices near my investments.  Here is my breakdown:

Surrey townhouse increased 22% (Almost double what I purchased it for in 2010)

Sechelt house increased 10%

Nanaimo house 1 (desirable area) increased 7%

Nanaimo house 2 (less desirable area compared to #1) increased 12%

Campbell River house increased 10%

My investment portfolio assessed value went up approx. $220,000.

My primary residence (Richmond) went up 13%, over $160,000. (Increased 350% since purchase in 2005)

How do your properties compare?

How do your assessed values compare to comps in the area? I'm not in BC but I've found assessed values to be quite inaccurate compared to real value - for example my current residence has an assessed value of about 340k, but we're getting an appraisal next week for a refi and expecting the appraisal to come in around 500-525k, which is where the comps are at. Of course I have no complaint about my assessed value being low because that's less I'm spending on property taxes! 

@Brianne H.

I am not a real estate agent but it seems nothing is currently selling... like my neighbours house has been on the market for two months at $1.5M and it is assessed at $2M (to be part of a future land assembly).

The assessed value is from July1/18. I have noticed other sold prices from December/18 to be below assessed value and sold homes from earlier in 2018 to be above assessed value.  I am in it for the long haul, but its nice to see property continuously going up at approximately 10% (conservative) in BC. 

Then again, we are expecting a recession in 2020...

@Shaidah K. Not much selling in general, or just higher priced stuff? I used to live in New Westminster so am somewhat familiar with the lower mainland, but that was also before I took a keen interest in investing.

What indications are you seeing for an expected recession in 2020? More of a local, or provincial recession? 

@Brianne H.

I listen to the VancouverRealEstatePodcast.com. Check out episode 144 and episode 142. There may be other discussion about it but both of those episodes are share data explaining why a recession is coming. I am not an expert and trying not to believe everything in the media but those two guests from that podcast are "experts".  

As for assessed values vs. comps, I noticed that properties in the areas of my investments that sold around July1/18 have an assessed value at or very close to the sold price.  I know last year, BC Assessment changed their way of assessing properties to be closer to market values. Hopefully your appraisal comes it at or above what you are hoping!  

It's interesting to see what prices across BC have done according to the "assessment value". I have a few houses in Prince George, they went up 19%, 20% and 11%. My property went up 8% in Parksville, which is bellow the average in Parksville, but it's because it's on the higher price point of over $800,000. Port Alberni is still my winner at 25%. Port is up 60% in the last 3 years!

Generally, the cheapest properties in an area increase the most, and the most expensive places take the biggest hit when prices come down. 

I didn't know about that Vancouver real estate podcast. I'll have to check it out for sure.

I have heard we are at the start of a recession, but all the BC real estate boards are predicting it to be short lived and actually end in 2020. I think the lower mainland is going to see a bigger hit than the rest of BC. It's over inflated. When based on the average incomes, people need to spend 88% of their income to afford a housing, there's a problem. It should be 30% of income for housing. When you can still pick up a house for well under $300,000 in Port Alberni or Prince George, common sense tells me that that is still sustainable.

You are absolutely right @Shaidah K. when you noticed that houses sold at the start of the years sold above the assessment and houses later in the year sold for less. The number of sales dropped by about 30% across BC  around August. Prices didn't drop much, but stuff started sitting on the market for longer. People either sold for less, or took their property off the market. Prince George was the only place in BC that I found an increase in the number of sales throughout the year. (And the Kitimat area, but that is self explanatory)

BC assessment had my properties a bit overvalued in my opinion but it would be hard to argue since you have to go to court or talk to a board or something so just not worth it.

@Shaidah K sounds like you are killing it and doing well :)

@James Ma Having your properties overvalued isn't such a bad thing... If you need to get a line of credit on them, it could be beneficial and it gives you more equity in the property. Your taxes will go up but I don't think the increase will be too astronomical.

As for killing it, I am trying to reach FI by 45 so this is how I plan to get there. This morning I listened to vancouverrealestatepodcast-151 with Janet Lapage who has gotten to 10,000 units in 5 years. She lives in North Van and invests in the US.  Now she is killing it!  I am just on a stepping stone looking up at her. 

(I am not affiliated with this podcast, but really impressed with the quality of their podcast and the info they are putting out there).  

@Shaidah K.  Neither the BC assessment document, nor either parties’ emotions, are tied to a current true market value. In fact, provincial property assessments can be significantly too high or too low. Values are determined in July of the previous year, and properties are rarely visited in person by provincial appraisers.

For this reason, provincial property assessments should never be solely relied upon as any sort of relevant indicator of true market value for the purposes of purchase, sale or financing.

Think of the assessed value instead as something akin to a weather forecast, spanning far larger and more diverse areas than the unique ecosystem that is your neighbourhood, your specific street, or your specific property. A weather forecast made the previous July, not the previous week. As this is when assessed values are locked in, a full six months prior to the notices being mailed out. 

You should gather professional opinions from real estate agent(s) and an appraiser – these are the people with their feet on the ground and their heads in the game.