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Real Estate


Do you have good reason to believe that the municipal assessment of your home is too high? Note that it is possible to contest the property property assessment review and request a review, subject to certain conditions.

With the meteoric rise in home values ​​in recent months, many homeowners risk seeing their municipal and school tax bills increase. We told you about it in one of our previous articles on property assessment in Montreal.

Indeed, a higher municipal assessment also means that you will have more tax to pay. When this increase is significant and it is not justified, it is quite normal to want to ask for a review. However, this is not a decision to be taken lightly.

What is municipal property assessment?

First, let’s briefly recall what land value consists of.

Every 3 years, the cities or municipal organizations of Kent are responsible for redoing a property assessment roll. And this, for all the buildings on their territory.

The goal? Establish their “real value”, the most probable price that would be paid to buy the building in a free market and open to competition. This value is then used to determine the amount of taxes that owners will have to pay in the coming years.

It should be noted that this evaluation is made as a block of comparable dwellings and that it does not consider the specific characteristics of each property. Therefore, it may happen that the municipal value of your house is inadequate.

Property assessment too high: what can be done?

The assessment of the property value of your residence is much too high compared to reality. It is not enough to disagree with the established value to challenge it! You must prove that it is incorrect.

In other words, you will have to provide proof that it would have been impossible to sell your property at the assessed cost under market conditions 18 months before the entry into force of the assessment roll. For instance, this could be the case if:

The building had major defects.

External factors affected the value of the building (noise, flooding, pollution, etc.).

In what situations can a review be request?

According to the law, four situations give a citizen the right to request a review of the assessment:

  • The filing of the assessment roll, followed by the sending of a notice of assessment to the owner.
  • The modification of the role carried out by certificate, followed by the dispatch of a notice of modification.
  • The notice of automatic correction sent by the home or commercial real estate appraiser to the owner to inform him of a planned correction.
  • The modification of the roll not carried out by the assessor, despite an event which should have led to such modification.

Specific deadlines are set for each of these situations. You can get more details directly on the website of the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing.

Challenging the property assessment: is it worth it?

Before taking steps to contest the municipal value of your property, ask yourself if this decision is worth it:

  • What reduction could accept?
  • Will this have a significant impact on your tax bills?
  • What are the costs associates with your request (professional fees, file processing fees, etc.)?
  • Is it profitable?

By asking yourself the right questions, you will be able to more easily judge whether your situation needs to be reassess or whether it is better to leave things as they are.

Revision of the property value: the steps to follow

Want to move forward with a review request? First, be aware that certain formalities must compile with for your application to be admissible by the organization responsible for the assessment or any other body to which you will apply.

You must meet the following conditions:

  • The request must be make on the form design for this purpose.
  • It must be deposit at the place determine by the organization responsible or be send registers mail.
  • The reasons and arguments invoke for the revision must briefly explain. It should be note here that the cost of the taxes to be pays does not constitute a reasonable ground for contestation.
  • The request must be submit within the set deadlines.
  • It must be accompany by the amount of money applicable to the review if the body responsible has a regulation to that effect.

Request an administrative review

The first authority to which you must address your request for review will be the municipal body responsible for the assessment. Depending on where you live, this may be the city itself or the MRC (regional county municipality).

Barring exceptions, you must submit your application no later than April 30 following the entry into force of the assessment roll. Your file will then be examine by a municipal assessor.

Depending on the case, the expert could decide to maintain the value entered or to modify it. He will provide you with a written response no later than September 1 of the same year.

If the appraiser accepts the review, you can enter into an agreement to change the value entered on the roll. This must be in writing and must indicate the effective date.

You are not satisfied with the decision render by your municipality?

  • The evaluator’s modification proposal does not suit you.
  • The appraiser chose not to change the value of the role.
  • The September 1 deadline has expire without an agreement having been reach

You must then send a written request to the Secretariat of the Administrative Tribunal of Kent, Washington. The request for review must invoke the same grounds as the previous one. It must be submitt within 60 days of the municipal assessor’s response or within 30 days of the indicate deadline if no response has been provide.

The Tribunal’s decision will be render after hearing the parties.

Appeal your case PROPERTY ASSESSMENT REVIEW to the Court of Kent

The third and last possible recourse is to entrust your file to the Court of Kent. With the permission of a judge, you can appeal your case within 30 days of the decision.

At this stage, it is strongly recommend to be accompanied by an expert or to be represent by a lawyer specializing in real estate law.

The chartered appraiser: an indispensable ally

The expertise of a certified appraiser is a valuable aid in this type of process that offers you nationwide property and appraisal services.

Depending on the case, the expert could decide to maintain the value entered or to modify it. He will provide you with a written response no later than September 1 of the same year.

If the appraiser accepts the review, you can enter into an agreement to change the value entered on the roll. This must be in writing and must indicate the effective date.

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