Condominiums and townhouse properties drove gains in residential real estate values in the Tri-Cities last year, according to figures released this week from BC Assessment.
The numbers show a snapshot of the market on July 1, 2017, with the average homeowner seeing a rise in property values over the previous year of 9.8% in Coquitlam, 11.35% in Port Coquitlam and 8.88% in Port Moody. The increase in Anmore was 13.19% while Belcarra’s average rose 10.22%.
But the value of detached homes did not see the gains in 2017 that have been typical in recent years, especially when compared to condominium and townhouse properties.
In Coquitlam, for example, the average detached real estate value rose 5.4% compared to 26.8% for strata properties. The trend is similar in PoCo, where attached properties’ prices rose 25.4%, compared to 12% for detached properties, while in Port Moody data is only available for strata properties, which rose 23.9%.
“I would say the single-family residential market this year is more stable,” said Paul Borgo, the acting assessor with BC Assessment. “The condominium market, the stratified market has carried on with another strong year. That has been a lot more robust.”
Assessments can vary depending on the neighbourhood, Borgo said.
For example, a detached home in central Coquitlam built in the 1980s saw an average price increase from $1,325,000 to $1,504,000 (13%) while a detached home on Westwood Plateau valued at $1,400,000 in the 2017 figures saw no increase in value.
Meanwhile, a highrise condo unit in the City Centre neighbourhood of Coquitlam built in 2009 increased 14% from $478,000 to $546,000 and a townhouse unit in Maillardville built in 1989 rose 22% from $477,900 to $581,200.
“An average is just an average,” Borgo said. “Not every neighbourhood behaves the same way in a marketplace in a particular year.”
PoCo saw some of the largest gains in the Tri-Cities, according to the assessment figures.
For example, a downtown PoCo lowrise apartment unit built in 1995 jumped 28% from $291,000 to $373,000 while a townhouse in Citadel built in 1994 rose 22% from $698,000 to $850,000.
In Port Moody, a highrise unit in the Newport Village area built in 2005 rose from $493,000 to $552,000 (12%) while a lowrise built in 1996 in the same neighbourhood increased from $524,000 to $604,000 (15%).
The new BC Assessment values will be used by municipalities to determine a homeowner’s property tax rate.
But Borgo said an increase in real estate value does not necessarily mean a corresponding increase in taxes. For example, if a homeowner’s assessed property value rose in line with other properties in their area, Borgo said the rate increase would be in line with the rest of the neighbourhood.
“If every home increased by the same amount, your taxes are not likely to change much,” Borgo said.
Still, 67,000 notices were sent out to homeowners across the province last month warning them that their assessments would be rising at rates above the provincial average. According to BC Assessment, some people are seeing increases of 30% or more.
There is an appeal process for homeowners who believe their property has been wrongly appraised, although Borgo encouraged residents to look at their assessment and sales activity in their neighbourhood on the BC Assessment website before requesting a review.
THE TOP 15 RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY VALUES IN THE TRI-CITIES
Address Taxable Value
185 Turtlehead Rd., Belcarra $7,716,000
4593 Belcarra Bay Rd., Belcarra $6,968,000
2300 Sunnyside Rd., Anmore $6,374,000
3299 Black Bear Way, Anmore $5,993,000
3053 Anmore Creek Way, Anmore $5,844,000
4535 Belcarra Bay Rd., Belcarra $5,532,000
3495 Senkler Rd., Belcarra $5,487,000
5225 Coombe Lane, Belcarra $5,268,000
1450 Crystal Creek Dr., Anmore $5,257,000
2610 Sunnyside Rd., Anmore $5,206,000
5269 Coombe Lane, Belcarra $5,171,000
1256 Alderside Rd., Port Moody $5,112,000
1122 Alderside Rd., Port Moody $5,074,000
5063 Whiskey Cove Lane, Belcarra $4,988,000
1982 North Charlotte Rd., Anmore $4,893,000