Understanding the property assessment roll better
Who does what?
• In accordance with the Act Respecting Municipal Taxation, the MRC des Laurentides assessment department compiles and maintains the property assessment roll for the 20 towns and municipalities within its territory.
• Although the MRC is responsible for compiling the property assessment, it should be noted that the towns and municipalities are responsible for taxation. Once the rolls have been filed, it is the responsibility of each municipality to conduct its own budgetary exercise and set its own taxation rate depending on the services and infrastructure that it offers.
What is the purpose of the property assessment?
Essentially, the property assessment serves to uphold, and especially improve, the quality of life in each of our municipalities. The assessment allows municipalities to maintain the quality of services offered to their citizens.
Understanding your assessment
The assessment roll:
- is an inventory of all properties on the territory of each local municipality
- indicates the real market value of properties, depending on the different neighbourhood units, on a specific date
- reflects the conditions prevailing on the real estate market.
PLEASE BEAR IN MIND that the market conditions in your neighbourhood may affect your property assessment. An analysis of all real estate transactions is carried out for the purpose of making adjustments and determining market trends.
When several properties in a particular municipal sector sell for a higher amount than they were assessed at, we assume that this market condition applies to all properties in the same neighbourhood unit, even if no improvement has been made to the building or the land.
Why do two buildings of a similar appearance have different assessments?
Appearances can be deceiving
Your building and your neighbour’s building may look similar, but various factors such as the quality and complexity of construction, a finished basement, the age of the construction, a garage, outside installations, extensions (such as porches, balconies, etc.), land area or topography may affect the assessment. Two properties that are identical in appearance may have different property assessments if they are in different sectors of the municipality or if different market forces prevail.
Why do we perform property inspections?
We perform property inspections to comply with the regulations set out by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs, Regions and Land Occupancy and the Act respecting Municipal Taxation. The assessor is assisted by a technical inspector. It is the technical inspector’s main role to inspect properties and survey their physical features.
Assessment methods used to determine the value
- The cost method estimates the value of a property by establishing its depreciated construction cost;
- The comparative method analyzes the sale of properties with similar features;
- The revenue method is used in the case of properties that generate income, specifically apartment blocks and several types of non-residential buildings.
It is the technical inspector’s role to record all details that are taken into consideration when assessing the real value of the property. The technical inspector establishes both the quality and complexity of each of the blocks in the property file. The inspector takes measurements, makes a sketch of the construction, notes the materials used for internal and external finishes, takes photographs and records the different features of the site.
Some examples of features that may affect property values:
• indoor finishes: rooves, walls and floors
• structural measurements
• number of bathrooms
• quality of kitchen cabinets
• basement (furnished or unfurnished)
• outbuildings, including sheds and garages
• improvements, including pools, asphalted courtyards, heating installations
• particular features of the sector
For certain industrial, commercial or residential buildings, the technical inspector also records details relating to the building revenue/expenses.
Reasons for an inspection
A property may be subject to an inspection for three reasons:
- Renovation work has been carried out. All works, apart from regular maintenance, require a permit issued by the municipality.
- The property has been sold: the assessor must verify that the description of the property on file is still accurate at the time it is sold.
- According to the terms of the Act respecting Municipal Taxation, the assessment department is obliged to verify the accuracy of its data every nine years (see section 36.1 of the Act).
This is why it is important to have access to your property: the technical inspector must be able to inspect and examine your building and ask you relevant questions to complete your file. When the inspector visits your property, he/she will present identification.
If you are not present, the inspector will leave a card asking you to get in contact.
Outcome of inspection
1. If there have been no changes to the property since the last inspection, your assessment will remain the same.
2. If only minor changes have been made to the property, these will not affect the applicable assessment roll. However, in the following three-year period, any details recorded by the technical inspector will be taken into account by the assessor to determine the new value of the building.
3. If significant modifications have been made to the property, a revised assessment notice is sent to the owner to notify him/her of the revised value and the date this value comes into effect. You will then receive an invoice from your local municipality’s tax department.
Overview of property assessment rolls
The overview of property assessment rolls provides information, including the number of units, apartments, industries, businesses, etc. assessed. It also contains details about the municipality’s property wealth, which is calculated by adding up the total value of the taxable and non-taxable buildings. MRC des Laurentides has more than 59,000 units to be assessed and a property wealth in excess of 11 billion dollars.
How to obtain an overview of a property assessment roll
To obtain an overview of a property assessment roll, select your municipality.
Download the Ministry of Municipal Affairs, Regions and Land Occupancy’s document for citizens – Your property assessment
Revised assessment: first collect the required information
• If you do not agree with your assessment, first collect the required information to avoid unnecessary effort and time. When a new property assessment roll is filed, individual or group information sessions may be organized in different municipalities where experts of the MRC assessment department will be on hand to answer your questions.
• Before submitting an appeal, be sure to do your homework! An application for review must be adequately justified and you must submit all relevant evidence to support your case. It is important not to compare the increase in value with your previous assessment or the difference compared to your neighbours’ assessments. Rather ask: does the assessment reflect the value of my property on the reference date, i.e. July 1, 2015 for the three-year period? If you reply yes, it will be very difficult to submit an appeal to the administrative court. Remember that the burden of proof rests with you.
• Adhere to the timelines: an application for review must be submitted before May 1 following application of the new assessment roll (e.g. for the three-year period, you have until April 30 to submit your application)
• Furthermore, if you request an administrative review after having received a revised assessment notice or a correction by the MRC assessor’s office, you must submit your request before the 61st day following the date the revised assessment notice was dispatched.
To submit an application for review, please:
• complete an application for review form, which is available in all municipal service centres, or print this application for review form
• transmit your completed application for review form together with your payment (as determined in MRC des Laurentides regulation no. 295-2014 and applicable to the assessment unit the request is addressed to):
Amount quoted in roll Rates
Less than or equal to $500,000 $75
Greater than $500,000 and less than or equal to $2,000,000 $300
Greater than $2,000,000 and less than or equal to $5,000,000 $500
Greater than $5,000,000 $1,000
To consult the relevant regulation, click here.
Drop off your application for review form at one of the locations stated below or send it by registered mail.
Municipalities and drop-off locations
Processing times for applications for review
• When a new roll is filed: the Act respecting Municipal Taxation (section 138.3) specifies that processing applications for review can continue until September 1 of the year of the new roll. Before August 15 of the year following application of the roll, the municipal agency responsible for the assessment (MRC des Laurentides) may postpone the due date from September 1 to November 1 or, if the local municipality agrees, to any date until April 1 of the following year.
• Following a change in the roll: The Act respecting Municipal Taxation requires a maximum period of four months from the date your application for review form is submitted to process the application.
• If you and the assessor agree on the changes to be made to the assessment roll, you will have a period of 30 days after the assessor’s response is sent to establish a written agreement with the assessor regarding these changes.
• If you and the assessor do not agree on the changes to be made to the assessment roll, you will have a period of 60 days after the assessor’s response is sent to lodge an appeal to the Quebec Administrative Court for the items contained in your application for review form.
Building: Denotes both the land plot and the buildings.
Assessment unit: Denotes the land plot and the buildings belonging to the same owner of neighbouring properties, used for the same purpose and assignable only as a unit.
The municipal agency responsible for the assessment is MRC des Laurentides.
Neighbourhood unit: Unit comprising the largest possible number of assessment units located close to each other, with homogenous features and located in a similar environment.
Attic: Floor with a minimum height clearance of 1.4 metres.