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Thousands of homeowners warned about spike in property values

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VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – It is no secret that real estate values just keep on rising in Metro Vancouver, but an unusually high number of homeowners are getting special letters this week telling them their property assessments have skyrocketed over the last year.

BC Assessment has sent out close to 22,000 early notifications, warning of increases well above the average in certain Greater Vancouver neighbourhoods.

“The recently finalized 2016 assessments are indicating significant increases from 2015,” says Assessor Jason Grant. “Increases of 15-25 per cent will be typical for single-family homes in Vancouver, the North Shore, Burnaby, Tri-Cities, New Westminster, Richmond and Surrey. Typical strata residential increases will be in the five to 10 per cent range.”

There are examples of homes on Vancouver’s East Side jumping from $993,00 in the 2015 assessment roll to $1,267,000 in the 2016 assessment — an increase of 28 per cent.

Houses in the Buckingham neighbourhood of Burnaby have seen assessed values increase as much as 27 per cent, with homes on Vancouver’s West Side jumping up to 23 per cent.

Parts or West and North Vancouver, Coquitlam and Richmond have also seen spikes in home values of 20 percent or more.

BC Assessment says it has only seen the numbers move this dramatically a handful of times since 1980.

“Across the province, we have just issued about 37,000 early notification letters, with almost two thirds of those going to Greater Vancouver property owners. Early notification letters are mailed to property owners who can expect an increase of at least 15 per cent above the average increase in their local taxing jurisdiction,” explains Grant.

“We want to ensure impacted property owners are aware of the significant increases and we welcome them to contact us if they have any questions or concerns.”

The 2016 assessments for all properties will be sent out the first week of the New Year.