Property assessment is the process of assigning a dollar value to a property for taxation purposes. In Alberta property is taxed based on the ad valorem principle. Ad valorem means “according to value.” This means that the amount of tax paid is based on the value of the property.
Each year, property assessment is done based on the previous year's market values. The assessment is a major element in determining the amount of municipal and education tax each property owner pays. (Your 2016 Property Assessment is based on the 2015 real estate market conditions).
Market value assessments will vary by geographic location, building style, and size of property.
An appraisal is an estimate of value. Properties in Alberta are assessed using a method called mass appraisal. Mass appraisal is the process of valuing a group of properties as of a given date, using common data, mathematical models, and statistical tests. Mass appraisal techniques allow assessors to accurately value a large number of properties in a short period of time.
Data & Inspections
Before an assessment can be prepared, property data must be collected. Accurate and complete property records lead to more accurate assessed values. The more accurate the assessed values, the more equitable the entire assessment system is.
Detailed information about each property is gathered by making on-site visits or by corresponding with the owner of the property. Correspondence with a property owner usually occurs when the Assessor is requesting information about commercial, industrial, or rental properties. Information collected by the assessor in the assessment process is also available from other sources including Alberta Land Titles, real estate Multiple Listing Services, and financial institutions.
An inspection is conducted so that all characteristics of the property that affect the assessment are considered when the Assessor determines the property’s value. All newly constructed properties require an inspection. Likewise, existing properties need to be reviewed from time to time to ensure the information that is used to create the property’s assessment remains accurate.
Property assessment in Alberta is based on a combination of market value and regulated rates. Residential and some non-residential properties are assessed at market value. Farmland, machinery and equipment, and linear properties are assessed using regulated rates determined by the Government of Alberta.
An assessment notice is mailed to you each year, and provides you with the assessed value of your property. It also contains the name of property owner, mailing address of the owner, legal description, municipal taxes, school taxes, roll number (when making inquiries, please refer to this number), tax classification, final date to file a complaint, complaint filing fee and the annual payment deadline.
Property assessment, used in combination with a tax rate set each year by Lac Ste. Anne County Council, determines municipal property tax. In Lac Ste. Anne County, the assessment information is included on your Tax Notice. If any information on your notice is incorrect, please contact the Tax Department or the Assessment Department immediately.