The flood washed out an average of $208,870 in assessed value for each home damaged by Calgary’s rivers last June, according to the newly released 2014 assessment rolls.
(Original article here).
The city has begun mailing out annual assessment notices, and the numbers will confirm to homeowners in flood zones what they likely already knew: their homes are worth substantially less than they used to be.
Citywide, the typical home rose in value by more than six per cent, and is now worth $430,000, up from $410,000 last year.
That’s the highest level since 2008, the top boom year on Calgary assessment rolls.
“We have certainly seen a really strong increase, and certainly a resetting of some of those values back before some of the financial crisis happened,” said city assessor Nelson Karpa.
Many communities saw assessments rise more sharply than the six-per-cent median, particularly those in northeast Calgary and those hugging Nose Hill and Fish Creek parks.
Others were below the trend, especially in the Elbow River communities of Rideau Park, Roxboro and Elbow Park — all communities dominated by million-dolllar homes, and all extensively flooded.
Among the 289 single-family homes in Rideau-Roxboro, all but a dozen of them suffered value losses substantially beyond the city norm, new figures show.
Assessors normally don’t visit homes to do their calculations, but did go door-to-door and used aerial surveillance in flood zones.
What they found was 1,939 homes throughout Calgary directly affected by the waters. Combined, those homes shed $405 million of assessed value, compared to what the city believes their homes would have been worth if the flood hadn’t happened.
That amounts to an 0.2-per-cent reduction to the overall property values for Calgary homes. Council voted last month to use reserves to absorb the loss on property taxes that would cause.
Calgary assessments are used to determine property taxes.
Last year, the province offered to buy homes in the floodway based on 2013 assessed property values. Provincewide, 254 homeowners were offered buyouts — 50 in Calgary — but fewer than half expressed interest. Those who refuse buyouts will not qualify for disaster recovery program compensation when future floods strike.
Calgary assessors typically adjust their values based on real-estate sales, but there are only a few dozen to go by among flooded districts. Karpa said his assessment team will closely monitor the trends over this coming year, but examples in other cities show that riverside property tends to hold its value.
“Generally, speaking, the market has a pretty short memory,” said Karpa. Until last year, he assessed homes in Winnipeg — another city prone to flooding.