Question: Is the real estate data used in my Property Assessment available to me?
Answer: Sales data used in the determination of estimates of market value for property assessments is purchased through Alberta Land Titles Registry. As such this data is not the property of Kneehill County. Therefore Kneehill County cannot sell or distribute this data. Property owners however can contact Land Titles or the "Registry" affiliate for specific transaction information. Property owners can also contact local Realtors for property listings.
Question: How are market value Property Assessments completed?
Answer: There are three approaches to determine market value. The estimate of market value uses one or a combination of these approaches in the assessment process. The Sales Comparison approach compares the sales of similar properties with positive and/or negative adjustments the differences in properties to determine the market value of a property that has not sold. The Income Approach is primarily used on properties that are usually traded on their income producing potential. The income generated by the property is capitalized using an appropriate rate to calculate an estimate of the market value for that property. The Cost Approach uses an estimate of the replacement cost for any buildings less an allowance for depreciation, plus an estimate of the market value of the land as though vacant to determine the total property value. In Alberta assessments are prepared using Mass Appraisal Techniques; this is simply the grouping of similar properties and using the same methodologies and adjustments on all properties in the group.
Question: Why is market value used in my assessment?
Answer: Market value is the current standard the Alberta Government implemented for the province wide assessment of real estate properties. The Municipal Government Act stipulates that property taxes are to be levied in relation to the market value of the real estate. The Municipal Government Act defines "market value" as the amount that a property might be expected to realize if it is sold on the open market by a willing seller to a willing buyer.
Question: What if I disagree with my Property Assessment?
Answer: First discuss the assessment with the assessor. If after this discussion you still feel the assessment is in error then you can file a complaint to the Assessment Review Board. The complaint must be filed by the filing date printed on your combined assessment and taxation notice. The complaint must be in writing, must outline the reasons for the complaint and must be accompanied with the appropriate filing fee.
Question: What is the Seniors Education Property Tax Rebate?
Answer: The Seniors Education Property Tax Rebate is a program administered by the Alberta Seniors and Community Supports to provide an annual rebate to assist senior homeowners with the payment of the education portion of their property tax. Seniors remain responsible for the payment of the total tax bill to the municipality. Seniors can then get a rebate of the increase in the education tax only over the previous year's education tax on their residence, or beginning in the year after they reach the age of 65. Questions, inquires, including your eligibility and how to apply for this rebate program should be directed to the Alberta Seniors Information Line at 1-800-642-3853 (in Edmonton 780-427-7876).
Question: How has my property assessment changed from the previous year's assessment?
Answer: Assessments are prepared annually to reflect changes in the property as well as changes in the in real estate market conditions. Assessments are ether on Provincially Regulated Rates adjusted annually, such as Farmland or Machinery and Equipment: or the Market Value Standard, where sales are reviewed annually and reflected in the property assessed value. In Kneehill County a minimum of three years of sales are reviewed annually. The valuation date for assessments in the Province of Alberta is July 1st of the year prior to the taxation year.
Question: How can I make payments of taxation balances owing to the municipality?
Answer: Kneehill County accepts cash, cheque, post dated cheque, interact and online through your bank payments for property taxes. The County also has a Tax Installment Payment Plan (TIPP) with this program a predetermined monthly withdrawal is made from your bank account the first of every month. No credit cards are accepted by the County. Many of the above can also be used for County utility payments. For further information contact the Kneehill County Office at 1-866-443-5541, locally at 403-443-5541
Question: What is the water service tax on my assessment notice?
Answer: The water service tax is a special tax authorized by Council to raise revenue to help cover the cost of the water works being constructed within the Kneehill County Water Service Area.
Question: What happens when the assessor inspects my property?
Answer: When the assessor visits a property with buildings he/she will first check at the door to speak with the owner/occupant. The owner/occupant can help the assessor perform their task by answering questions the assessor may have of the property. The assessor will then verify assessment details of existing buildings on the assessment record and will collect details necessary to prepare an assessment on buildings not on the assessment record. These details include the measurement of the building, exterior finish and type of construction. If the assessor is unable to access the interior of the building because no one is home or he/she is otherwise denied access the assessment is prepared using the assessor's knowledge of similar properties to complete the messing data. An assessment must be prepared per the Act and Regulations for every property in the Municipality.
Question: How often is my property inspected by the assessor?
Answer: The Municipal assessor is required by the Act and Regulations to do regular re-inspections of all properties. Due to the size of the municipality and staffing within the Assessment Department it is not possible to completely re-inspect every property every year. This is not really necessary as most properties change very little year to year. A re-inspection cycle has been set up to cover the municipality on a three to five year cycle. Properties having new construction, demolition or use changes will be inspected outside of the re-inspection cycle. Also properties that have sold may be inspected outside the re-inspection cycle especially if the sale appears to be abnormal compared to the rest of the market.
Question: How is my property tax calculated?
Answer: The municipal Council each year approves a budget for the municipality to cover normal operations of the municipality as well as any special projects such as a new road. The assessor prepares the municipal assessment each year. The budget is then divided by the taxable assessment to determine the mill or tax rate. This tax rate is then applied to the individual property assessments to determine the property tax bill. The municipal council has little or no control over things such as the school tax which is include on your tax bill as a separate line entry.
Question: What is linear assessment?
Answer: Linear assessment is the assessment of power lines, cable system, cellular systems, oil and gas wells as well as oil and gas pipelines. These assessments are prepared by the Province of Alberta for all municipalities. The taxes on these assessments are paid by the companies that own or operate these systems. The surface equipment found at the oil or gas well such as a separator, tank and the building that house them are assessed by the municipal assessor. The tax for this surface equipment is also taxed to the owner or operator of the well.
Three Hills , AB
Toll Free : 1-866-443-5541
Ph: (403) 443-5541
Fax: (403) 443-5115
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