June 14th, 2024

Real estate market influences City property assessments

By Lethbridge Herald on January 12, 2023.

The City of Lethbridge mailed notices to all city residential and commercial property owners on Jan. 4. The City says it has seen a 7.65 per cent increase in property values. Herald file photo

Al Beeber – LETHBRIDGE HERALD – abeeber@lethbridgeherald.com

Residents opening their city property assessments who see an unexpected increase aren’t alone.

The City of Lethbridge mailed notices to all city residential and commercial property owners on Jan. 4.

And residents may see a jump thanks to a hot real estate market last year.

Larry Laverty, assessment and taxation manager for the City of Lethbridge, said Thursday the city has seen a 7.65 per cent increase in property values.

In comparison, Calgary residents – according to a report out of that city – can expect to see a 12 per cent hike in the value of their properties when they get their assessments.

“We saw a 7.65 per cent increase in residential property values this year. That is based on the sales that have occurred in the municipality and it’s a value as of July 1, 2022. So the market was really strong at that point – it’s actually still very strong and prices have definitely increased dramatically over the last couple of years,” said Laverty.

If a property value went up around the average rate of 7.65 per cent, “you will probably see somewhere around a 5.1 per cent tax increase,” said Laverty. That increase is what council approved annually for the next four years after approving its 2023-26 operating budget last fall.

Before budget deliberations began, city treasurer Darrell Mathews said tax increases per single family residence are based on an average market of value of $285,800.

Laverty said Thursday residences valued around the average can expect to pay close to that 5.1 per cent.

“It’s not uncommon,” he said of higher assessments.

“Other cities, too, have seen massive increases in assessment. The last couple of years have been very strong,” he said of the housing market.

“And the sales are there to support the values,” Laverty added.

When determining assessments, the City looks at all sales in the municipality. That information is used to assess properties, the main characteristics being location, size, and condition and market value can vary based on that.

Improvements to a property can come into play. If a person has an older house and upgrades were done then the house is worth more than it would have been without the upgrades, said Laverty. The construction of a garage can also increase a home’s value.

According to the Re/Max 2023 housing market outlook, prices nationally are expected to fall by 3.3 per cent in 2023 compared to 2022 with about 60 per cent of Canada’s markets returning to a balanced condition. However, prices are expected to increase in some places including Calgary (seven per cent) and Edmonton (three per cent).

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Nothing shocking about the increase, which should have been a reduction in the London Road region! As I mentioned in a previous comment, it will be interesting to see if this City of Lethbridge assessor agrees with my realtor’s assessment after my house was recently put on the market to leave this city due to the crime and lack of action.
My home is in London Road, and in order to keep criminals out, we had to fortify the property. We also couldn’t use the parks in the area because the same criminals were using them as their bathrooms, bedrooms, and drug dens. We even had to come up with a plan for my adolescent children to use the buses and stay away from the downtown bus station due to filth, garbage and criminals. Also, they had to go to the westside library because the downtown library is full of addicts, prostitutes.
We will leave this leadership catastrophe, where junkies dominate and police turn a blind eye, as soon as my kids finish this semester of school. Freeloaders won’t be supported by our property taxes!


Over half of this council and many in administration still believe harm reduction works, and don’t recognize that the issues on our streets on unique to other communities. Most of our issues are from indigenous criminals who were kicked off their reserves for their behaviors and criminality and we allow them to continue those behaviors on our streets with impunity.
When people are elected to be responsible with our money we pay in property taxes and fail, they should be removed from office and replaced by those who listen to their electorate!


That is fine, all us Johnny Q publics have deep pockets . . . right!!?? Do we really need those city bike lanes? Just think how much more we can give the addicts/homeless to blow if we take that $40 million and give it to them!
Maybe we should buy some nice Parkside Drive homes and use them to house the addicts and homeless so they have a nice view of the park as they slowly kill themselves with all the drugs they are doing!
I am sorry, but I am tired of all this and see no compensation for our downtown neighbourhoods being turned into the Vancouver DTES, except higher property taxes and now inflated property values that will cause us to pay more property taxes, while we cannot enjoy many of our amenities we paid for.
In October I requested from the Mayor when in a meeting with him, how much of the city taxpayers dollars are going into the addiction/homeless issues. My rough calculations were well over $10 million and I wanted to be accurate when stating those facts.
The Mayor and Council didn’t know so I waited for the response for several weeks before emailing the Mayor and was told to call 311, but before I had emailed him I made a request through the City Clerks office, Information Manager and was waiting for his response. No response or acknowledgement they received the request was sent to me . . . but being patient, I waited a couple more weeks before asking for a confirmation they had at least recevied the request. After 2 more weeks, I called 311 who then had someone contact me, who again contacted the Information Manager.
Now I originally requested the information in October, never got a response so when I contacted 311 last week . . . well you can do the math how long it was . . . about 12 weeks . . . no response . . . nothing done.
So, yesterday I received an email with FOIP forms to fill out, and fees which need to be paid to search the information and the costs will be at least $225 in ‘initial’ fees for me to pay, if no other charges are added. NOTE: I made a FOIP request to the feds for information on the SCS . . . cost $5.
Forgive me, but would you not think that a sitting City Council who has been writing cheques, authorizing funding and increasing budgets should know just how much of the citizen’s tax dollars are going to issues created by the homeless/addiction problems in our city that has destroyed our reputation internationally? Should they not know? Why does a private citizen have to pay out of their own pocket to get that information? But I guess we are all flush with cash!
Before decisions are made, should not all the facts be presented? Or are they like Trudeau, who writes cheques as if money just falls from the skies!
I live downtown in a condo complex and see the Park N Ride terminal and the businesses over run daily by these addicts/homeless who leave garbage everywhere and use business doorways as their toilets.
The parks in the area all had addicts/homeless doing drugs and defecating and urinating in them with the track at the Civic Center and old YMCA property taken over by the addicts for encampments since spring, so I could not use the track. I haven’t used the library your years because it is disgusting.
Even the YWCA, which is managed by some of the old SCS staff in the last 2 years has seen an illegal injection site in that building where 3 people died within weeks and even a drug lab was busted on the second floor. How much money has the city funded the YWCA in the last 4 years? Is that not supposed to be a safe place for women who have been abused? What is abuse? Is enabling addicts to continue to kill themselves slowly, destroying their bodies, brains and families?
Are we just going to sit back and allow our city to be turned into a Vancouver DTES?
I am tired of getting getting stonewalled by government when requesting information on how taxpayer’s money is being spent! I now have zero faith in this Council and will be expressing that in a future City Council meeting and for all of you who have had enough . . . when will you stand up for your rights and make your concerns known!?

Last edited 1 year ago by ewingbt

If the Mayor and Council approved the Blood tribe to oversee the Northside Resouce center (Hotel) BIG GDM MISTAKE the Blood tribe ran it before and was kicked out, it is said there are 75% indig’ most have taken up residence for over two years well that will change to 100% no whites. The question are the City taxpayers paying the operating cost the Bloods should of course our free money council will probably will,
It is odd the past two City Managers could present 2% operating budget;s, the new City Manager, the new Council maybe in 2024 the 13 new 1.5 million each electric buses plus infrastructure costs also the new 8 hybrid police cars for $80,000.each There is more on administrative costs and curbside organic boondoggle on costs.


Actually $80,000 for a police vehicle isn’t at much more than what other ones are and the operating costs will ‘are supposed to be’ cheaper.
Although I have been hopeful this plan would succeed I have to ask myself why we have a resource center and shelter here instead of on their community!
Will we see racism in their new operations at the shelter and resource center? From what I have seen, the leadership who operate or are high level management are reasonable. Time will tell!
I don’t have much faith left right now in the administration or Council. It appears protests will be the only way for change and I have applied to express my concerns to Council at their January 24th meeting . . . BUT . . . I haven’t heard back from them. More stonewalling?? I am going to be very FRANK when I present to Council!
I am not going away and they better realize it . . . it was suggested I move . . . why should I move because no one will deal with the criminals?