Ontario property assessment and tax updates: 2021
Stay up-to-date with deadlines, developments, property assessment and taxation management for your assets in Ontario.
- Property Income & Expense Return reports
- 2021 Ontario Reassessment Postponed Again
- Request for Reconsideration & Appeal Deadline
- Vacant Unit/Renovation Rebates
MPAC request for Property Income & Expense Return
Deadline: July 16, 2021
Owners of income producing properties will once again be receiving Property Income & Expense Return (PIER) requests from the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC). Notices will be issued beginning May 14th to owners of the following property types:
- Industrial Mall
- Golf Course
- Mobile Home Park
- Retirement/LTC Homes
- Mixed Use
MPAC is legally authorized to collect this data to prepare future assessments, and failure to comply does carry penalties (although these are very rarely enforced). The information gathered will directly or indirectly impact future property taxes.
Will COVID-19 impacts be included?
COVID-19 impacts should be reflected in the data, and MPAC’s request letters will provide instructions how to incorporate this information into its online reporting format. Alternatively, as MPAC will accept generated reports such as rent rolls and income/expense statements, owners should ensure that any changes to rental terms or additional costs not reflected in the reports are included with their submission.
Ontario Reassessment Postponed Again
Taxes to be based on 2016 Base Year Valuations through 2022
As announced in the Ontario budget on March 24, the reassessment scheduled for 2021, which was postponed and anticipated to occur for 2022, has been suspended again. Assessments will continue to be based on current value at January 1, 2016 until at least 2023.
The stated goal of the postponement is to provide taxpayers with continued stability. The province is also continuing a review of property assessment and taxation, with goals of enhancing accuracy and supporting a competitive business environment. This review is set to conclude this year, with results reported in the fall.
What does this mean?
- 2021 & 2022 Taxes are based on Pre-Pandemic Market Values
- Properties that have suffered extreme financial loss will continue to be taxed based on values determined at the peak of the market in 2016
- Ontario is officially the least responsive assessment system in all of Canada
- By the end of 2022, the assessed value will be 7 years out of date
- Other regions in Canada can produce Annual Assessments that address post-COVID values, but a reassessment in Ontario hasn’t taken place for 6 years
- Huge tax shifts are on the horizon
- The market is vastly different from January 2016
- When a reassessment finally takes place, many properties will experience unexpected substantial tax shifts
- Delays in reassessment do not create stability, they magnify the future instability of property tax
What can you do?
- Property owners facing declining values must file appeals to address inequities and inaccuracies
- This announcement comes after the deadline for filing Tax Rebate Applications but there is still time left before the March 31, 2021 Assessment Appeal deadline
Request for Reconsideration & Appeal Deadline
Deadline: March 31, 2021
If any portion of your property is classified as residential, farm, managed forest or conservation land, you must file a Request for Reconsideration (RfR)
Should I appeal my assessment?
A fair and accurate property assessment must, at a minimum, meet two important conditions:
First – the assessment must be equitable to the assessment of similar properties.
Second – the property must be assessed at its market value as of January 1, 2016.
If there is a conflict between the equitable and the market value of a property, the assessment should be reduced to its equitable value.
CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING:
• Has your assessment been reviewed/appealed recently?
• Is your assessment in line with similar properties?
• For owner-occupied properties, have non-assessable items, such as machinery, equipment, business value and
other intangible items been incorrectly included in your assessment?
NOTE: Any influence the COVID-19 pandemic may have on property values was not in effect on January 1, 2016. For that reason, RfRs that exclusively cite COVID-19 will not result in a value change for the 2021 property tax year.
Ontario Vacant Unit/Renovation Rebate Applications
Deadline: February 28, 2021
Ontario’s Vacant Unit Rebate program allowed commercial and industrial property owners to apply for a partial rebate of
taxes paid for vacant space. Although many municipalities have eliminated this program, it is still available in some areas.
In addition, tax rebates are still available in many cases for properties undergoing renovation, which includes space being
prepared for a future tenant.
Do I qualify?
Altus Group has prepared the attached schedule “A” showing which municipalities are still participating in the Vacant Unit
Rebate Program, and has outlined the next steps (below) for properties eligible for Vacant Unit Rebates, and those where only
the Renovation Credit is available.
VACANT UNIT REBATES
Where the municipality has a Vacant Unit Rebate Program:
- Using section 1 & 2 of schedule “B” (excel version here) please identify units that were either vacant or subject to renovation during 2020.
- Return to Altus Group by February 9, 2021.
- Altus Group will review and submit either a vacancy application or a renovation application depending on the municipal
Where the municipality has eliminated the Vacant Unit Rebate Program:
Need help with your PIER report?
If you have questions reach out to your Altus Group representative or one of our contacts below.
We can ensure that the information you provide satisfies MPAC’s requirements and reflects all losses in revenue and increased expenses experienced over the past year.