Services > Finance > Property Tax

Property Tax

How are taxes calculated?
The formula for calculating taxes on property is tax rate times assessed value.

The tax rate is expressed as a dollar amount on every $1,000 of assessed value. If the tax rate for residential property is 4, this means that taxes of $4 are charged on every $1,000 of assessed value. Property valued at $100,000 would thus be charged taxes of $400 (100 x $4).

Homes on Middleton Mountain overlooking Kalamalka Lake
Homes on Middleton Mountain overlooking Kalamalka Lake.

The British Columbia Assessment Authority determines the assessed value of property for tax purposes. The Authority is established under provincial legislation and is independent of the municipality. The District is not involved in determining assessed values. For more information on your assessment contact the BC Assessment office at 250-545-2171.

Taxation on property is the primary source of municipal revenue. The provincial Community Charter sets out in detail the regulations for property taxation. The amount of money to be raised through taxation is set by Council through the budget process. Other aspects of the taxation process, such as the due date for taxes and the penalty on late taxes, are regulated by the Community Charter.

Council does not have the authority to adjust the taxes on individual properties. The taxes are set by the tax rate which applies to that class of property. For instance, if the tax rate for residential property is 4, then all residential properties must be charged this rate.

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What is included on my annual Tax Notice?

Your annual Tax Notice includes ALL property taxes - those imposed by the District and those imposed by other governing jurisdictions.  The District collects taxes on behalf of others as follows:

School Taxes These are remitted to the Provincial Government
Hospital These are remitted to the Hospital District
R.D.N.O. These are remitted to the Regional District
Multiuse Facility These are remitted to the Regional District
Theatre These are remitted to the Regional District
BC Assessment These are the B.C. Assessment Authority taxes
M.F.A. These are the Municipal Finance Authority taxes
OK Library These are taxes imposed by the Library Board.

These tax levies are not set by the District of Coldstream but are collected by the District on behalf of those governing jurisdictions. This is more efficient and economical than each of these tax authorities sending individual tax notices. Coldstream Council sets the rates for District taxes only (General and Debt).

The annual Tax Notice has the Home Owner Grant Application form attached.  This form must be completed EACH YEAR to claim the grant, if eligible.

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When are taxes due?

Property taxes cover the fiscal year - January 1 to December 31 - and are due the first business day in July. Under the Community Charter, the municipality must charge a 10% penalty on late taxes, which is also applicable to the unclaimed Home Owner Grant portion of your taxes.  Until the Home Owner Grant is claimed, that portion of the balance of your tax account is considered taxes outstanding.

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How do I pay my property taxes?

  • By cash, cheque, money order or debit card at the District Office.  
  • Over the counter at any financial institution in Canada, via telephone or internet banking.  Check with your financial institution. 
  •  By your mortgage company on your behalf (applicable if your mortgage number is printed on the property tax notice).
  •  By postdated cheque.  Send the cheque with your completed and signed Home Owner Grant application to the District Office.
  • Through the Property Tax Prepayment Program (prepay the following year’s property taxes in installments by automatic monthly withdrawal from your bank account).

Home Owner Grants, if eligible, must be claimed and delivered to the District prior to the due date to avoid penalty additions.  Leave plenty of time for mail delivery, as postmarks will NOT be considered as date of payment.

eHOG - Claim your Home Owner Grant Online

The online link to claim the 2013 Home Owner Grant is no longer available for this year.
The eHOG link for claiming the 2014 Home Owner Grant will be set up in May 2014.

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What is the Home Owner Grant? Am I eligible to claim it?

The Home Owner Grant is a grant provided by the British Columbia Government to owners who occupy their residential property. The grant must be claimed each year. The application form is attached to the bottom and is on the back of your Tax Notice.  The grant cannot be claimed on vacant land or when the property is registered to a company.

It is the responsibility of the home owner to claim the Home Owner Grant every year. You can claim your grant by:

  • Mail to the District of Coldstream
  • Placing it in the District Office drop box
  • In person at the District office
  • Online at www.districtofcoldstream.ca

The Basic Home Owner Grant is up to $570, with the minimum property tax payable of $350 (see additional grant information below for seniors and persons with permanent physical disabilities, and for the low-income supplement program).  To be eligible, you must:

  • Be a permanent resident of British Columbia.  This means you (1) have all or most of your personal belongings in BC, (2) have (or are eligible for) BC medical insurance, (3) have (or are eligible for) a BC driver’s licence, (4) are able to register vehicles in BC, (5) file a BC income tax return, and (6) are entitled to vote in BC;
  • Be living in the house at the time you claim the grant; and
  • Be shown on the title as a registered owner.

One grant is allowed for each property, and you can claim the grant only once each year.  When there are joint owners or multiple owners on title, any ONE owner on the title can claim the grant.  If your mortgage company is paying your taxes, you must still complete the grant application and ensure it is received by the District by the tax due date.  We recommend you not claim your grant at the bank, as your grant application may not be accepted.

Seniors and persons with permanent physical disabilities are eligible for an additional grant of up to $275, with the minimum tax payable of $100.  If you are 65 or will be turning 65 during the current year, complete section 2 of the Home Owner Grant application.  Please ensure you enter the date of your birth.  If you are a person with disabilities, or are the spouse or relative of a person with disabilities and that person lives with you, you may be eligible for the disability grant.  The disability must be permanent and must require extensive physical assistance or costly modifications to the home to be eligible.  Your doctor must complete the appropriate form to certify the disability.  These forms are available at the District Office.

For 2009, the Home Owner Grant will be reduced on higher-valued properties by $5 for each $1,000 of assessed value over $1,050,000. The basic grant is eliminated on homes assessed at $1,164,000 or more, and the additional grant is eliminated on homes of $1,219,000 or more.

The Low-Income Grant Supplement is provided to low-income homeowners where the value of their residence would traditionally mean loss of the Home Owner Grant.  This special grant is available only through the Ministry of Small Business and Revenue.  Please contact Home Owner Grant Administration by phone at 1-800-355-2700, or check the Provincial Home Owner Grant website
NOTE: 
 Please apply before July 2, 2009, to avoid the penalty on the HOG amount.

If the registered owner of the property is recently deceased, a relative may claim the grant for that year only, but only if they were living with the deceased at the time of death and are living in the home when they claim the grant.

New owners, whose names are not yet on the property tax notice, must produce a copy of their certificate of title when claiming the Home Owner Grant.

For more information, contact the Finance Department at the Municipal Hall at 250-545-5304 or go to the Ministry of Small Business and Revenue website at www.rev.gov.bc.ca/hog.

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Property Tax Prepayment Program
The District of Coldstream offers a plan for you to pre-pay the following year’s property taxes in instalments by automatic monthly withdrawal from your bank account.

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Deferred Property Tax Program

Taxes can be deferred by a registered owner age 55 or over; a surviving spouse, or a qualifying handicapped person. Also, new this year is the Financial Hardship Property Tax Deferment Program. An application form (available at the Municipal Hall) must be completed. When sold, the taxes plus a below-prime rate of interest are subtracted from the proceeds. The Home Owner Grant must still be completed and claimed each year. For deferment information, please see the Ministry website at www.rev.gov.bc.ca or contact the Finance Department at the Municipal Hall at 250-545-5304.

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Permissive Property Tax Exemptions – Not-for-Profit Organizations
The District recognizes that the work performed by volunteer groups and organizations enhances the social, spiritual, cultural, educational and physical well-being of the community, and supports those groups through reductions in property taxation.

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For more information, contact the Finance Department at 250-545-5304.

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