Property TaxProperty Tax Forms
Property Mill Rates
General Information on Property Assessment and Taxation in the General Taxation Area (GTA)
- What is property assessment?
- What is property taxation?
- Why do we have to pay property tax?
- How is property assessed?
- How is property tax calculated?
- What is the mill rate?
- Does a higher assessment mean I will have to pay more taxes?
- How do I know how much tax I have to pay?
- Can I question or complain about my property assessment?
- What is the General Taxation Area?
- How often are properties assessed in the General Taxation Area?
- How often can property taxes change?
- Do people who rent property have to pay property tax?
- Does the government of the NWT offer any relief to property owners?
- Where can I get more information?
What is property assessment?
Property assessment is the process used to assign a value to all property in the Northwest Territories. Consistent guidelines and techniques allow property assessors to ensure that similar kinds of property are assessed the same way and that assessed values for each property are fair and equitable.
Only land and improvements are assessed. Improvements include buildings, mobile units, pipelines, works and transmission lines. Personal property such as jewelry, cars, televisions and other personal possessions are not assessed.
What is property taxation?
A system of taxation that requires lessees, owners or occupiers of land and buildings to pay an amount of money based on the value of their land and buildings. Everyone who owns or occupies property, including individuals, businesses and industry pays property tax.
Why do we have to pay property tax?
Like most other taxes, property tax is imposed by government to generate money for a public purpose. It is compulsory and enforceable by law.
Paying property tax means helping to pay for services, the funding for which is provided by the GNWT or municipality such as:
- fire protection
- garbage pick-up
- law enforcement
- protective services
- general government services
How is property assessed?
A property assessor determines the value of each property by reviewing the land and the improvements on it. Assessors follow guidelines established by law in the Property assessment and Taxation Act and its Regulations. These guidelines ensure that all assessments in the NWT are fair and equitable.
The total assessed value of your property is based on the value of your land and of the improvements on your land. Land value in the GTA is based on land development costs. Land development costs include such things as the cost of building new roads and providing services such as water, sewer and electricity to this lot. GNWT regulations provide guidelines for determining land developments costs in each region of the NWT.
Improvements are assessed a value that is equal to two thirds of the depreciated replacement cost of a new improvement. Property assessors consider a number of factors when assessing including age, size, type of structure, quality of materials, design, and general condition and others.
How is property tax calculated?
Property tax is calculated by multiplying the assessed value by the mill rate.
What is the mill rate?
The mill rate is the rate at which annual tax is payable for each $1,000 of assessed value. The Minister of Finance sets the mill rate each year for each class of property in the General Taxation Area.
Does a higher assessment mean I will have to pay more taxes?
Not necessarily. In years when there is a general property assessment, the mill rate often goes down.
How do I know how much tax I have to pay?
Every year the government mails a tax notice to each assessed owner listed on the assessment roll.
Can I question or complain about my property assessment?
Yes. Your notice of assessment will explain how to do this.
What is the General Taxation Area?
It consists of the entire Northwest Territories except communities designated as cities, towns or villages, which are municipal taxation areas.
How often are properties assessed in the General Taxation Area?
- General Property Assessments must be carried out at least every nine years.
- Annual Property Assessments are carried out every year to assess buildings, which have been constructed, mobile units, which have been installed on a parcel of land, removed or destroyed, or any other improvements or alterations, which would affect the assessed value. Annual property assessments are carried out every year to assess any changes to the land, which affect its value. Between General Assessments, the value of the land and improvements for taxation purposes remains at the last assessed value.
How often can property taxes change?
They can change each year when the mill rate is set, or whenever there is a new assessment.
Do people who rent property have to pay property tax?
Renters pay their share of property taxes through the rent paid to their landlords. It is the landlord's responsibility to pay the tax.
Does the government of the NWT offer any relief to property owners?
The Territorial government has the Senior Citizens and Disabled Persons Property Tax Relief Act, which offer tax relief to property owners.
Where can I get more information?
If you own property in the NWT's General Taxation Area, or plan to own property in it, you may get more information about:
- Property Assessment: from Assessment Section, Department of Municipal and Community Affairs, P.O. Box 1320, Yellowknife, N.W.T, X1A 2L9, (867) 920-3023, or (867) 873-7563.
- Property Taxation: from Tax Administration Section, Department of Finance, P.O. Box 1320, Yellowknife, N.W.T, X1A 2L9, (867) 920-3470 or Toll-Free at 1-800-661-0820
- Tax Relief Programs: from Municipal Affairs Division, Department of Municipal and Community Affairs, P.O. Box 1320, Yellowknife, X1A 2L9, (867) 920-6303.
Region Phone Fax South Slave 867-872-7280 867-872-2114 Deh Cho 867-695-7226 867-695-2029 North Slave 867-392-6921 867-392-6312 North Slave-Yellowknife 867-920-8084 867-873-0622 Inuvik 867-777-7121 867-777-7352 Sahtu 867-587-2161 867-587-2044
- You may also review the Property Assessment and Taxation Act online at http://www.justice.gov.nt.ca. Click on "Legislation" and then search alphabetically for "Property Assessment and Taxation Act".
Government of the NWT
Treasury Division, Department of Finance
PO Box 1320
3rd Floor YK Centre
Yellowknife, NT X1A 2L9