General information on Property Assessment and Taxation in the General Taxation Area (GTA):
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. For more about: Property Assessment and Taxation.
2. 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.
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
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.
6. 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.
2. 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.
14. 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.