How Properties are Assessed
To ensure all Banff property owners pay their fair share of municipal and provincial education property taxes, the Town uses the property assessment process established by the provincial government.
Your current property assessment notice indicates the Town’s estimate of your property’s market value—the amount it would have sold for in the open market—on July 1 of the previous year. And, it is adjusted for any changes in physical condition recorded up to December 31. Provincial legislation establishes this process and these dates.
Property Assessments have been mailed to all property owners in Banff.
If you have not received your notice, call our office at 403.762.1230. You need to review your assessment in case there are errors - you can appeal your assessment notice, but you cannot appeal your tax notice.
View A Guide to Property Assessment and Taxation in Alberta (PDF) for more information. You can also visit the Ministry of Municipal Affairs website.
Residential Property Assessment
Every year, the Town’s contracted property assessor looks at the market conditions of Banff’s real estate market, as of July 1 of the previous year. Then, they review and analyze the data received throughout the year from different sources to establish most probable value your property would have sold for on the open market on July 1.
Town assessors use similar criteria that real estate agents use when pricing a home for sale. For example:
- Style of home (for examples, bungalow or bi-level)
- Size of lot
- Size of home
- Building condition
- Age of home
- Basement or lower level finish
- Garage (for example, size, detached or attached)
- Type of roof
- Fireplaces, air conditioning or other special features
- Your neighbourhood and location (for example: proximity to main parkland, river, commercial development and high traffic routes)
- Additions and associated buildings
Additional information used by the Town to help estimate your property’s value include:
- Records of property sales in Banff of similar properties in similar areas
- Alberta Land Title office records
- Town records (for example, permit and construction information)
To ensure assessed values are fair and accurate, they are reviewed at 3 levels:
- The Town’s internal checks and balances
- The Alberta government's annual assessment audit process
- Individual property owners' review of their notice
All properties in Banff are assessed every year. Property assessment notices have been mailed to property owners. Your current assessment is based upon the market value of your property on July 1 of the previous year.
When you receive your notice...
- Review the details on your assessment notice.
- Check what makes up your property’s assessment value and compare your property’s assessed value with similar properties in your neighbourhood using the Assessment Roll. (The Assessment Roll is a list of all properties along with their current assessed value as determined annually by the assessor.)
- If you have questions or concerns with your assessment, contact the Town for one-on-one support by calling 403.762.1230. Our property assessment team can answer most assessment-related questions, and may revise your assessment without needing to go to a formal appeal (also called a complaint).
- If you disagree with your property's assessment, and you can’t resolve the issue with the Town’s assessor, you can file a complaint with the independent Assessment Review Board by the deadline stated on your latest property assessment notice.
- In 2021, the deadline to file an appeal (complaint) is April 19, 2021.
Your property assessment determines your share of the total municipal taxes in Banff, set by Town Council when they finalize the Budget. Your tax bill is sent in May, after the Town receives the invoice for the amount of education taxes the Town must collect for the province.
You can appeal your property assessment, but you cannot appeal your tax notice which is sent in May.
Commercial Property Assessment
Commercial property is assessed using the income approach. First, the Town of Banff appraiser calculates a Net Operating Income for the property. This is calculated by determining the potential gross annual income of a property, then subtracting a typical vacancy allowance, management fees and structural maintenance costs.
The Net Operating Income is then divided by a Capitalization Rate, and the result is the market value assessment for the property.
How Assessments Inform Property Tax
Taxes are calculated by multiplying the assessed value of a property by the tax rate, set by Council, usually in April of each year.
Town Council sets the annual budget. This determines the total tax levy that needs to be collected to pay for the services and programs approved in the final budget. Your property assessment determines your share of the total tax levy, based on your property's value as a portion of the total value of all properties in Banff, and how much your property changed in value compared to the average market value change in Banff.
How to File a Complaint
Complaints must be filed on the appeal date indicated on your assessment notice. See the Assessment Complaints page for more information about the complaint process.