Skip to main content

Are high property taxes weighing your business down?

  • Home
  • Advocacy
  • Are high property taxes weighing your business down?

With just under a month until the October 20 municipal election, we have released a new report highlighting just how poorly municipal governments have been treating local businesses like yours.

Our report presents an entirely new way to look at property tax inequality. We look at the percent of total municipal property taxes business owners paid versus what portion of property value they made up (otherwise known respectively as the “property tax share” and “assessment share” – check out the image below!).

In a fair system, the values should be roughly the same, where business owners pay taxes based on what they own…

… But this was far from the case in BC’s 20 largest cities.  In 2018, business owners paid for nearly 30% of all property taxes, but only accounted for roughly 12% of all properties! In other words, business owners are responsible for an unfair amount of property taxes.

We call the difference between the total property tax bill and total property value the “property tax fairness ratio” – in this case, a ratio of 2.4. It confirms what previous reports have said: business owners are getting the short end of the stick.

The table below shows a breakdown for each major municipality; if yours isn’t there, you can find it in the report.

We’re publicly calling out municipalities to get this right and pledge that they will set a clear, transparent timeline to make property tax fair in their municipality.

Add your voice to our call to action!

We have an online petition where you can let your municipality know you want them to focus on property tax fairness. The petition also has several other suggestions on how your municipality could better support you.

If you have any stories about property taxes weighing down your business, please send them to [email protected] or call 604-684-5325

We will continue to stand up against unfair policies by meeting with local politicians, conducting reports, and speaking out loudly to defend your business’ interests.