Altus Group Report Reveals Property Tax Burden a Continued Pressure Point for Businesses Across Canada During Challenging Pandemic Environment - Seite 2
“While the decrease in the overall average commercial-to-residential ratio is a positive step in the right direction, more action needs to be taken by governments in particular regions where the ratio has been steadily increasing,” said Terry Bishop, President of Property Tax Canada at Altus Group. “COVID-19 has accelerated the need to reduce the commercial-to-residential tax ratio given the significant added pressure currently facing businesses. Municipalities should recognize that bringing down the commercial-to-residential tax ratio will not only help provide some much-needed relief to struggling businesses during this time but will also make their cities more appealing to businesses going forward. This in turn will help foster job growth and lead to sustainable revenue for the city.”
Market-By-Market Trend Analysis
- Montreal’s commercial-to-residential tax ratio first rose above the average in 2008 and has been steadily climbing since. For the second consecutive year, Montreal has remained the city with the highest ratio, currently sitting at 4.11. The city’s ratio rose 4.45%, the largest ratio increase in the 2020 survey, to sit above 4.0 for the first time.
- Toronto continued its 16-year trend of decreasing its commercial-to-residential tax ratio with a -2.21% decline.
- Quebec City’s commercial-to-residential tax ratio moves from fourth to the third highest of all cities surveyed. In 2019, its ratio decreased by -3.75%, reversing a 15-year trend; however, in 2020, the ratio increased by 0.58%
- Halifax’s commercial-to-residential tax ratio has slowly been increasing over the past few years. It now sits above the average for the second consecutive year.
- Calgary saw the second largest ratio decrease of all 11 cities at -22.05%, ending a six-year trend of consecutive increases. The decrease in the ratio was a result of a significant increase in the residential rate (13.05%) and a significant decrease in the commercial tax rate (-11.87%).
- Ottawa’s commercial-to-residential tax ratio has been decreasing since 2017. For the eleventh consecutive year, it sits just below the average ratio at 2.45.
- Edmonton sits below the average with a commercial-to-residential tax ratio of 2.38 and has remained relatively stable over the last five years.
- Vancouver posted the largest increase in the residential tax rate (14.23%), the largest decrease in the commercial tax rate (-27.85%) and, as a result, the largest decrease in the commercial-to-residential tax ratio (-36.84%) of all 11 cities surveyed. This ratio decrease took Vancouver from the third highest ratio in 2019 to the fourth lowest in 2020. Additionally, for the 20 years prior to 2019, Vancouver’s ratio was above 4:1.
- Winnipeg continues to be the third lowest of the 11 cities with its commercial-to-residential ratio remaining relatively flat at 1.94.
- Regina remains quite stable posting a 1.74 commercial-to-residential tax ratio.
Saskatoon continues to have the lowest commercial-to-residential tax ratio at 1.72, a very slight increase from last year’s ratio of 1.71.