With the new year comes budget talks from municipal council officials and regional district directors.
This means, of course, they are starting to consider all the factors that will impact property tax rates for 2023.
On the heels of property assessment notices, which came out earlier this month, the province has announced the homeowner grant threshold has been set at $2.13M for the 2023 tax year, “ensuring 92 per cent of residential properties” are covered by the grant that lowers the amount of property taxes people pay on their principal residence.
For the immediate region, the basic grant amount remains unchanged from last year; as much as $770, and up to $1,045 for homeowners 65 years or older, veterans, and for people who have a disability or live with a relative who has a disability.
To ease the burden on municipalities, the province took over full homeowner grant administration in 2021.
Homeowner grants provided additional relief to almost half a million seniors across B.C. last year, and approximately 13,000 persons with a disability. The province also says that more than one million applications to the program were approved.
The fastest way to apply for the grant is via the B.C. government website. Search “B.C. homeowner grant application” or visit: www2.gov.bc.ca.
Last year, the majority of applications were made securely online or through interactive voice recognition.
Another bonus is that once filed, property owners can check their application status online. Homeowners with more complex situations can get help over the phone at 1.800.663.7867 or at a ServiceBC Centre.
The best time to apply for the grant is in May after property owners have received both their BC Assessment notice and their municipal property tax notice. Assessment roll and jurisdiction numbers are needed to apply.
Homeowners may also be eligible for the property tax deferment program. This low-interest program is for homeowners who meet specific criteria, including: supporting a dependent child; 55 or older during the current year; a surviving spouse of any age; and a person with disabilities.