March 20, 2017 4:51 pm
Updated: March 20, 2017 5:09 pm

Property tax hikes ‘rubbing salt in the wounds’: NB apartment owners

WATCH ABOVE: New Brunswick landlords are speaking out about increasing tax assessments after the province continued to raise rates. As Global’s Jeremy Keefe explains, Fredericton companies are worried about continuing their operations.


Increasing property taxes have further stirred the pot with the New Brunswick Apartment Owners Association who say they’ve been on the receiving end of an unfair tax deal for years.

READ MORE: Some New Brunswick residents shocked by large property tax assessment hikes

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Colpitts Developments chief financial officer Willy Scholten said he doesn’t know what the government is thinking after reviewing the company’s latest property bills.

“We’re seeing kind of across the board 11 per cent increase in assessments, some properties were 30 per cent more, some properties that were assessed [were] 40 per cent more,” Scholten explained. “It’s just too much.

“We’re looking for what is fair.”

Scholten’s frustration doesn’t stem solely from the rising costs that he estimates already make up around half of their expenses.

As the only province where landlords pay municipally and provincially, they have been lobbying against the “double tax” for over a decade.

“We’ve been fighting the property tax rate issue for 12 years,” he explained. “In the meantime, rubbing salt in the wounds, increasing assessments, is not helping the equation.”

READ MORE: NB realtors, government watchdog calling on property assessment changes

The province admitted that 2,400 assessments had been done in error this year.

Colpitts Developments is considering appealing the biggest tax jumps in hopes of keeping rental costs from jumping as well.

“We can’t give our tenants a 40 per cent increase obviously so we’re going to have to study this and see where everything sits,” Scholten said. “Tenants should really understand that it’s a hidden tax to them … it’s passed on to them through their rent. They should be screaming to the government right now.”

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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