‘We're afraid to do it’: N.B. family worried about home renovations after tax bill hike
Published Wednesday, April 19, 2017 7:32PM ADT
There is still no relief in sight for New Brunswick homeowners who received higher-than-normal property assessments this year.
One Hampton, N.B. family who saw their assessment double isn’t sure how to pay for their bill if they don’t get an appeal.
Last year, the Sooley family’s property was assessed at $132,400. This year, over $100,000 was added, with the new assessment coming in at $236,200.
“I don't know how the government expects us to pay that increase,” says Christene Sooley. “Something needs to be done.”
Christene lives with cerebral palsy and wants to make improvements to make the home more accessible. She says no renovations or major changes have been done in the past year.
She is worried what renovations would mean for next year's bill.
“We're afraid to do it,” she says. “We don't know what it's going to do to our taxes next year.”
The Sooleys received their tax bill at the beginning of March, and Christene brought an appeal into a Service New Brunswick location on March 6.
“I have got a few of those who have got their assessments back still aren’t happy with them,” says Progressive Conservative Leader Blaine Higgs. “I mean, they've got an assessment back that they say yes, dropped four or five thousand dollars, but they're feeling like their property's worth a whole lot less than that.”
Service New Brunswick says when making a reassessment, it relies on current property information on file, as well as any new information from the property owner and on-site visit if the owner requests one.
So far, Sooley says no one has been to her home, and no one has called to request a visit.
Service New Brunswick told CTV News that during a regular taxation year, the majority of appeals are processed by the fall of that year. So those who are waiting to hear about appeals could be waiting even longer.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Laura Brown