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Wednesday 1 February 2017
A big change in property values looks set to impact upon Waipa District Council’s rates.
Next week staff will recommend an average 2017/18 rates rise of two per cent compared to the 3.1 per cent originally projected in the 10-Year Plan. The saving is largely from lower debt levels, lower depreciation costs, increased fees from growth and the use of operating surpluses from previous years.
But the lower than anticipated rates increase will be skewed by independent property valuations completed late last year.
The valuations from Quotable Value saw the capital value of Waipa properties increase by an average of 23.1 per cent. Residential property saw the biggest jump with Cambridge and Leamington house values increasing by an average of nearly 45 per cent. The capital value of the average Waipa house is now $462,000.
Group manager business support Ken Morris said only properties with valuations significantly more or less than the average valuation increase of 23.1 per cent could see big rates changes.
More than 3,500 properties – largely commercial, industrial and rural – are likely to see rates go down. But just over 1,000 high value residential properties, residential properties with multiple dwellings, or properties that have been extensively developed over the past year could face rates rises of more than 10 per cent. Property owners would receive a letter from the Council explaining the increase, Morris said.
“The amount of money we need to run the district hasn’t changed but the revaluations have, in some cases, changed what share of the district’s total rates bill each property pays,” he said.
“The impact is a mixed bag. Generally, people are very happy to hear their property is worth more. But they aren’t necessarily happy to see that increased capital value reflected in their rates bill.”
At next Tuesday’s Strategic Planning and Policy Committee meeting elected members will discuss how to reduce the impact of property revaluations on rates. Staff have recommended that $570,000 of a $891,000 cash surplus be used to reduce the impact.
Quotable Value revalued Waipa properties late last year, assessing the value of both land and buildings. Of more than 21,000 properties only 210 property owners objected to their revaluations. Most who objected were concerned their property valuation had been set too low.
Proposed rates for 2017/18 will be available on the Council’s website in March.
For more information, contact: Natalie Palmer 027 807 3174