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Stock image: House and coins

Flooding can force fluctuation in property values and prices

Natural disasters like the flooding experienced along the Ottawa River this spring can have an effect on the real estate market and could have a longer-term impact on property assessments.

Of course, the properties at the most risk are waterfront locations or flood-prone areas, and buildings that have been—or could be damaged by floodwaters.

“That’s going to affect the value like crazy,” said Hawkesbury realtor Steven Levac.

He said it could scare buyers away.

However, Levac said none of his listings have been affected by flooding and he did not deal with any other flooded properties this spring.

“I’m busier now than I’ve ever been,” he said.

According to the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC), the agency in Ontario that assesses property values, recurring natural disasters like flooding can influence the value of a property.

“When assessing any property, MPAC relies on the market to indicate what influence a factor, such as recurring flooding, may have on a property’s value. MPAC does this through the ongoing study and analysis of the market including the investigation of sales transactions,” said MPAC spokesperson Paula Chung.

MPAC completes a province-wide assessment update every four years.  However, owners of properties where buildings were damaged to the point of being unusable can apply to their municipality to have the property taxes reduced, cancelled, or refunded.

Municipalities use the assessment information gathered by MPAC to set tax rates.


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James Morgan

James Morgan is a freelance contributor. He has worked for several print and broadcast media outlets. James loves the history, natural beauty, and people of eastern Ontario and western Quebec.

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