Fewer properties are on this year’s tax sale list for the City of Red Deer.
Roxane Preedin, the city’s controller for property taxation, said 25 properties are two or more years in arrears paying municipal taxes, compared to 40 properties on last year’s tax sale list.
This doesn’t necessarily indicate the worst of the recession is over.
Preedin said many things come into play when property owners fall behind in taxes. Some problems are financial, but there are usually various other issues that pertain to each individual case that city workers try to resolve, she added.
This year’s list includes 23 residential properties and two business properties. The owners have until April 22 to pay the back taxes they owe, or the city can sell these properties to recoup the municipal taxes that are due.
Preedin said the vast majority of the taxes are paid before the sale. Only three properties of the 40 on last year’s list had to be put on the market.
Perhaps due to the slow economy, none of them sold, so the city is still owed this tax money.
“There’s no fire sale,” said Preedin, who explained the city has to follow strict provincial rules, including setting a reserve price that’s at fair market value for the sale.
If properties are sold and back taxes recouped by the city, any additional profits go to the property owner, said Preedin.
On Tuesday, Red Deer city councillors will review the recommended reserve bids for the 25 properties on the 2020 tax sale list.
They include one $465,000 property in Inglewood, two $355,000 properties in Clearview and Inglewood, a $350,000 property in Johnstone Park and a $330,000 property in the downtown.