Last updated June 6, 2023
Municipalities across Ontario are set up to have budgets completed and approved by April 30 of each year. The province also completes the education levy, which is included in the municipal tax rate, by this time. Tax rates for 2023 are published after this date and will be updated here once available.
Clarington has passed Oshawa for the highest property tax rate in Durham this year. Also, Markham now has the lowest property tax rate in the province. Up until 2022, Toronto had that distinction.
If you see a 2023 update for a municipality that isn't showing yet on this page, kindly send me an email with a link to the municipality web page at firstname.lastname@example.org
These are the cities with the lowest municipal tax rates for homes in Ontario. This list is updated as cities publish their rates for the year.
|Municipal Property Tax Rates 2022||https://johnowen.realtor/|
|Property Class and Percentage||Property Assessed Value and Tax|
|Ajax||1.1164430||1.9512660||2.2769920||2.8295270||6,699||8,932||11,164||905-683-4550 x 361|
|------------ GTA --------------|
|------ OUTSIDE GTA -----|
|Quinte West (Trenton)||1.4272850||2.7015700||2.8404880||4.3669020||8,564||11,418||14,273||613-392-2841x4902|
|© John Owen, 2022|
The city with the highest property tax rate in Ontario for 2022 was Windsor, with a rate of 1.85376%!
The city with the highest property tax rate in the GTA for 2022 was Oshawa, with a rate of 1.325625%.
For 2023, Clarington has the highest property tax rate in the GTA published thus far at 1.223207%, and for Ontario, Belleville is currently highest at 1.751746% (the rates will almost certainly be higher for Windsor, once published).
Markham has the lowest property tax rate in the province of Ontario thus far for 2023 at 0.662708%.
The rates listed in some of the communities that are located outside of the GTA might help to placate those who think they have the highest tax rates. The grass isn't always greener!
If you look at the average property in each city, the difference in assessed values for similar properties actually makes our area comparable in municipal taxes paid to other GTA cities.
First, we need to understand that our municipal governments have to provide similar services, regardless of how much our properties are worth. In virtually all budgets, the number one expense is for the salaries of public employees - police, fire, EMS, municipal workers, road maintenance, etc. Those people make roughly the same amount from one community to the next.
In those cities with higher average property values, they can apply a lower tax rate to come up with a similar amount of revenue. Of course, there will be differences based on population size and other factors, but you get the idea.
Without delving too much into the process, they establish a budget, and determine from that how much revenue needs to come from property taxes. They then adjust what is called the millage (or mill) rate of each property type to come up with the amount needed to reach the revenue target.
Changes to the assessment value and rate each year are designed to be revenue-neutral. This means that when your MPAC assessment increases, it will be multiplied by a lower tax rate to come up with the same amount of tax. Of course, this assumes that you haven't made any material change to your property, and also that the municipality hasn't increased it's budget. Budgets do increase, for inflation and changes in service levels.
For example, the City of Toronto has one of the lowest rates in the province. That may sound wonderful, but when you take into account that it also has one of the highest property assessment averages, the actual amount of municipal tax you pay there isn't much different than in other places. For example, the average assessment for a single family home in 2016 was $770,000 in Toronto, and in Oshawa, it was $356,000.
- Toronto $770,000 times 0.688% or $5,298
- Oshawa $356,000 times 1.561% or $5,557
Assessments are completed every 4 years by the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC). An increase to the assessment value of a home is phased in over a 4 year period, whereas a decrease is applied immediately when calculating taxes.
Also, when you buy a property in Toronto, you must also pay a Municipal Land Transfer Tax on top of the Provincial Land Transfer Tax. This is a particularly heavy burden for this market, as it adds more to the closing costs that need to be saved for along with the down payment, making it even more difficult in one of the most expensive areas for real estate in Canada.
Using the information from the previous table, and average property assessment values for 2016 (MPAC statistics), let's see how the average single family home fares:
Of course, these figures only represent averages. On higher-end properties, the rates will have a bigger impact. The rates are also different for different property types, and there are many variations of classes in commercial and industrial properties. If you have a question regarding another type or another municipality in the area, you can contact me and I would be happy to explain further.
Property Tax Calculator - Durham Region
Why are Property Tax Rates so High in Oshawa?