By Tara Henley 
BELLEVILLE – Landlords in Quinte region are “concerned and panicked” at the thought of raising rents to cover property-tax increases, according to the association that represents them.
Ontario’s Municipal Property Assessment Corporation  recently mailed notices of properties’ assessed value using a new valuation method, the Quinte  Region Landlords Association  said in a press release Monday. The change was meant to modernize multi-residential property assessments, but instead is leaving landlords confused, the association says.
While the new valuation method was supported by the rental-housing industry and is considered an improvement from the previous method, “any time you change a system, people are going to get concerned and panicked,” association president Robert Gentile  said.
But rent increases may not be necessary, because not all rental-unit owners will be affected the same, he said.
“It’s too early to tell how most rental property owners will be affected,” Gentile said. “Whenever there are changes to an assessment, the value usually increases and the property taxes go up as a result.”
“MPAC is really just catching up to the marketplace with these changes. The valuation method is now a more accurate reflection of the market.”
The previous valuation process compared gross income from similar rental properties in the region, whereas the new method focuses on the properties’ net operating income .
The association is bringing in MPAC officials to hold an information seminar  on the changes that will include how to understand and apply for assessment reconsideration. The seminar is scheduled for this coming Monday at 10 a.m. at the Quinte Sports and Wellness Centre  and will be in the Minor Sports Meeting Room.