Non-residential property assessments

Non-residential property assessment

These assessments pertain to any property not used as a residence and are valued as a non-residential property*.

*Non-residential assessment class,​ as described in the City of Calgary Charter, means property that is not classed by the assessor as farm land, machinery and equipment or residential.

Non-residential property types


Non-residential vacant land

We assess non-residential vacant land by comparing one property to other comparable sold properties; this is called the sales comparison approach. These properties have primarily industrial or commercial land uses as of December 31 the previous year.

Influencing the value of the property


The property’s location influences its value. Properties in similar market areas are grouped together when being evaluated.

Parcel Size

The parcel size directly influences the associated land value of the property. This is typically measured in square feet, square metres or acres.

Land Use

The land use bylaw determines what can be built on a parcel of land. This directly impacts the value of non-residential land.


To capture the unique characteristics of each parcel, we apply various adjustments to account for nearby influences. These adjustments may add or subtract value from the base land rate. Examples of these influences include (but are not limited to):

  • environmental concerns
  • servicing
  • topography

Recreational properties

Recreational properties include, but are not limited to:

  • parks, green spaces, playgrounds and reserves
  • cultural buildings (e.g.theatres, museums, libraries)
  • nature exhibits (e.g. planetariums and zoos)
  • indoor and outdoor sport facilities
  • exhibition grounds (e.g.Stampede grounds)

Recreational properties are typically valued using the cost approach to value. The Marshall and Swift Cost Estimator, which is widely used by the appraisal industry in general to provide construction cost estimates, is used to value the improvements and the sales comparison approach is used to develop the land rates.

Hotel properties

Assessed values for hotel properties are predicated on the income approach to value. Each year The City of Calgary requests income and expense data from all hotel and motel operations. The information requested includes a summary of all sources of revenue as well as various expense items. The income and expense data requested from owners of hotel properties from the last three years prior to the valuation date are used in deriving the assessed value.

The data reported from each property is stabilized using a weighting of:

  • 50 percent for the most recent year
  • 30 percent for the preceding year
  • 20 percent for the last year

A net income for each property is determined based on the stabilized income subject to normalization of typical expenses. The net income is adjusted to remove the business interest of the hotel creating a net income to real estate. The net income to real estate is capitalized to determine a final assessed value.

Influencing the value of the property

Hotel performance

Occupancy rates, revenue and expenses over the last three years directly impact the assessed value.


Hotel properties located in similar locations are compared together (e.g. Hotels in the downtown and Beltline areas are not compared with hotels located in suburban areas.).


Properties are assessed by these types:

Full service hotels

  • variety of guest unit styles
  • meeting rooms
  • spacious public areas
  • variety of facilities (e.g. restaurants, lounges, fitness centres, pools, spas, business centres, shops, parking)

Limited service hotels

  • multi-storey buildings
  • interior guest unit entrances
  • fewer guest units than full service hotels
  • limited public areas
  • limited facilities


  • one to three-storey building
  • interior or exterior guest unit entrances
  • limited guest unit styles
  • limited public areas
  • limited facilities


The Calgary International Airport is a large, diverse and complex parcel located in Calgary's northeast quadrant.

Three approaches to value are used for airport properties based on ownership. Each ownership type is assessed using the following approaches.


​Ownership type​ ​Value approaches
Ownership type: ​Calgary Airport Authority Property* Value approaches: ​Sales, income and cost
Ownership type: ​Land tenants* Value approaches: ​Sales, income and cost
Ownership type: ​Terminal tenants Value approaches: ​​Income

*Properties located within the secured perimeter are valued using the cost approach as these buildings are not accessible to the general public and are unable to trade on the open market.

Vacant land is valued using the sales comparison approach. Industrial, office and retail portions of the property are typically valued using the income approach.

Factors affecting the income valuation of the tenants include:

  • location,
  • size,
  • class
  • type of space.

Note: Class is determined using a function of the property's age, quality, condition, location, tenant mix and parking availability.

Golf courses

Golf courses are typically valued using the cost approach. The main factors in golf course valuations are:

  • land
  • course development (e.g. slope rating, length of course, number of sand traps)
  • physical improvements (e.g. club house, maintenance shops).

The Marshall and Swift Cost Estimator is used to value the improvements and added to the cost of the land. Golf course location is not a factor in the valuation.

Institutional properties

Institutional properties include, but are not limited to:

  • schools
  • government services buildings (e.g. fire stations, libraries, public works)
  • churches and religious structures

Institutional properties are typically valued using the cost approach to value. The Marshall and Swift Cost Estimator, which is widely used by the appraisal industry in general to provide construction cost estimates, is used to value the improvements and the sales comparison approach is used to develop the land rates.

Farmland properties

Farmland assessments are regulated by the Municipal Government Act and are completed annually using the valuation date of July 1 of the previous year. The valuation standard for farm land assessments is agricultural use value. Land that has qualified for farm status will be assessed at a regulated rate and will not be assessed at market value.

How land qualifies for farm status

Under Alberta Regulation 203/2017 (Matters Relating to Assessment and Taxation Regulation) of the Municipal Government Act, a "farming operation” means the raising, production and sale of agricultural products and includes:

  • horticulture, aviculture, apiculture and aquaculture,
  • the raising, production and sale of (A) horses, cattle, bison, sheep, swine, goats or other livestock, (B) fur-bearing animals raised in captivity, (C) domestic cervids within the meaning of the Domestic Cervid Industry Regulation (AR 188/2014), or (D) domestic camelids,
  • the planting, growing and sale of sod and
  • an operation on a parcel of land for which a woodland management plan has been approved by the Woodlot Association of Alberta or a forester registered under Regulated Forestry Profession Act for the production of timber primarily marketed as whole logs, seed cones or Christmas trees, but does not include any operation or activity on land that has been stripped for the purposes of, or in a manner that leaves the land more suitable for, future development.

Apply for farmland status

In order to apply for farmland status you must complete and submit a farmland Assessment Request for Information (ARFI). This form can be acquired by calling 403-268-2888 and asking for a blank copy of the Farmland ARFI. Land previously assessed as farmland will receive an ARFI for farmland properties each year. This ARFI must be completed and returned within the specified time frame. Land not previously assessed as farm land may qualify as farm land for the next taxation year if the owner completes an ARFI. ARFIs are available by contacting Assessment.

Submission of an ARFI does not guarantee farm land status. For more information, contact Assessment at 403-268-2888.

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