Setting Up EV Chargers in Apartments and Condos

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Setting Up EV Chargers in Apartments and Condos

Installing electric vehicle (EV) charging stations at multifamily residences like apartments and condos isn’t just a perk—it’s becoming a must-have for attracting and keeping residents who value sustainability. It also boosts the property’s appeal to investors. With the majority of EV charging happening at home, providing charging options can significantly enhance a property’s attractiveness. It’s becoming clear that EV charging facilities will soon transition from a luxury to a standard amenity in multifamily housing. Some local governments are even incorporating EV charging requirements into their construction codes to ensure new buildings are equipped for EVs. Property owners and managers need to be aware of the benefits and requirements of adding electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) to their offerings.

Surveying Residents for EV Charging Plans

Starting with resident feedback is key when planning EV charging facilities at a multifamily complex. This initial step helps you gauge both present and anticipated charging needs.

Consider conducting a survey among your residents to find out who already owns an EV or intends to buy one in the next five years. Although forecasting the exact number of EVs that will be present in the complex is challenging, this approach provides a general outlook on future EV ownership trends among your tenants.

Performing a Site Evaluation for EV Charging

Before installing Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE), a detailed site evaluation is essential. This step determines the current electrical setup and identifies any necessary upgrades to support EV chargers.

This evaluation is beneficial for your electrical contractor and facilities manager to estimate installation costs and plan the budget. To manage expenses, consider strategies like positioning chargers near the electrical supply or adopting power-sharing across multiple chargers through local load management. Additionally, exploring different mounting options can reduce site preparation costs.

For future scalability, it’s wise to prepare extra parking spaces with “make-ready” infrastructure. This means you might install the electrical groundwork for future chargers—like wiring and conduits—without putting in the actual charging stations immediately. This forward-thinking approach ensures that expanding your charging facilities later on will be more straightforward and cost-effective, as the initial infrastructure setup is already complete.

Exploring Financial Support for EV Charging Installation

In the U.S., there’s a range of financial incentives available from the federal government, state governments, and utility companies to support the installation of Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) in multifamily buildings.

One key incentive is the Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Tax Credit, overseen by the IRS. This program offers a tax credit covering 30% of the cost for setting up EV charging stations at commercial properties, including apartment and condo complexes, up to a cap of $100,000. Eligibility for this credit is restricted to installations in areas meeting certain economic criteria, such as a minimum poverty rate or a median family income below a specified threshold relative to the state average.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels Data Center lists federal programs and incentives for alternative fuel and technology projects, including those for EV charging stations.

State-level incentives can be found using tools like the Blink Charging’s Commercial Incentives tool, which allows you to search for funding opportunities based on your location and the specific Blink charger model.

Furthermore, the Alternative Fuels Data Center provides valuable resources and information about EV charging for multifamily housing, assisting in both the pursuit of funding and the effective implementation of charging solutions.

Choosing the Right Chargers for Multifamily Residences

For multifamily residences, where vehicles often remain parked overnight, Level 2 chargers are the optimal choice. These chargers are capable of fully charging an EV battery overnight using a 208/240 volt power source. Despite inquiries about Direct Current Fast Chargers (DCFC), such high-speed charging is usually overkill in multifamily settings where vehicles are parked for extended periods, making Level 2 chargers the more practical and efficient option for residents.

Wrapping Up

As electric vehicle (EV) ownership expands across the United States, the demand for EV charging stations at residential complexes is rising. By equipping your apartment complex or condominium with EV chargers, you not only attract environmentally conscious tenants but also contribute to building a sustainable community. Now is the perfect time to take the first step towards installation.

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