What is the Best EV Charging Solution for Your Condo Building?
As electric vehicles become more popular, many condo and apartment buildings are considering installing EV charging infrastructure to meet the needs of their residents. However, determining the best EV charging solution for a condo building can be a complex process, as there are a variety of factors to consider.
If you are a property manager or condo board director, we've outlined six steps to help you determine the best EV charging solution for your condo or apartment building.
In this guide:
- Assess the demand for EV charging
- Determine the feasibility and cost of installing infrastructure
- Consider different charging options
- Allocate cost
- Create clear guidelines for the use of the charging stations
- Apply for government rebates
Assess the demand for EV charging in your condo building
The first step to determining the best EV charging solution for a condo building is to assess the demand for EV charging among residents. Finding out if there is a significant demand in your building to install EV chargers will lead to a substantial reduction in costs as fixed costs can be spread among condo owners. A few options to asses demand are surveys, focus groups, or informal conversations with residents. Be sure to talk to everyone in the building.
It is important to determine how many residents own EVs, how often they need to charge their EVs, and whether they would be willing to pay for the convenience of charging at home. If your tenants own electric vehicles, then most likely it's been a hassle for them to charge their cars away from home. They need to look for an EV charger, wait for it to charge, and then drive home. By having an EV charger at home, they would be able to relax in the comfort of their own home while their car is being charged in the parking lot.
Determine the feasibility and cost of installing EV charging infrastructure
Once the demand for EV charging has been assessed, the next step is to determine if the job can be done with the infrastructure in place or if the cost of installing new infrastructure is feasible.
While new buildings going up in Ontario are required to meet the EV charging needs of their owners and residents, most existing condo buildings were not built to accommodate EV chargers. Any retrofit in an older building involves working with a qualified electrician or engineer to assess the electrical capacity of the building and determine the best charging solution.
Factors to consider include:
- the size of the building
- the available space for charging stations; and
- the cost of any necessary electrical upgrades
Finding the right professionals to work with is key to making sure this process is done the right way. If you want to get started and want to understand more about what needs to be done to install an EV charger, you can contact an EV charger installer to help you map out the process.
Consider different charging options
There are a few different options to consider for EV chargers in your condo building. Usually, this is a matter of choosing between centralized charging stations or individual charging stations
Central charging stations (or communal charging stations) are installed in a central location, such as a parking garage, and can be used by multiple residents. Individual charging stations are installed in each unit, allowing residents to charge their EVs in the privacy of their own parking space. A combination of both options allows residents who do not have the ability to install their own charging stations to use the central ones, while those who prefer the convenience of charging at home can install their own.
Allocating the costs of an EV charger network
One important consideration when installing EV charging infrastructure in a condo building is how the costs are to be allocated. Some costs involved are fixed and others are variable, and depend on the number of units that EV chargers are being installed in. For more information, read up on Condo EV Charger Costs. In some cases, condo corporations will take on some of the fixed costs, and in other cases, they will fully distribute those costs. Discussions with your EV charger installers can help determine the best path forward.
Create clear guidelines for the use of the charging stations
Once the charging infrastructure has been installed, it is important to create clear guidelines for the use of the charging stations. This can include usage fees, reservation systems, and time limits. If this is in each parking spot, then each tenant would have to worry about each individual charger. They would be in charge of taking care of regular maintenance, electricity costs, and functionality. It is also important to clearly communicate these guidelines to residents to ensure that the charging stations are used efficiently.
making sure each tenant has the knowledge needed to take care of their own EV charger is important to reduce your headache as a property manager or condo board member.
Rebates for EV Charging Stations
There are government incentives to encourage the adoption of EVs and the installation of charging infrastructure, specifically for condo and multi-residential units. An excellent first step is to see if you qualify for an Ontario EV charger rebate.
How to Move Forward With an EV Charging Solution
Determining the best EV charging solution for a condo building is a complex process that requires careful consideration of a variety of factors. A professional EV charging with significant experience will be in the best position to help you maximize the benefit to your owners and residents while minimizing your upfront and longer-term costs.
Questions about EV Charging?
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