If you own your home and property, getting an EV charging station is as simple as buying one and installing it. If you live in a condo or an apartment building, the situation is more complex. But even if your building hasn’t installed chargers, and has no plan to, providing information to the owner and/or the Homeowner’s Association can help your cause.
If you live in a Right to Charge state, the HOA would have a hard time legally refusing you. States with Right to Charge laws include California, Oregon, Colorado, Florida, and Ontario CA. If you don’t live in one of these states, getting EVSE can be more challenging, and you will have to take responsibility for educating the owners and other residents, so they do not think they are paying for your electricity.
Steps you can follow to get a “yes” out of your building:
1—DON'T JUST PLUG YOUR CAR INTO AN OUTLET in your building’s parking garage, even if you own your apartment and the parking spot. According to Green Reports, one driver who decided to plug in without mentioning it to the building got socked with $200 added to her rent from the owner, who was less than pleased.
The charges for your fueling will go directly to the building. When they see a bigger electric bill, they will know something is wrong. That starts the negotiation off on a bad foot. ASK PERMISSION first to get an official charging unit(s) in the building.
2—SURVEY YOUR NEIGHBORS. Ask around your building who has an EV and who would buy an EV if they could charge on the property. It may be more people than you think. Coming to the owner, board, or HOA with a group will help them see this an amenity the entire building wants.
3— WHAT SCALE IS THE PROJECT ON? This is a very important question, and having the survey results will help. When other residents see the charger in your parking spot, they’re going to want their own, and your facility’s owners are well aware of this. It would be virtually impossible for them to allow one resident to have a charger, but not another.
If you’re the only one who wants one, it’s reasonable that it be installed in your spot, if others want one, it would ultimately be less trouble to install one or more in the garage in general, which is a large project and costly for the building, both things the building may not be interested in.
Gather information first about how the charger will increase the property value, allow the owners to charge higher rent, and gives the owners an additional income stream.
4—DETERMINE IF THE BUILDING CAN HANDLE ADDITIONAL ELECTRICITY. If their grid is older, they may need more power. It is not unreasonable for all those who said they will use the charger to chip in for a new electrical panel.
Or choose Blink’s network. Blink’s “Smart” load management capability, ideal for multifamily properties, allows for load sharing, thereby minimizing EV charging station installation costs
5— WHO IS PAYING FOR THE CHARGER? Your building’s biggest concern will be the cost. If the charger is in your spot and for your use only, make it clear you’re paying for your own charger. Contact Blink or find us on Amazon, for an inexpensive Level 1 charger, usually available for under $100. The building can charge you a flat fee for electricity or add it to your electric bill.
If the charger(s) is for the entire building, Blink can partner with the owners/HOA to bring Level 2 chargers to your building. Blink’s business plan is different from any other manufacturer. We create, supply, install, and maintain the chargers instead of leaving the guesswork to our customers. We enable owners to control hours of operation, remotely control chargers, and most importantly, to charge users for the electricity they consume.
6— WHO IS PAYING FOR THE ELECTRICITY? Is the other half of the cost question. It is illegal to install a charger for an entire condo or apartment building that does not belong to the network. The reason is that only a network allows the owner to charge for electricity used, rather than be forced to pay for it themselves, or pass the cost on equally to all residents, including those who don’t have an EV, which would not lead to happy neighbors.
The station will charge each person as they use it, so only those who use the electricity pay for it. Neither the building owner, nor the other residents, would be paying for your fuel any more than you pay for their gas.
Residents who drive an EV and want to charge from home in a condo or apartment garage may have to do their homework first, but can find a way to turn a “no” into a “yes”, which will ultimately benefit not only you, but other residents.