Addressing Common Questions About EV Charging in Multifamily Properties
Electric vehicles are quickly gaining popularity nationwide. In fact, recent studies show that EVs on the road will reach 125 million by 2030. This means that multifamily properties and apartment complexes need to update their infrastructure to accommodate EV drivers now. Along with EV sales growing, electric vehicles are also becoming more affordable and more common. In the next few years, it won’t be only Teslas on the road. GM, Ford, and other more affordable options will begin to dominate this industry.
With the increase in EV sales and potential residents requesting EV charging stations, property managers and developers have questions about how to integrate them at their properties. The OK2Charge is made up of multifamily industry experts who understand the common concerns about adding a new amenity to your property.
Here are the answers to the most common questions we get from managers and devleopers.
Question 1: How many charging stations will I need?
Answer: The number of charging stations you require will depend on the number of EV owners in your property.
One charging station can serve multiple EV owners, but you should aim to provide enough stations to ensure that everyone can conveniently charge their vehicles. As a rule of thumb, a minimum of one charging station per ten units is recommended.
Here are a few other factors to consider:
Make sure you're considering your property's population when thinking about how many EV chargers to install. Surveying residents to understand their needs is a great option. However, current EV owners may not reflect the need for the next 1-3 years.
That's why we recommend future-proofing.
Future-proofing your property
Installing EV charging stations is a long-term investment, so it's important to future-proof your property by anticipating the number of EVs that are likely to be owned by your residents in the future.
According to BloombergNEF, electric vehicles are projected to account for 58% of global passenger vehicle sales by 2040. This highlights the increasing consumer demand for EVs and their potential dominance in the automotive market. You will want to install more charging stations than you currently need to accommodate future growth.
This is particularly true if your property is located in areas where EV adoption is already high or expected to grow. Future-proofing your property ensures resident satisfaction and avoids the need for installing more charging stations in the future.
Time is a crucial factor when it comes to EV charging, and it affects the number of charging stations your property needs. Level 1 chargers take up to 12 hours to fully charge an EV, while level 2 chargers take between 4 - 6 hours. Level 3 chargers, commonly known as DC fast chargers, can charge an EV up to 80% in just 30 minutes.
If your residents or guests are time-sensitive, especially if they only park overnight, they will need fast chargers. Therefore, you may need to install more fast chargers than slow chargers.
Type of parking
If your property has garages and/or parking lots, the type of parking available plays a significant role in determining the number of charging stations you need. Covered parking spots require less charging infrastructure than uncovered or outside parking. If your multifamily property has indoor garage spaces, you can install fewer charging stations than if your property has only outdoor parking.
The physical space available to accommodate charging stations is a vital consideration when deciding how many to install. Charging stations typically require a dedicated space of at least 9x18 feet, with two or more adjacent spaces required for multiple charging stations. Consider how much space you can allocate to charging stations, and then determine the number of stations and battery capacity that can fit in that area.
Question 2: How much will it cost to install EV charging stations in my property?
Answer: The cost of installing EV charging stations will depend on several factors such as the number of stations you require, the location, and the infrastructure required to support them.
Here are a fe things to consider when you're thinking about costs involved with EV charging.
The Type of Charging Station
There are three types of EV charging stations: Level 1, Level 2, and DC Fast Charging. Level 1 charging is the slowest, usually taking 8-12 hours to fully charge a car battery. It uses a regular 120-volt outlet, and the cost of installation is minimal. Level 2 charging is faster, usually taking 4-6 hours, and requires a 240-volt outlet. The installation cost for a Level 2 charging station can range from $3,000 to $7,000. DC Fast Charging is the fastest, taking anywhere from 20-40 minutes to charge a car battery. It requires high voltage and amperage, which makes it the most expensive electric car charging stations to install, with costs ranging from $20,000 to $60,000.
The Number of Charging Stations
The number of EV charging stations you need depends on the size of your property and the number of EV drivers who will be using them. As a general rule of thumb, you should have one charging station for every two EVs. This means that if you have 20 parking spaces, you'd need 10 charging stations. Each charging station can cost between $3,000 to $60,000, depending on the type of charging station and installation requirements.
The Infrastructure of Your Property
Another factor that can impact the cost of installing EV charging stations is the infrastructure of your property. If your property is old, you may need to upgrade the electrical system to support the charging stations. This can significantly increase installation costs and charging time. You may also need to install new conduit, wiring, and switchgear to connect the charging stations to the grid.
Question 3: Can EV charging stations increase the value of my property?
Answer: Yes, adding EV charging stations to your property can increase its value in several ways:
Attracting New Residents:
One of the most significant benefits of installing EV charging stations on your property is the potential to attract new residents to your property. As the demand for eco-friendly transportation options increases, many residents will desire properties that offer charging stations for their EVs.
By meeting this demand, your property can become more appealing to potential residents, making it easier to maintain long-term occupancy and decrease competition. This can lead to stable and predictable cash flow, which translates to higher property values.
Future-Proofing Your Property:
The updated green building codes will require installing electric vehicle charging stations in many new buildings or renovations. This requirement will only become more common in the near future. Investment in EV charging stations will future-proof your property against ever-evolving regulations. Doing this on time provides a clear competitive edge over other properties that may not be prepared for the next wave of EV owners.
Increasing Property Value:
Property values are driven by a variety of factors, including location, square footage, features, amenities, and market trends. EVs are rapidly gaining popularity and electric charging stations, once considered a novelty, are likely to become an essential feature of any property that intends to remain competitive in the future.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) forecasts that electric cars will become increasingly popular in the next decade, estimating that the number of these eco-friendly vehicles will reach 145 million worldwide by 2030. This represents a significant increase from the approximately 11 million EVs on the road today. With this level of growth, we can expect the popularity of EVs to continue to surge, making it even more of a necessity to add charging stations to your property.
Notably, this feature will apply to the property’s value, making it a feasible investment in the long run.
Make Your Property More Sustainable:
EV charging stations are considered an amenity by many modern consumers. Residents and guests will appreciate that your property is taking action towards a sustainable future for the environment. Green buildings and taking measures that reduce environmental impact have become selling points for many market segments, including the Millennial and Gen Z populations. Embracing this trend will make your property more attractive to prospective residents and increase its overall value.
When properly implemented, an EV charging station can be a revenue source for property managers or landlords. EV charging stations can help attract customers to businesses within the property or area, hence increasing foot traffic. Additionally, landlords or property managers may charge EV drivers for the use of the charging stations, which can translate to a new revenue stream for the property. Providing a charging spot to a corporate office can generate revenue as well.
Question 4: Do I need to employ an electrician to install EV charging stations?
Answer: Yes, it is recommended that you employ an experienced and licensed electrician to install EV charging stations. Installing charging stations involves significant electrical work and ensuring that everything is done correctly is extremely important for the safety of your residents. This also includes ensuring that your property’s electrical infrastructure can support the additional load that comes with installing charging stations.
Question 5: How do I ensure that the EV charging stations are accessible to all residents?
Answer: Location, Accessibility, and Availability of Charging Stations:
To ensure that the EV charging stations are accessible to all residents, you should place them in a location that is visible, easy to reach, and accommodates people with disabilities. Keep in mind that not all your residents can easily access the charging stations, so make sure to include those with physical disabilities. The charging stations should also meet the American Disabilities Act (ADA) guidelines, with at least one charging station that meets ADA accessibility standards. In addition, ensure that the charging stations are available at reasonable times and distribute them evenly around the property.
When you choose the OK2Charge EV charging platform, you'll have access to reservations.
If you're managing a multifamily property, it's essential to choose an EV charging platform with a reservations feature. While not all platforms offer this option, it's a game-changer for improving the resident and guest experience. With reservations, your residents can charge their EVs precisely when they need to, making life easier for everyone involved.
Integrating EV charging stations into your multifamily property can be a great way to cater to the evolving energy needs of residents and future-proof your property. While there are some common questions and concerns associated with installing EV charging stations, addressing these concerns can help you make an informed decision. By employing an experienced electrician, considering accessibility, and taking advantage of incentives and rebates, you can install EV charging stations in your property and benefit from increased resident satisfaction, value, and ultimately a contribution to a cleaner and more sustainable future.