September 5, 2023

How Multifamily Properties Can Leverage EV Charging Stations to Attract Tenants


6 Min. Read

The rising number of electric vehicles (EVs) on the road indicates a growing trend in car owners becoming eco-conscious with their buying decisions and appreciating the improved technology EVs have to offer. It’s safe to say that this extends to their other purchases and financial decisions. While still a niche market, this is a movement that multifamily property owners and managers cannot ignore. Installing EV charging stations is a smart investment to attract tenants and will also earn commercial multifamily properties the reputation of promoting sustainable businesses, generate a new potential for revenue, and position their property as a future-thinking leader within their community.

In this article, we’ll discuss the benefits of adding EV charging stations to the list of amenities offered by multifamily properties to both the owners and their tenants, and outline the challenges in installing chargers and the corresponding solutions to overcome them.

Elevating Tenant Experience in Multifamily Properties

In 2022, electric car sales increased by 55% in the US. This growth is expected to continue in 2023 and statistics show that Americans have already purchased more than 2.3 million EVs in the first quarter of the year.

Increasing EV sales translates to more EV drivers and a greater need for charging stations. The government, acknowledging this growing need, is undertaking a massive project to construct a network of 500,000 chargers along America’s highways and in communities.

Multifamily property owners and managers can ride the tide of this development by following suit. Installing EV charging stations will prove to be beneficial in more ways than one.

Tenant Retention

Many EV owners prefer recharging their vehicles overnight, ensuring they are ready for their daily tasks or commuting to work the next day. This approach allows them to relax or sleep while their vehicles get charged. Multifamily property tenants are no exception.

Providing charging infrastructure right where people live ensures this need is satisfied. Consequently, the property manager is assured of their continued tenancy.

Despite this positive outcome, some managers hesitate to add such charging solutions due to installation costs. Rightly so because installing EV charging stations is an expensive undertaking involving equipment, installers, and potential reconstruction of electrical circuitry.

If financial support were available, more multifamily property owners would not hesitate to undertake the addition.

Financial Aid from the Government

The good news is that federal and state government incentives, such as the Inflation Reduction Act, support property owners with rebates and other savings that help with covering the installation of charging stations.

One such incentive is the Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) rebate program in Maryland, which allocates fund assistance for the purchase and installation of charging stations. Some states provide tax credits, while others offer grants.

In Colorado, EV charging stations will be accepted as property tax exemptions until January 1, 2030. Meanwhile, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) offers funding through its eMobility Grant Program.

By taking advantage of government incentives and regulations, multifamily properties can successfully implement EV charging stations to serve their existing clientele.

Rise Above the Competition

Functional amenities such as EV chargers ensure that multifamily properties remain competitive for future renters.

Most importantly, the convenience and accessibility that current tenants can enjoy with on-site charging stations is an invaluable basis for referrals.

Having on-site EV charging stations can now be considered a must-have for multifamily properties. Renters who own EVs are looking for residences that offer charging infrastructure, and providing this amenity can help attract tenants like them.

Additionally, current residents who are also EV owners will consider the thoughtful addition a positive experience and stay loyal to the property.

EV Charging Stations Boost Multifamily Property Value

Offering an EV charging solution can be a key selling point for multifamily properties looking to attract tenants.

Properties that invest in EV charging infrastructure demonstrate that they are forward-thinking and dedicated to green initiatives. It indicates the owners’ commitment to sustainability and corporate social responsibility, which environmentally conscious tenants often seek.

Another attraction of EV charging stations in multifamily properties is the time-saving factor. Especially for urban dwellers who live a fast-paced life, having their car chargers in the same building they reside in is priceless.

Moreover, EV charging stations are a unique amenity that can make a multifamily property stand out from its competitors. Not many properties offer such sought-after features. In fact, electrification can be difficult for old commercial buildings with structures that are not quite ready to switch from gas power.

Owners can also recover their investment by charging their tenants for using the chargers. The markup on per kilowatt cost can be as high as three times the original price. Certain property managers of multifamily residences have already implemented such an arrangement, especially to prevent tenants from monopolizing charging stations.

Of course, this can be at the discretion of the property manager. It can also be a free service to keep current tenants happy and convince potential renters to choose the property over others.

Strategies for a Successful Implementation of EV Charging Stations

Adding EV charging infrastructure to a commercial multifamily property is not a simple project. It requires careful and deliberate planning and execution.

Step 1: Assessment

Owners or managers must consider the number of units, parking layout, and availability of electrical sources. These factors will determine the optimal number and the best type of charging station to install.

Consider these options for a multifamily property:

  • Level 1 Charging Stations – basic, most affordable, lowest charging speed, not recommended for large cars or SUVs
  • Level 2 Charging Stations – more advanced, multiple, and faster charging, and most common in residential settings due to compatibility with most EVs
  • Combination Charging Stations – if the price is an issue, but some residents are amenable to using Level 1 chargers, owners may choose to install those and add a few Level 2 chargers.

Step 2: Hire a Professional Installation Team

Commissioning experienced EV charging providers and installers is the most important decision a multifamily property owner or manager will make to ensure the project’s success. Settling for cheaper options might lead to issues that could be more costly down the road.

To guarantee seamless installation and the least disturbance on the property while the work is being done, choose a company with a track record in reliability, like Qmerit.

A reputable provider also boasts updated equipment, high-tech processes, and professional staff who complete projects on time. Transparency is assured not only with the financial aspect but also with the timelines. They usually provide post-installation maintenance as well.

Step 3: Market The New Amenity

Once the EV charging stations are in place, reintroduce the multifamily property to potential renters through various marketing efforts.

Highlighting the availability of EV charging amenities can help attract tenants looking for sustainable options that align with their values.

EV charging stations can be a win-win for both renters and property owners if the infrastructure and marketing are in place.

EV Charge Your Multifamily Property with the Experts

Multifamily EV charging stations are an excellent opportunity to increase your properties’ revenues and marketability. But there are uncertainties in the process that can be made clear by a careful planning process with a company with a track record for success with EV charging implementation.

As the leading installer of EV charging stations in homes and multifamily properties in the U.S., Qmerit is that company.

With a long track record and deep experience in EV charging, Qmerit will stay with you from start to finish. Contact Qmerit today to navigate your multifamily project to success.

Author: Tom Bowen

Tom Bowen

President, Qmerit Solutions and Commercial Electrification