March 21, 2024

EV Charging Stations for Multifamily Properties: Enhancing Sustainability and Value

6 Min. Read

This article was originally published January 19, 2023 and was updated March 21, 2024.

Utilizing incentives — including tax credits, rebates, and incentives from government agencies and your utility — can prove the most efficient way to invest in EV charging stations for multifamily properties.

However, in order to get the most out of these incentive and rebate programs, it is essential to understand what options are available and how you can apply them at your property.

In this article, we explore the benefits of EV charging stations for multifamily properties and how multifamily communities can take advantage of available incentives to add this essential amenity to support EV drivers, build their reputation as a sustainability and technology-forward leader in their community, and prepare for the future of electrification by planning ahead to meet the demand for EV charging as more EVs hit the roads.

Why Should Multifamily Communities Offer EV Charging Stations?

Studies show that at least 80% of electric vehicle (EV) charging occurs at home.

This presents a problem for owners who live in apartments, condominiums, or other multifamily properties that may not provide access to charging stations. Currently, more than 45 million households in the U.S. are renters and find that it is hard to charge an EV if they have one unless their community offers EV charging stations for multifamily residents.

Solving this problem by installing onsite chargers means offering convenience and efficiency to your residents and upping your competitive edge in the marketplace.

What Is the Demand for EV Charging Stations for Multifamily Properties?

While many owners and managers of multifamily units, particularly apartments and condo complexes, may not initially understand the benefits of offering EV charging or why it is becoming increasingly important, they will still need to fill the vital role of introducing EV charging to their tenants. In first deciding when and how to install an EV charger, it is important to consider the hardware, software, installation, payment plans, and long-term operations and maintenance.

Ultimately, upgrading properties with EV chargers will become an essential need, as combined sales of EVs and hybrid vehicles could represent close to a quarter of new vehicle sales in 2024. By 2030, there could be anywhere between 30 and 42 million EVs on the roads. Experts estimate that Americans will need 26 to 35 million EV charging ports to meet their charging needs at these levels.

Multifamily housing will benefit the most from implementing EV charging stations, creating a win-win situation, in which tenants can have all their charging needs met and owners can boost their revenues and their property reputation and resident retention.

What Do Changing Regulations Mean for EV Charging Stations for Multifamily Properties?

A growing number of states are also adopting Right to Charge laws. These legislations create provisions to support tenants who wish to install charging equipment in rental properties.

A 2022 update to the California Green Building Standards Code introduced a new requirement for multifamily properties. This rule states that at least 10% of parking spaces must be capable of supporting Level 2 EV charging in the future. With other states adopting similar measures, being aware of these changing regulations can help you predict what future needs your property may have.

As more state legislation supports the development of EV charging stations for multifamily properties, you can stay ahead of changing compliance requirements by deploying EV charging stations.

Being an early adopter will also help you gain a competitive edge before a majority of multifamily properties embrace EV charging to keep up with compliance requirements.

How Can You Take Advantage of Multifamily Funding Incentives for EV Charging?

Local, state, and federal programs can offset the bulk of EV charger costs through incentive and rebate programs. This break allows property owners and managers to consider the installation of EV chargers a viable option.

Federal EV charging incentives include a tax credit of 30% of the cost of any EV charging station installation (available via IRS form 8911) for property owners. When preparing to install an EV charging station, it is important to outline your costs and expected savings and incentives realized through tax credits such as this one.

You can save even more by stacking this tax credit with additional incentives available at the state or local level, and many utilities also offer incentives and savings for sustainability initiatives such as EV charging stations for multifamily properties with discounted electric rates, rebates, and other rewards.

In California alone, regulators have approved a $1.9 billion plan to create a zero-emission transport infrastructure. This plan includes an investment of $657.6 million to deploy EV chargers.

California isn’t the only state investing in a modern charging infrastructure. Thanks to the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) program, states can apply to receive their share of $5 billion in funding to develop their public EV charging infrastructure.

Several states are redistributing these funds in the form of rebates and other incentives. For instance, Colorado offers a state-level program known as Charge Ahead Colorado that can cover up to 80% of the installation costs if your multifamily property electrification project meets a few requirements.

Multifamily property owners can also explore incentives offered through utility providers. For instance, Silicon Valley Clean Energy offers rebates of up to $45,000 to support EV charging adoption in multifamily properties. Note that this program prioritizes properties that offer affordable housing.

In Michigan, Consumers Energy offers landlords up to $7,500 in rebates for the installation of at least two EV chargers at a multifamily property.

There are many state, local, and utility programs to explore, and your licensed electrician can work with you to ensure any installation requirements are met. To learn more, check the Database for State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency, to see what incentives are available in your area and what requirements you must meet to qualify.

What Are the Benefits of Offering EV Charging for You and Your Tenants?

Leveraging incentives is an agile way to bring EV charging capabilities to your multifamily property — your tenants will receive the access to charging they need, while you’ll experience savings from government programs and rebates. The EV market is thriving and installing EV chargers today makes your property stand out from the crowd.

Turning EV charging into a new source of revenue is an attractive benefit for multifamily property owners. Whether you decide to adopt a subscription model or charge a flat monthly fee to tenants, you can offset the cost of the project and generate a profit after just a few years, and EV charging stations for multifamily properties can also be combined with other electrification projects such as solar panels or battery storage to further amplify the impact and savings of your electrification initiatives.

Offering EV charging can also improve tenant satisfaction and retention, resulting in lower costs linked to tenant turnover. Plus, EV charging can help foster a sense of community and attract tenants, employees, and investors who share your values.

How Can You Get Started With Your Multifamily EV Charging Project?

Adding charging stations for EVs is a great way to increase your property’s revenue and marketability, but a project of this scale can quickly exceed budgeting and increase in complexity without proper management and a streamlined process.

Having a company with a track record of success in EV charging implementation can keep your project on track and within budget. This approach will also assist you in realizing available incentives for your business, ensuring the installation process is as seamless as possible and you’re taking advantage of cost-effective solutions. Qmerit can help.

As the leading installer of charging stations in homes and multifamily properties in the U.S. and Canada, Qmerit is the most trusted installation network for EV charging stations and other energy transition technologies by top brands and businesses nationwide with over 269,000 EV charging stations installed in homes and businesses across North America to date.

With vast experience in EV charging and a proven track record of success, Qmerit will help with your electric transition from start to finish, ensuring your project is a success and your residents are satisfied. Learn about our multifamily EV charging solutions and contact us today to help navigate your next electrification project to success.

Author: Tom Bowen Tom Bowen President, Qmerit Solutions and Commercial Electrification