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Apartment renters still hesitant to adopt EVs due to lack of home charging

Recently, we sat down for an interview with Amperage Capital CEO, Farrukh Malik, who is trying to address the EV charging needs of 44-million Americans who live in apartments. If you live in an apartment in the U.S. and have considered purchasing an electrified vehicle, it’s very likely the lack of home charging has deterred you from making that purchase. And you’re not alone, as shown by a recent report produced by EVAdoption for Amperage Capital.

Titled “The State of EV Charging in Apartment Communities,” the report shows why companies like Malik’s is important to the future of EV adoption in the U.S. The report, which you can download here, goes over a few facts about the current EV market including that U.S. EV sales have tripled in the last three years. Including both BEVs and PHEVs, U.S. sales reached 975,000 as of 2022, with sales doubling in 2021 and growing 51% in 2022 over 2021. Sales data comes from the Alliance for Automotive Innovation and S&P Mobility, which showed the U.S. reached 3.3-million electrified vehicles cumulatively sold from 2015 to 2022. The biggest takeaway here is that the number of EVs on the road will potentially double every two to three years, if not quicker.

Sales data also showed that PHEV and BEV sales reached 7% last year, but BEV sales accounted for the majority at 5.7%. Home charging for a PHEV is much more manageable than a BEV, as most PHEVs being sold today can fully charge overnight off a standard household electrical outlet. BEVs are different with much more electric range and basically requires a Level 2 home charger, which is more difficult to come across if you live in an apartment.

Not surprisingly, California leads the country with market share at 20.1%, followed by Washington, D.C. at 14.9%. Rounding out the top five are Washington (12.6%), Oregon (12.2%), and Nevada (11.2%). According to the data analyzed by EVAdoption, new BEV sales in the U.S. are forecasted to reach 7.8 million in 2030, with market share reaching 44.3%. That means right now, a multifamily owner/manager might have two to three tenants who are driving EVs today, but that number could potentially grow to 30 or more in 2030. Naturally, no apartment complex in the U.S. could support that volume as it stands today.

In a recent study conducted by JD Power, 27% of buyers who own their home say they are “very likely to consider” an EV, compared to 17% for those who rent. In a different study conducted in 2021 by the UCLA Luskin School, only 5% of single-family home dwellers don’t have access to charging at their home, compared to 48% of renters — this is in the Southern California market.

It’s a discussion that occurs frequently online and across social media. People who are interested in EVs but live in apartments don’t have a viable solution for home charging, and it’s one of the main reasons many of those don’t end up purchasing an EV. The 2022 National Multi Housing Council and Grace Hill Renter Preferences Survey showed 27% were interested in EV chargers. The survey consisted of 221,000 renters living in 4,600 communities and 79 markets. EVAdoption’s report believes in the coming years, not offering EV chargers at apartments will be similar to not offering amenities like cable TV or laundry facilities.

While studies like this should typically be taken with a grain of salt, since its purpose is to aid in Amperage Capital’s mission to setup EV charging at apartments in the U.S., there are a lot of facts here that can’t be ignored. And really, you’d just have to spend a few minutes on /r/electricvehicles to know the lack of a charging infrastructure for apartment dwellers is a major issue for EV adoption in the U.S.

Written by Jason Siu

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