Where do I charge? What’s the process? How do I pay? Over 2.2 million Australians call apartments home, and many still have no clear answers on how to charge an electric vehicle (EV) at home.
Our research tells us that the response from Owners Corporations (OCs) on providing charging infrastructure is mixed. Some are trying their best to keep up, while others seem unprepared or even unwilling. With EV ownership on the rise and over 80 per cent of owners preferring to charge at home, the pressure is on to resolve.
So, what can be done to make sure apartments aren’t left behind? Put simply, we need to remove barriers to the installation of chargers to make charging an EV accessible and convenient. We need EV adoption fast if we are to reduce transport emissions and achieve net zero by 2050. We cannot run the risk of turning people off.
Solving this for OCs and apartment dwellers requires:
The National Electric Vehicle Strategy leading the way
National leadership on EVs is in train with the National Electric Vehicle Strategy: consultation paper process underway. To date, state and territory governments have taken the lead, with local governments following suit, resulting in a range of different approaches. National planning, coordination, and effective integration of infrastructure and systems will accelerate uptake. It will give OCs and apartment dwellers the confidence that charging needs will be met outside of the property, as well as in.
The National Strategy could provide OCs with both educational and financial help. A national commercial campaign promoting the benefits of EV uptake, as with solar or smoke alarms, would elevate understanding. Incentives or rebates would give practical help. Norway offers up to 50 per cent off the purchase and installation price for a slow charger in a home or office building. Subsidising EV charging assessments undertaken by an electrical professional or manufacturer would make it more attractive for OCs to understand their charging capabilities. Mandating a standard user agreement or billing method policy managed by the state would ensure fair dealing in energy use billing for both OCs and building users.