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HOA Charger Installation Requirements

NormVA

Member
Jul 30, 2018
54
22
Reston
I live in a townhouse in Reston, VA. Last November I installed a Tesla connector in my parking space. I got the necessary approvals from the Cluster assn and Reston assn. I, also, got the necessary permits from Fairfax county. The work was done by a licensed electrician selected from the Tesla website. All work was inspected by the county.

TeslaAndCharger.jpg TeslaCharger.jpg

Eight month later our cluster association decided that having a charger created a liability for the cluster assn. So they created standards for EV Chargers. Including the following:

6. The unit owner shall provide a certificate of hazard and liability insurance to the CFCA, naming CFCA as an additional insured within fifteen (15) days after receiving CFCA’s approval to install an EVCS and shall keep the insurance valid and in force at all times until the EVCS is removed or disconnected. The liability coverage shall not be less than $1million.
a. The unit owner shall reimburse CFCA for the actual cost of any increased insurance premium amount attributable to the EVCS within fifteen (15) days after receiving CFCA’s invoice documenting the increase in the insurance premium.


There is other onerous wording such that they can reassign my parking space and require me to remove the charger.

I would like to hear if other owners have had similar situations and do EV owners have any rights in these situations.

Thanks, Norm


 

DopeGhoti

Active Member
Aug 28, 2019
1,242
1,429
Phoenix, AZ
It might be worth investigating whether, as your setup complied with the then-enforced requirements when it was installed, it may be 'grandfathered in' and not required the additional liability insurance. It also might be worth chasing down whether or not they can require you to remove the improvements you have paid to have installed with their blessing at your expense, or if such removal should not be covered by you. These are complex questions of contract law, so a consultation with an attorney may be prudent (which is not to say "sue sue sue!"; it's to say "speak to an expert in the field").
 

camalaio

Active Member
May 28, 2019
1,483
2,181
Vernon, BC, Canada
Just wanted to chime in for two things...
  1. That's a super clean charger install you have, with bollards! That's sweet.
  2. As someone in another country, I'm sorry you have to deal with HOAs.
I'd say someone clearly got concerned and went off the deep end, as HOA folk apparently tend to do. Don't tell them about the tanks of explosive, flammable material that all the other cars contain. Just imagine! /s

I'm really confused about if they're asking you to get insurance or asking you to reimburse their higher insurance costs. They seem to say both?

For your sake and others, I hope a reasonable and respectful conversation resolves this.
 
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Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
6,765
8,356
Boise, ID
Eight month later our cluster association decided that having a charger created a liability for the cluster assn. So they created standards for EV Chargers. Including the following:
Those look like they mirror almost exactly the type of wording which is in place for California. They are not allowed to forbid renters from having EVSEs installed, but they have those stipulations that they are allowed to require, and I'll bet one of them heard about that and went and looked it up and decided to add those provisions in your association too. So it seems common.

It might be worth investigating whether, as your setup complied with the then-enforced requirements when it was installed, it may be 'grandfathered in' and not required the additional liability insurance. It also might be worth chasing down whether or not they can require you to remove the improvements you have paid to have installed with their blessing at your expense, or if such removal should not be covered by you. These are complex questions of contract law, so a consultation with an attorney may be prudent (which is not to say "sue sue sue!"; it's to say "speak to an expert in the field").
:D Hah!! Uh, no, no need to investigate that. There is absolutely no way in hell they could try to enforce new provisions that they made up after the fact on an installation that they already approved and was completed. Period. That would not fly anywhere, in any state, so you don't need to worry about that.

There is other onerous wording such that they can reassign my parking space and require me to remove the charger.
As just mentioned, these are not things they can apply to you after the fact. But they are pretty onerous for any new renters applying to do this in the future.
 
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user212_nr

Active Member
Aug 26, 2019
1,407
873
US
a. The unit owner shall reimburse CFCA for the actual cost of any increased insurance premium amount attributable to the EVCS within fifteen (15) days after receiving CFCA’s invoice documenting the increase in the insurance premium.

The two conditions seem like they should be either/or rather than requiring both. If you reimburse them for additional insurance, and you have insurance, then they are deliberately paying twice. Your coverage should offset theirs.

Also, many have found it hard to meet the condition of such insurance because it is so rare. In an either/or situation, it would be easier if you just paid them for "6a" their additional costs.

These are complex questions of contract law, so a consultation with an attorney may be prudent (which is not to say "sue sue sue!"; it's to say "speak to an expert in the field").

I think if they are serious about saying that applies only to the OP, then definitely he needs to see a lawyer. Especially given that many have not been able to find such insurance, it may not be so easy as just paying it.

Just paying it is ideal if the costs aren't too high.
 
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picklem

Member
Jan 7, 2020
58
29
Reston
I'm actually about to move into a Reston townhouse and am in the exact same situation.
May I ask how much it cost you, specifically the installation?
I think I might go for a Clipper Creek charger instead of a Tesla charger though.
 

NormVA

Member
Jul 30, 2018
54
22
Reston
The installation was $4K. I had to supply the Tesla charger, that was $500 and I also had no room for an additional breaker in my electrical box. New electrical box was $2500.

You might want to consider the Tesla charger. There is no power to the connector until it is plugged into the vehicle. This is a strong safety point if the HOA gives you a hard time. I wound up getting an attorney to fight the HOA. If you email me directly I can give you more details and also a copy of the documents to submit to Reston Association Design Review Board.

I, and another resident, contacted our insurance companies (State Farm and USAA ) Neither has ever had a claim involving an EV Charger)
Hopefully there are not other HOAs in Reston that are as anti EV as Chadds Ford. Email: [email protected]
Norm
 
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brkaus

Well-Known Member
Jul 8, 2014
8,083
6,644
Austin, TX
I, and another resident, contacted our insurance companies (State Farm and USAA ) Neither has ever had a claim involving an EV Charger)
I agree the risk is minimal. Would State Farm cover this under an umbrella policy? They are surprisingly affordable.
 

picklem

Member
Jan 7, 2020
58
29
Reston
Thanks for the info @NormVA, I'm surprised it was so hard given Virginia has the Right to Charge law that bars them from blocking people from installing chargers even if they live in a condo.
I was hoping it would be closer to $2k all up, I bet I'll need a new electrical box too which will add to the price...
I bet it won't help that the box is also at the rear of the building, one floor down. About as far away from the car space as possible.
 

NormVA

Member
Jul 30, 2018
54
22
Reston
Thanks for the info @NormVA, I'm surprised it was so hard given Virginia has the Right to Charge law that bars them from blocking people from installing chargers even if they live in a condo.
I was hoping it would be closer to $2k all up, I bet I'll need a new electrical box too which will add to the price...
I bet it won't help that the box is also at the rear of the building, one floor down. About s as far away from the car space as possible.

VA has a right to charge law, but Condo Assns and HOAs can add restrictions which my not prohibit add a charger, but make it very difficult and expensive, plus add threatening wording like they can remove it at the owner expense. Not sure if all this would stand up in court.

Unfortunately, adding a charger is expensive, not sure of any way around it. If HOAs wanted to encourage EVs they could help with infrastructure.

To own an EV you really need a charger because the battery goes down even if you don't use the car.

Norm
 

Ritz

Member
Mar 16, 2020
159
150
Virginia

Add that to reasons not to live in Reston (moved myself 20 minutes west to rid myself of HOA scourge). I find it hard to believe that you can be held accountable to new requirements after the install. But then again, an HOA will just use your own money to sue you and then fine you into submission.

Good luck.
 
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garth_angst

Member
Mar 30, 2019
346
134
long island
I live in a townhouse in Reston, VA. Last November I installed a Tesla connector in my parking space. I got the necessary approvals from the Cluster assn and Reston assn. I, also, got the necessary permits from Fairfax county. The work was done by a licensed electrician selected from the Tesla website. All work was inspected by the county.

View attachment 568371 View attachment 568373

Eight month later our cluster association decided that having a charger created a liability for the cluster assn. So they created standards for EV Chargers. Including the following:

6. The unit owner shall provide a certificate of hazard and liability insurance to the CFCA, naming CFCA as an additional insured within fifteen (15) days after receiving CFCA’s approval to install an EVCS and shall keep the insurance valid and in force at all times until the EVCS is removed or disconnected. The liability coverage shall not be less than $1million.
a. The unit owner shall reimburse CFCA for the actual cost of any increased insurance premium amount attributable to the EVCS within fifteen (15) days after receiving CFCA’s invoice documenting the increase in the insurance premium.


There is other onerous wording such that they can reassign my parking space and require me to remove the charger.

I would like to hear if other owners have had similar situations and do EV owners have any rights in these situations.

Thanks, Norm


These always make me laugh. 10 years, 20 years, maybe 30 years down the line these people are going to see how ridiculous this mandate is when there will be no more gasoline cars and all townhouses and condos are going to be required to install chargers at their expense.
 
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