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Personal EV station at Condo

Carlx1

Member
Jul 21, 2020
9
1
Baltimore, Md
A small group of condo and EV owners are now on an eight-month journey with our condo HOA trying to get personal charging at their deeded parking spaces.

At this point we are at a logjam with the discussion on billing. We are proposing to connect a sub panel connected to the building lighting panel to a line with a KWH meter (and appropriate breakers, etc.) to the station.

Problem now is billing. The HOA is insisting that they don't want anything to do with billing and that other owners should not subsidize our usage. (As if we would ask them to!!).

Have others run up against this problem? If so, how did you solve it?
 
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Watts_Up

Active Member
Mar 4, 2019
3,327
2,249
In a galaxy far, far away
We are proposing to connect a sub panel connected to the building lighting panel
to a line with a kWh meter (and appropriate breakers, etc.) to the station.
1. How many charging stations and how many Amp for each station you plan to install?

2. Do you plan having any L1 (110 V 15/20 A) service plugs ?
(for Hybrids Plugin, EV Motorcycles or EV Bicycles, and battery tender)

3. What would be the number of phases and Amp of your Sub Panel?

4. Do you have WiFi access in your garage?

Have others run up against this problem? If so, how did you solve it?
I am currently working with my landlord for providing a small pool of charging stations.

The main issue will be to have an extra dedicated line requiring
making a trench unless an aerial connection could be possible.

For the financing we plan to have a prepaid monthly fee
to cover the installation cost, and estimated electricity cost.

Each unit will have its own meter, so we plan to review the real electricity cost every quarter
and make individual adjustments the following month.

There will be a sub panel with all units meters and all the circuits breakers,
with the main meter and circuit breaker.

To get advantage of the ToU we plan to have a timer to allow
charging only at night to take advantage of the best rate.

We contacted some commercial charging stations but the subscription cost would not
interest tenants because there are several L2 and Supercharger stations nearby.

We will provide only a plug and a lockable cabinet, but no charger since those are in general
already provided with the car, so maintenance will be the responsibility of the users.
 
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FrunkLover

Member
Apr 28, 2020
37
14
Queens, New York
Bumping this in case the OP was able to resolve? I’m about to enter in the same scenario in a new condo build, tho am unclear if any other deeded spots will have electricity requirements Iike me. I am deed a spot right next to a 5-15 outlet (and will try and swap for a 5-20). Was thinking of seeing if the parking area has its own meter and paying for it, though I can’t imagine it does.
 

hokies11

New Member
Feb 16, 2021
2
5
Washington DC
I am working at the moment to get my condo to approve a run to my meter. This should remove a lot of objections due to admin. Obviously that may not work in your situation depending on how far you are from your meter room.

Very anxious to see what the HOA says. They seem well meaning- but I don't have high hopes. Very minor details always come up for things and it pushes decisions perpetually to the next meeting.

I have also been trying to get them to approve an upgrade to gigabit in the building for two years, which Verizon will do for free... One guy on the board vetoed the decision for them to come on site to provide their initial assessment because he though we should review our legal paperwork for all our utilities first. That alone added a year.
 
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hokies11

New Member
Feb 16, 2021
2
5
Washington DC
In regards to OP- I would try to find an electrician that specializes in EV charging. While most electricians do EV installs- there should be one or two in most major metro areas where its their bread and butter who can really consult better than any of us.

As others have said Charge point's niche is actually resolving your issue, they deal with the billing but you will pay for the privilege. My friend paid 10K to buy into an existing charge point installation in a high rise condo. On top of that it's a monthly $20 admin charge + electricity (although the electricity is not marked up).

If you are close to your personal meter, and there is room for a subpanel in the electrical room that's the cheaper option.
 

TMYB-C1

Supporting Member
Feb 15, 2021
84
11
USA
Are there any success stories with this and I so can you please share details? I am a condo owner in an old submetered building where our electric bill is factored in common charges each month, not paid directly to the electric company.
 

NCAviator

Member
Aug 19, 2017
125
89
North Carolina
I live in a Condo association with 4 buildings and each building has 4 units. We do not have assigned parking, but have 2 parking areas for each building. I am the first to get an electric auto. We have a common circuit breaker panel in the front of each building. 200 amps. I wired in to the common panel and have a 60amp breaker. I get 48amps at the ChargePoint and max my Model Y charger.

Our electric company has a program to supply a ChargePoint Home Flex and provide a $300 credit to your electric bill.

So that is what I did. See picture below. Right now I am the only user. I go to the Chargepoint web site each quarter. Run a report of my usage and then write a check to the condo association for the electricity used.

I am now looking at a new charger coming on the market. AlphaEVCharger

This charger will allow for a PIN for each owner. They enter the PIN and it will start the charger and record the usage. It will have a web site connection capability so report will be easy. What I like over the ChargePoint commercial chargers for their Condo solution is there are no cloud fees and the charger costs about what a home charger cost.

For me, I use about $25 to $30 per month in electricity.

Key to working with HOA Boards is talking about keeping their property viable for resale. Talk about how having chargers will be a marketing plus. If they start overthinking it you will have a hard road.

 

pdx_m3s

Active Member
May 18, 2019
1,322
1,154
Portland, OR
What about a fixed monthly fee added to your HOA dues? You'll have to work out an appropriate amount and add a buffer to make the comfortable, but may be a good compromise to get it through.
 

Wreckz

Member
Jan 26, 2021
168
106
Honolulu, HI
I'm lucky I live in a condo (44 floors and my parking in on the 11th) were someone did the leg work in getting their EV charger in their assigned parking space. I think it cost them 5-8k depending what floor their spot was on.

Anyways, I found this to be a good read. When and if I install my EV charger my building manager said the setup is exactly like in this article with sub metering etc.

My $6,000 Tesla Wall Connector: the story of bringing Electric Vehicle charging to a high-rise condo tower in Seattle - Jeff Wilcox
 
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Carlx1

Member
Jul 21, 2020
9
1
Baltimore, Md
Thank you for all of the suggestions. After 10 months we ended up throwing in the towel for the time being. Our last proposal was essentially Watts_Up's solution, without the need for financing. We were proposing to pay for a common run for all of the existing EVs with space for future chargers from the run we were installing. The building has sufficient capacity at the main for EVs for the forseeable future. The Board insisted that we would have to be billed directly by the utility and that undefined future scenarios be resolved such as if additional trenching would be required in the future, how would it be paid for, etc. Those of us with EVs are making do with nearby public charging and at work locations. Some of you were fortunate enough to have boards that worked with you, but ours is stuck in the 20th century.
 

BigTrailer

Member
Mar 18, 2021
70
55
Toronto, Canada
One of the things that can be done is to get other owners on side. While most other owners may not care about your particular plight, everyone in the condo is concerned about resale value.

I'm sure someone good at this has written up a good flyer you can leave in a common area discussing the advantages in resale value for Condos with available EV charging. I know a colleague of mine was asking me about what is needed as he was shopping for a new condo, He's a complete petrol head - but he was convinced that eventually he'd make the jump and wanted to be prepared.
 
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