Electric vehicles (EV) are becoming more and more popular. in 2022, 1% of the light vehicles driven are EVs in the US. With the sales projections, this number is expected to reach 45% by 2050. Thanks to their ranges getting extended, vacationers can now drive there to their destinations. The main constraint is that a decent size battery needs to be charged for 8-9 hours if a Level 2 charge is used. This creates a demand for condominiums and vacation rental homes to install EV chargers so that the guests can charge during their overnight stay. That also means that a property with an EV charger may be targeted by a search made by the guest. Airbnb, VRBO, Booking.com all introduced these as amenities in their systems, while it was not there a few years ago
EV chargers have different cost components. Initial investment or lease, annual subscription or maintenance costs and finally the utility bills. The last component, the utility bill is very easily transferred to the guest if an EV Charger with billing system is used. In many states, EV chargers are exempt from electric resale regulations hence even a profit is possible to add on top.
All of these companies share the revenue with you; you getting around 80% to 96% of the revenue. Per kWh rate can be set from the system, as well as any possible idle fees to make sure user does not leave the EV parked there after charging is completed.
We have been researching Level 2 (40-50 amperes@240VAC) EV Chargers for Pelican Beach Resort, and I wanted to share the options there along with pros and cons. This is not a comprehensive list but a few companies for comparison and decision making purposes. There are zillion alternatives there, and when you read this blog; it may well be two zillion by then.
So here we go:
OK2Charge targets hotels, apartment communities, resorts, SFR communities and BnBs in their marketing. They have partnered with several property management platforms such as Ownerrez. This enables host to add their guests info into the system so they can initiate charging.
OK2Charge Level 2 charging stations are built on Enel Way’s Juicebox charger hardware. They implement their own software on them, and put a unique QR code on each charger. The user can scan this QR code and can initiate charging by putting in his payment details. This is an advantage for me as I prefer not to use ten different apps to charge my car. It works with Wifi, so there is no sim-card in it. Hence you need to have a good coverage.
You pay for charger itself, a pedestal if you need one and also annual subscription fee.
ChargePoint is probably the most common commercial EV charger in the US. They have a wide network of commercial and private chargers. You need to use their app to begin charging and top money to the account. Their model is also different compared to others. You lease the chargers from ChargePoint with a commitment of 5 years. The monthly payments cover the initial equipment installation, subscription payments and also on site warranty and maintenance. You still need to do the electric work by yourself. In this model, cost of first year ownership is similar to others but 5 year total cost of ownership becomes much more. But that includes the convenience of on site maintenance. You also never own the equipment. Once your lease ends and if you decide to extend it; they will likely install newer technology equipment.
EVConnect was the only company which offered both purchase and lease of their equipment. The lease cost is similar to ChargePoint, and in case of ownership, the equipment comes with 2 years warranty buy you can pay for extended warranty and onsite maintenance with commitments of 3 and 5 years. If you buy the chargers, their chargers are more expensive compared to OK2Charge and EVPassport. EV Connect uses an app to start the charging and we saw very good reviews of their app in App Store. These are the highest paying folks when it comes to revenue sharing, at 96%.
We also researched SemaConnect, unfortunately their app was very low rated at App Store. Eoslinx is another company building advertisement panels together with their chargers and said that they plan to roll out the residential integration program Q1 of 2023.
We never got any response from EnviroSpark, Evgo and Wallbox.