10 steps to a successful installation at an apartment building
If you're a condo, apartment or townhome resident (or group of residents) looking to install electric vehicle (EV) chargers in your building, it can be difficult to know where to start. We've laid out the steps involved in the process below and provided some helpful resources and tips along the way.
Support to get started
Need help navigating the process? You can get up to five hours of free advice and planning assistance from an expert in EV charging and equipment.
Learn about rebates
Two different provincial rebate options are available to help support EV charging in apartment, condo and townhome complexes. The EV Ready option is a set of three cohesive rebates for your project: creating an EV Ready plan for your building, installing the electrical infrastructure to implement your plan, and purchasing and installing the chargers to implement your plan. The second option is the standalone EV charger rebate.
Step 1: Get permission
Unless you have authority over the building, it's likely that you'll have to get permission before starting the process of installing EV chargers. Follow our guide to learn how to make a successful request to your strata council or building manager to have chargers installed. It doesn't matter if you're a tenant or an owner, anyone can get started with a request.
Step 2: Hire an electrician
Step 3: Pick a location
Determine where the chargers will be installed.
Step 4: Check your electrical system
Before installing an EV charger in your building or complex, it's important to find out whether the electrical system can accommodate the additional energy usage. This is why we require you to hire an electrician to conduct a load calculation as part of the electrical permitting process.
To make this step easier, we can provide you with a report showing your building's meter usage data over the last 12 months. Your electrician can then use this information to confirm that there is sufficient electrical capacity to support your EV charging.
You and/or your electrician can request your building's data online.
Step 5: Review building rules
Read over your building's rules and bylaws relating to EV charging and plan to make any necessary changes and updates.
To meet our rebate eligibility criteria, you'll need to wait until you've received pre-approval from BC Hydro before you purchase and install chargers.
Step 6: Draft user agreement
Establish a framework for user agreements with residents. Here, you may need to consult with a lawyer.
Step 7: Select your chargers
Work with your electrician to choose the rebate-eligible EV charger models that will best suit tenants' and visitors' needs. Discover the options available by visiting our list of eligible chargers for apartments and workplaces.
Know your options: Choosing an EV charger
Step 8: Rebate pre-approval
Submit a pre-approval application to get a rebate on the purchase and installation of the chargers.
To meet our rebate eligibility criteria, you'll need to have pre-approval from BC Hydro before purchasing or installing chargers.
Apply for pre-approval: EV charger rebates for apartments, condo and townhome complexes
Step 9: Installation
Once you've been pre-approved for EV charger funding, you can go ahead and install the equipment. Your electrician will ensure that the necessary permits are obtained and that the work is inspected by your municipality (or Technical Safety BC) upon completion.
Once the project is complete, it's important to ensure that your electrician fills out a contractor installation form and submits it to you. Keep this document on-hand as you'll need to include it in your EV charger rebate application.
There are a few versions of the form. Download and complete the contractor installation form that's right for your project.
Step 10: Rebate application
Gather your documentation and submit your application for a rebate online.
Complete your application: EV charger rebates for apartment, condo and townhome complexes
Does your building have enough electricity to charge EVs?
Part of determining your charging options is finding out if your building has sufficient electrical capacity to accommodate the additional load from EV charging. By using BC Hydro metering data, an engineer and/or electrical contractor can perform a load calculation to determine if your electrical system has sufficient capacity.
If you need to upgrade your service, learn about new electrical connections and extensions and associated connection fees.
Before you start the installation process, consider these things: