Submetering Electric Vehicles in Apartments and Condos

Energy Partner Network Member and Managing Partner of Upstarter Energy, Chris Kaiser, discusses Submetering Electric Vehicles in Apartments and Condos.

EV Infrastructure in Parking Decks

We recently looked at installing EV infrastructure in a condo building parking deck and as we were leaving the resident asked us: “What about the meter?” She had been told that if she wanted to install an EV charging station she would have to have it submetered, but she was given no further guidance from the HOA. Did that mean by the local utility (Georgia Power), or with a simple digital submeter, or with a web based digital submeter, or what about a networked EV charger that also could meter energy? And once it was submetered who was going to bill for the energy consumed? I don’t think most HOAs and Apartment management companies know the answer or even how to frame the question!

As we were leaving the front desk attendant took us to look at an existing EV installation that had been done about 6 years prior. You can see from the image below that they used a simple digital sub-meter that displayed the energy consumed…but who was reading it and then billing the resident? Nobody knew anything about that installation.

The second picture shows the EV electrical infrastructure from the EV electrical panel to the assigned residents parking spot. They used a NEMA 14-15 receptacle which is great, but how do you prevent the EV charging station from being stolen?

There are several approaches to this problem and below are some of the most common we have found:

  • Community installs Community EV charging equipment and infrastructure and EV residents pay a flat monthly fee that covers some or all of the electricity cost that the community pays for (no submetering)
  • Community installs EV charging equipment and infrastructure that community owns at Assigned EV charging spaces. EV residents pay a flat monthly fee that covers electricity cost and EV equipment and infrastructure (no submetering)
  • EV resident pays for EV charging equipment and infrastructure to assigned parking space. Community installs submetering equipment and billing solution to charge the EV resident for electricity they consume.
  • EV resident pays for EV charging equipment (networked and submetered) and infrastructure to assigned parking space. Community ensures adequate space and access to electrical panels. An example of this solution can be seen here from ChargePoint with their CPF50 solution. In this option, the network solution handles all billing.

We then built the below Excel table with some of the following assumptions and additional notes:

  • The average driver drives 7,000 miles per year (SWAG)
  • The second image shows what the costs would be like if half the drivers were Uber/Lyft/etc drivers driving 30,000 miles per year (blended average of 18.5k miles per year)
  • The “Miles/kWh” metric is specific to different types of EVs. More efficient EVs will have higher miles/kWh. We assumed “3”. You can find the different values from this link (and calculating using their “X kWh/100 mi” metric, which we think is kind of silly)
  • Cost per electricity is 12 cents/kWh and there are 10 EV drivers
  • For Option 3 and 4 (networked and/or sub-metered) adequate cell or wifi signal exists to get the data to the cloud. We threw in $500 for a wifi booster
  • We aren’t assuming any additional electrical work needed to add additional electrical panels. If that’s needed, it would be needed across all solutions (with the exception possibly of Option 1).
  • Monthly fees for Options 1 and 4 are based on discussions with others who have experience in the space. Monthly fees for Option 2 and 3 are arbitrarily chosen by us.
  • Option 3 – the sub-metered option doesn’t really exist in a nice commercial package that we have found ( possibly with the exception of the option from Koben Systems where we got the image at the top of the post). It would be easy to come up with the hardware solution by using technology from a provider like Accuenergy; however, the challenge becomes how to easily bill the resident for energy consumed without a bunch of people (who cost money) doing the work.
  • Any type of community charging should probably require some type of keyed access (physical key or card or phone) otherwise a resident or guest who hasn’t paid a fee can charge for free. Another issue with community charging is how to ensure that residents don’t hog the chargers.

Table 1: Submetering options where average driver drives 7,000 miles per year

Table 2: Submetering options where average driver drives 18,500 miles per year. IE: Half are rideshare drivers driving 30,000 miles per year and half drive 7,000 miles per year

As you can see from the above two tables, Options 1 and 2 could end up being quite costly from the Apartment/HOA viewpoint if the drivers drive a lot of miles per year or if the Monthly fee is not chosen right. Even for these scenarios, we’d recommend a simple submeter that someone in maintenance can read and keep track of to ensure the monthly fee is fair and covering most of the electricity costs. However, this wouldn’t allow any data on individual drivers (ie, to see if a rideshare driver is taking advantage of the system).

It’s a complicated topic. If you own or operate an Apartment complex or work with an HOA, contact Upstarter Energy for help!

Author: Chris Kaiser

Energy Partner Network and The Energy Professionals Association Team Up

TEPA members benefit from EPN’s proprietary online energy marketplace

NEW YORK—Energy Partner Network (EPN) and The Energy Professionals Association (TEPA) announced today that they have joined forces to offer TEPA members exclusive EPN pricing, sponsorship opportunities and access to industry think tank sessions.

“This is truly a win-win situation,” said Klaudet Ristovski, Chief Revenue Officer for Energy Partner Network. “TEPA is a respected member of the energy community and its participation in our digital ecosystem makes us even stronger. EPN provides the vehicle to transfigure how all areas of the energy industry connect, and TEPA offers a large broker and supplier network.”

Ristovski continued, “TEPA members provide two key elements required to rapidly bring energy efficiency projects and products to market: a vast indirect sales channel and suppliers with on-bill financing capabilities.”

Shannon McGriff, Executive Director of The Energy Professionals Association, said, “We’re excited to join EPN, take advantage of the features and benefits it provides and offer our members an early mover’s advantage. TEPA members service over 70 percent of commercial and residential consumers in deregulated energy markets across the country. EPN is the platform to facilitate doing business virtually.”

Energy Partner Network is a place where industry innovators differentiate their product offerings and make transactions happen. Its energy directory includes thousands of sustainable companies in more than 75 categories and proprietary tools providing the most comprehensive way to build partnerships and brand equity in the industry.

TEPA is made up of more than 200 member companies and thousands of energy market professionals, including energy aggregators, brokers, consultants, suppliers and affiliated companies. For 15 years, it has provided a neutral forum for energy professionals to network, gain knowledge and participate in regulatory and legislative efforts.

Visit Energy Partner Network’s website to become a member or to learn more.  For more information or to join The Energy Professionals Association, visit TEPA’s website and its Virtual Trade Show Booth.

See this news release online.

Energy Partner Network Launches Digital Ecosystem for Clean Energy Industry

Tap into the Most Extensive Communication Platform of Its Kind

NEW YORK—Energy Partner Network is proud to unveil its innovative platform—a virtual meeting place where organizations in the clean energy marketplace can build an ecosystem of strategic partners while growing their businesses in a smart, cost-effective and convenient way.

Energy Partner Network brings together all segments of the energy arena to promote the important and pressing goal of achieving a carbon-free future. The site is a repository of thousands of companies in more than 75 categories, providing users with the most efficient way to search for industry opportunities.

“This groundbreaking platform is transforming how those of us in energy-related industries collaborate and innovate,” said Energy Partner Network Chief Revenue Officer Klaudet Ristovski. “At a time when the need for social distancing makes it more important than ever to provide full-service, virtual networking opportunities, we are excited to be at the forefront.”

In addition to accessing thousands of potential partners, this feature-rich platform provides its members:

  • Fully remote, online interactivity to save time and money
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Energy Partner Network’s philosophy is inclusive, allowing businesses of all sizes and stages to form connections that accelerate the implementation of sustainable products and services. Your business success is built on partnerships with industry experts, associations, established vendors and service providers. Energy Partner Network’s sophisticated backend operations focus on world-class service, leading digital marketing strategies and growth.

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About Energy Partner Network

Energy Partner Network is a robust, proprietary online tool powerful enough to connect companies of all sizes—virtually. Members can leverage access to decision makers, job seekers, RFP opportunities, trade show leads and search engine exposure. Energy Partner Network believes the only path to a cleaner future is by building an interconnected ecosystem of partners, peers and lawmakers who can drive ideas to implementation. The future of clean energy starts here. Learn more about Energy Partner Network.

See this news release online.

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