Can You Still Own an Electric Vehicle If You Live In an Apartment?

So, you want to buy an electric vehicle. Saving money on gas and doing your part for the environment sound like a winning combination. There’s only one problem: you live in an apartment or condo.

Now, if you live somewhere like California where electric vehicle infrastructure is fairly solid, this might not be an issue at all. While it might be a bit of a pain to have to drive to a charging station every time you need to charge, it’s not so bad as long as the station isn’t far away. For those of you who don’t have a nearby charging station, however, your inability to charge at home could mean the difference between getting and not getting an electric vehicle.

All isn’t lost, though. There are ways you can have an electric vehicle even if you live in an apartment building or complex. It’ll just require some work on your part.

Ask your landlord to install a charging station

This might seem like a long shot to some, but successfully convincing your landlord to put in a charging station for you to use might be easier than you think. You can make a stronger case if you could find out whether anyone else in your building would benefit from a charging station — then, sell the landlord on the idea that it’d benefit multiple tenants and improve the landlord’s reputation among prospective tenants.

If that fails, keep in mind that some states, including California, have enacted legislation requiring the owner of an apartment or condo building to allow tenants to install a charging station, so long as it’s done on the tenant’s dime and meets certain conditions.

Charge elsewhere

If your work has charging stations (or your employer is willing to install some) or your neighborhood is home to one or more charging stations (don’t forget about charging spots located in store parking lots), an electric vehicle might be feasible. Try using an app to locate all the charging stations in your area, and make sure to top up every time the opportunity arises to avoid running out of juice.

Consider a hybrid or range-extended electric vehicle

This might not be welcome news for those who were planning to get a fully electric vehicle, but if charging overnight isn’t going to be an option for you, a hybrid or range-extended electric vehicle (like the Chevy Volt) could take some of the stress out of not having easy access to a charging station.

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