‘Garage Orphans’ Scramble for Charging While Multi-Unit Buildings Lag on Installations

With electric vehicles beginning to surge, some owners who live in apartments or condominiums are struggling with their status as “garage orphans” as they navigate unexpected obstacles to charging their cars at home.

Some of the most obvious barriers to home charging in multi-family buildings are being cleared away, with jurisdictions like Ontario making it illegal, for example, for condo boards to refuse EV charger installations without good reason. But many buildings are still making it tough for owners to uphold the basic ‘ABC’ of electric car ownership—Always Be Charging.

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“It’s absolutely possible to get charging infrastructure caught up, but it requires some effort,” Ian Klesmer, director of strategy and grants at The Atmospheric Fund, told CBC News. And until that happens, the national broadcaster says, some EV owners will be known as “garage orphans” because they “don’t have driveways, designated parking spots, or easy access to private charging options.”

More Cost-Effective Charging

CBC tells the story of Mathieu Gosbee, who’d paid $400 to install a Level 2 charger on his detached home in Toronto but couldn’t bring it along when he moved to a condo. The condo board said the installation would take a year and cost $5,000 to $10,000.

But particularly with federal funding available and some provinces onboard, the installation can and should cost much less: Residential charging “can certainly be done in a more cost-effective way, because there are incentives to help make it less expensive,” Klesmer said.

“I want to have the convenience of charging at home—it’s part of the reason I bought my car

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