The world is quickly moving toward a future of sustainable transportation, and it’s getting there in an electric vehicle. Fortunately, the road to cleaner mobility has never been smoother — or more affordable.
Businesses nationwide that install charging stations to serve the growing number of EV drivers can find deep pools of potential funding through utility rebates and tax credits. When capitalized on, these incentives can cover a significant portion of your investment and, in some cases, result in getting EV charging stations for free.
Big savings are there for the taking — you just need to know where to look.
“Most of us think about discounts as, you go into a store and it’s 15 percent off some item. This is a whole different level of value. We’re talking 75 percent off the cost of the project in some cases,” says Nick Lalli, one of our resident rebate experts here at EVBox North America.
Nick Lalli Senior Business Development Manager, Utilities North America
Nick, a self-described gearhead, baseball fan and lifelong New Yorker, helps buyers use government and utility incentives to drive down the cost of installing charging stations. After becoming fascinated with the EV market in college, Nick joined EVBox in 2015 to help a wider audience engage with the technology and reap the benefits.
“A lot of the benefits of EVs and EV charging can be very complex,” he says. “Making it easy for people to understand is very gratifying to me.”
When it comes to maximizing tax credits and rebates for EV charging, Nick says the incentives available right now are too big to be an afterthought. It’s important to factor them into your purchase decision from the start.
Where do you get these incentives, and how do you use them? Here are Nick’s top tips:
1. Understand the two main types of incentives: Tax credits, which include federal and state credits, and rebates offered by your utility or other local entity.
Tax credits result in savings when you file your federal or state taxes. With rebates, “installation can’t happen until the rebates have been approved,” Nick advises. After you demonstrate that the charging stations are up and running, you get your rebate check in the mail.
2. The federal tax credit is a big one, expiring in 2021.
Some states, but not all, offer tax credits for EV charging. But no matter where you live in the US, your purchase of charging stations is eligible for a federal tax credit of 30 percent of your project costs, up to $30,000 for commercial and public projects. You need to move fast to take advantage: the credit applies to chargers installed this year and expires December 31, 2021.
3. Rebates can slash your costs even more!
In many states, utilities and other local entities offer rebates when you install EV charging stations at workplaces, malls, apartment complexes, parking lots, and in many other commercial or public settings. More local programs are in the works, as states and utilities seek to lower carbon emissions by making it easier for EV drivers to stay charged up.
“Rebate programs are still driving with a lot of momentum,” Nick says. In most cases, to qualify, you’ll need to buy charging stations that meet certain specifications for network connectivity (like the EVBox Iqon) and are installed in an area where the station(s) can service multiple vehicles.
4. You can stack incentives to cover nearly all of your project costs.
By combining various tax credits with state and local rebates, incentives can often cover 80 percent or more of the cost of investing in EV charging stations for your facility, Nick says.
A facility manager who purchases Iqon, EVBox’s next-gen Level 2 charging station, is eligible for $8,000 per unit from Charge Ready NY — enough to cover the cost of the station itself, as well as any initial network subscription fees. She can stack that $8,000 with a rebate from her local utility that covers “make-ready” electrical upgrades at the installation site. “By combining these two incentives, many locations across NY can qualify for a full funded EV charging project,” Nick says.
5. Choose your EV charging stations carefully to maximize savings.
Some brands play better with incentives than others. To maximize credits and rebates, it’s important to choose a charging station that meets or exceeds the requirements of government and utility incentive programs — like Iqon.
Nick says three key elements make EVBox Iqon attractive to rebate programs:
• Affordable price point
• Flexibility (allows owners to switch network providers anytime) • Utility connectivity (allows utilities to collect data and monitor activity).
Now you know the basics — but the path to maximizing incentives for EV charging can still be a daunting one. That’s why we have a team of EVBoxers (all experts like Nick) ready to help you understand exactly which incentives are available in your area and how to take full advantage of them. You’ll get all the help you need to correctly fill out your rebate applications and successfully qualify for EV incentive funding.
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