Technology

Mandatory electric car charging points proposed for new homes

16 July 2019 | By Denise Chevin

England will be the first country in the world to introduce mandatory electric car charging points for new-build homes.

In a consultation published this week, the government is proposing to create a new part to the Building Regulations requiring electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure in new buildings and buildings undergoing material change of use and major renovation.

If the planned changes to Building Regulations are approved, it would force homebuilders to install charging points at a cost of nearly £1,000 so potential owners will be able to easily charge their plug-in hybrids and electric cars at home.

The drive towards EVs comes as the UK government sets out to meet stringent targets for air quality and pollution caused by internal combustion engine emissions. From 2040, the £1.5 billion Road to Zero strategy will see the sale of all new cars without electrification banned.

In the new consultation the government is proposing a raft of changes:

  • Residential buildings: Every new residential building with an associated car parking space to have a charge point. This requirement applies to buildings undergoing a material change of use to create a dwelling. The government proposes requiring every residential building undergoing major renovation with more than 10 car parking spaces to have one charge point and cable routes for electric vehicle charge points in every car parking space.
  • New non-residential buildings: Every new non-residential building and every non-residential building undergoing a major renovation with more than 10 car parking spaces have one charge point and cable routes for an electric vehicle for one in five spaces.
  • Existing non-residential buildings: A requirement of at least one charge point in existing non-residential buildings with more than 20 car parking spaces, applicable from 2025.

The government has also set out this week that it wants to see all newly installed rapid and higher powered charge points provide debit or credit card payment by spring 2020.

Transport secretary Chris Grayling said: “With record levels of ultra-low emission vehicles on our roads, it is clear there is an appetite for cleaner, greener transport.

“Home charging provides the most convenient and low-cost option for consumers – you can simply plug your car in to charge overnight as you would a mobile phone.”

“The government has already taken steps to ensure that existing homes are electric vehicle ready by providing up to £500 off the costs of installing a charge point at home.

“Having supported the installation of almost 100,000 domestic charge points through grant support schemes, the government has also announced that it is consulting on requirements that all new private charge points use ‘smart’ technology.

“This means an electric vehicle would charge at different times of the day in response to signals, such as electricity tariff information. This would encourage off-peak charging, keeping costs down for consumers.”

The  AA found that 80% of drivers cited the lack of charging points for EVs as a sticking point in their adoption of electric vehicles.

The consultation is open until October 7 and can be found here.

Image: Davidschunack/Dreamstime.com