Money Moral Dilemma: Should I ask for money if people charge their electric cars when they visit?

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  • Yes definitely, just tell them gently, before they start charging that with energy costs are you’ll have to charge them. If you’ve got a smart meter you’ll get a fair idea of how much energy they’ve used. 
  • jonny7227
    jonny7227 Posts: 19 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    edited 7 November 2023 at 10:34PM
    We had a similar issue only we have solar panels and I think the assumption was charging the car would cost us nowt using the electricity off the panels. 
    However, we use the solar power to heat our hot water so had to fire up the central heating boiler to replace the missing energy.
  • No of course not. If they are visiting you for dinner will you be charging them for the food also? They are your family and friends. If they offer to pay then you may wish to accept but charging them is mean unless they are visiting you solely to charge up their cars.
  • Groom
    Groom Posts: 55 Forumite
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    Most EV now have a good range, so unless your visitors have travelled a long way to visit and are staying with you, there shouldn't be any need for them to have to charge their vehicle. It seems a cheek if they only live a few miles away and expect to use your electricity. You say you don't have an electric car - have you had an electric point fitted? If not, the answer is a simple, "Sorry I don't have the correct power point." 
  • While we all shouldn't walk around with rule books boundaries need to be set.
    If they are trusted family and friends and you visit each other regularly each party should offer to pay/compensate for charging their car.
    However, if they drop by hoping to charge for free that is unacceptable.
    Whatever you decide don't make yourself uncomfortable to please others.
  • Absolutely ask them for a contribution! In fact, it's disgusting that they don't immediately offer as soon as they ask you if they can plug their car in. 

    It's one thing to visit someone's house and ask if they mind if you put your phone on charge - we all do it and it costs next to nothing in terms of electricity use. But to ask if they can charge their car for free??!!

    I'd tell them to get stuffed. Or say, "Yes, if you go down the road to the petrol station and bring me a gallon can of unleaded back."
    You seem like a lovely family member and friend who gives a lot of consideration to the state of the charging infrastructure in certain regions in the UK...

    Charging at someone's home without a dedicated EV charge point means charging via a 3-pin plug that is like 2-3kW power (minus like 20% loss due to inefficiency). So if your guests only visit for a few hours that is not all that much (unless they come every week). For them, it might make the difference between making it home or having to put in an extra charge stop on the way back. Obviously it also depends on your and their economic situation and other circumstances. 

    We have an EV and if we drive to see family 350 miles away this means several charge stops on the way and a long journey. If they are financially well off and make a fuss about a night of charging at 3kW I'd reconsider visiting them. But I guess people would feel similarly if family or friends charged them for staying the night, taking an electric shower and providing drinks/food at home.
  • Are they round most evenings   ::D

    Ask them to put a couple of gallons in your car while they're charging theirs.....
  • elliotj
    elliotj Posts: 73 Forumite
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    Groom said:You say you don't have an electric car - have you had an electric point fitted? If not, the answer is a simple, "Sorry I don't have the correct power point." 
    Almost all EVs come with what is called a "granny charger" in the boot. Its called that as its useful for charging at your grannys house.

    This will plug into any 3pin socket, so no special powerpoint required.

    They are slow though, as they only draw 2.3kw...  about the same amount as an electric heater.

    If after a long trip someone needed the charge, even at the full market price cap of 28p per kWh it would cost 65p per hour, so £7.80 for 12hrs use. Give them £10 for an overnight charge and it more than covers the usage!
  • Herzlos
    Herzlos Posts: 14,685 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    If they are visiting me, then I'm unlikely to grudge them £10 here or there.

    I'd probably just insist they bought lunch next time we were out, rather than giving me cash if they offered.
  • elliotj
    elliotj Posts: 73 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    A quick Google says it would cost £10-£20 which is a sizable amount.
    £7.80 for 12hrs usage at the price cap.

    28p x 2.3kw x 12hrs
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