Nearly half of UK homes unsuitable for electric cars

From 2030 no new petrol or diesel cars will be sold in the UK but, according to new Lloyds Bank research, more than two fifths (44%) of UK homes are unsuitable for electric vehicle ownership. 

However, this year has seen Battery Electric Vehicle registrations up 38%, in the last 12 months.

Still, those without garages, driveways or dedicated parking may see themselves as excluded from making the move to driving more sustainably, with no obvious place for that vital electric car charging point.  

Lloyds Bank mortgage data shows that around 30% of people applying for a mortgage do not have a garage or space for a car.  While the government has recently brought in new laws for housebuilders – which require them to ensure any new-build homes, workplaces and supermarkets have an electric charging point installed – the data does suggest that many people will remain unable to charge an electric vehicle at their place of residence. 

Perhaps unsurprisingly therefore, homeowners with a private driveway are the most positive about their homes’ suitability for a greener vehicle, with over half (55%) confident they would be able to make provision to charge an electric car. 

Away from the home, the charging infrastructure in the UK is improving, with the latest data showing there are over 36,000 charging points at over 21,000 locations across the UK. However, many rural areas remain charging blackspots.

Nick Williams, Transport Director at Lloyds Bank, said: “The growth we have seen in electric vehicle registrations is encouraging but, with many in the UK living in properties where installing a home charging port isn’t a viable option, having a reliable charging infrastructure is absolutely vital for the UK’s transition to net zero.

“The government has made positive steps by ensuring new build homes are fully equipped to have charging facilities, but many will have to continue to rely on charging an electric vehicle somewhere other than at home. This means there remains a need for focused investment in public charging points in residential  – and particularly rural – areas.

“We’ll only make real progress in becoming a nation of sustainable drivers if we don’t leave anyone behind – no matter where they live in the country or their home set-up.” 

Regional views

There are significant regional variations in views on charging infrastructure.

While the large proportion of people living in flats in London remains a charging challenge, residents of the capital tend to believe that charging coverage is sufficient (54%). In comparison, only a fifth (22%) of those living in the Midlands agree this is the case. Nationally, less than a third (30%) of people have a positive view on the availability of charging points.

Cost of living

The cost of living crisis is impacting many people’s driving decisions.  Just under half (48%) of Brits are now driving less because of fuel costs, with three in 10 (30%) saying they have been forced to postpone buying their next vehicle, by an average of two years. For electric vehicles, this could mean future adoption may slow, as a fifth (18%) say they are now less likely to buy one, due to cost of living challenges.

Furthermore, the price of hardware and installation will likely be a consideration when it comes to installing a charging port for home use, at an average price of around £1,000.

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