Slowly but surely, the world is waking up to the global climate emergency. One way the government is attempting to cut the UK’s carbon emissions is to offer motorists a grant to buy an electric vehicle.
This means that if you’re on the hunt for a new car, as well as doing your bit to save the planet, you may qualify for help towards the cost. Here’s what you need to know.
What are the benefits of electric vehicles?
Putting aside the huge environmental benefits, perhaps the biggest advantage of owning an electric vehicle is the fact they’re cheaper to run than traditional cars.
While it can be difficult to pinpoint the exact difference in running costs, as this will vary depending on the model, make and specification of the vehicle, according to Vanarama, running costs of a typical electric vehicle can be up to 58% cheaper than a petrol equivalent.
In addition to this, electric cars generally require less maintenance than cars with internal combustion engines.
Other benefits of electric cars include the fact that they attract low (or zero) Vehicle Excise Duty. They can also dodge the congestion zone charges found in some areas of the UK.
A final perk is that electric cars generally hold their value better than their petrol counterparts.
Can you get a grant to buy an electric vehicle?
To persuade the public to switch to electric cars, the government now offers grants towards the cost of electric vehicles. Grants apply to the following types of vehicles:
- Small vans
- Large vans
The total grant available will depend on the type of vehicle you buy. The maximum grant for an electric car is £2,500.
A full list of qualifying vehicles, including models, can be found on the gov.uk website.
What about grants towards the cost of car chargers?
To accelerate the switch to electric cars, the government recently announced that all new homes and buildings in England will be built with electric vehicle charging points from 2022. It’s hoped the move will lead to up to 145,000 extra charging points being installed.
To further support the use of charging points, the government now offers grants of up to 75% towards the cost of installing one. Dubbed the ‘Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme’, those eligible can bag themselves up to £350 (including VAT) towards the cost of installing a charger at home. Further information about this scheme can be found on the gov.uk website.
Why is it a good time to buy an electric vehicle?
Aside from helping the planet, if you switch to an electric vehicle now, you may qualify for a juicy grant.
Grants such as these won’t last forever. This is the reason why many are suggesting now is the perfect time to make the switch. This opinion is echoed by Bill Scotney, commercial director at Moneybarn. He explains, “If you’re thinking of switching to an electric car, there’s never been a better time. More models are coming to the market, and now the latest news is that all new build homes will require EV charging stations.”
Scotney goes on to explain the cost benefits of opting for an electric vehicle. “Essentially, the main reason to switch to an electric car is that they are better for the environment, but they also have lower running costs and are eligible for a government grant.
He goes on, “You can currently get a discount on plug-in vehicles from the government if you buy new, up to a maximum of 35% of the price. You don’t need to do anything to claim it, the dealership will automatically apply it.”
Are you interested in joining the electric vehicle revolution? See two electric vehicle stocks to buy and hold for the next decade.
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