Want the economic incentives for buying a Tesla in Virginia? Think again.

Obxcast

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Hello, my future fellow Cybertruck owners! I wanted to update you with a little information about incentives when buying a Tesla in the lovely Commonwealth of Virginia. First, full disclosure. I am not an economic expert, I do not work for Virginia Power, but I am a new Tesla owner, and this posting is based on that experience. I am highly educated in public policy and administration though. This post is long, so bear with me.

My wife and I purchased a new Tesla Model Y, standard range. How did we do this? Well, when Tesla lowered the cost of the Model Y to right around $39,000 she wanted to purchase one. I have my Cybertruck pre-order in, and she wanted to beat me to the land of Tesla ownership (and rub it in a little). Its a glorious place, not gonna lie. The car is freaking amazing, and its hard to believe that you can buy such a high end vehicle for that price. I have owned Land Rovers, etc., and this beats the luxury I have experienced by far. I am 6'7" tall and fit perfectly in the Model Y. Then, the Model Y went away, so we called a local Tesla dealership and they still had one on the lot. So we put a deposit on it and bought it the next day for the discounted price. It was brand new. What a deal!

When at the dealership, I asked to apply my referral number to the account so we could each get 1000 miles of supercharging. The awesome lady helping us out (and she was great) stated that we could apply my referral number to the account and be entered to win the free vehicle, but we could not get the 1000 supercharger miles. Why? Because, and this is what I was told, Virginia considers doing this as me acting as a salesman, and this is illegal in the state! What!? You mean I live in a state that is very Democratic and has a Governor that preaches about the environment and they not only offer jack for purchasing an electric vehicle, but they won't even allow you to use the own companies incentives? Let me put on my shocked face :cautious:.

So, on to Virginia powers incentives. They offer "off peak" rates for EV owners right? I mean their website talks about how progressive Dominion VA Power is for the environment and their commitment EV powered devices. Don't get me wrong, we have solar panels and got a great deal with VA Power. Also, I have always had VA Power and I love the company...they are pretty awesome. But, when I called to talk to them, I got transferred three times, and was finally told the following. They will allow me to shift from standard billing to on-peak and off-peak billing. If I do not like this I cannot switch back. So they are mailing me something and they want me to be sure its right for me before I make the switch.

I do not know the rates yet, and maybe its a good deal, but I find it a little circumspect. I will absolutely update everyone with more information here when I get the packet, but for now here is what they told me. I will be charged one rate for on-peak and another rate for off-peak. This is a semi-permanent change (more or less) and I have to have my meter switched out and such. I was under the impression they would just give us a discount for off-peak hours. Not the case. Here are the peak hours.

June-Sept: 7am-10pm (Monday-Friday)
Oct-May: 7am to 11am and also 5pm-9pm (Monday-Friday)
All other hours, as well as certain holidays, are off-peak

So...more to follow, but for now, I wanted to make my personal experience known, so as we all move forward in to Cybertruck land we know what to expect if we live in Virginia. At least for now. The on-peak and off-peak billing may be wonderful. Once I receive the packet I will update everyone.

All of this being said I am not complaining. We freaking love our Model Y. It is awesome and I feel kind of snobbish even asking for incentives because its so great, but there is nothing wrong with asking I suppose, especially when so many other states offer such great incentives. I honestly do not think I will ever buy another ICE vehicle again, incentives or not, and I am more excited about my Cybertruck now.
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I have a meter that communicates every 15 min or something and I get charged hourly spot prices. If I had continued to use appliances and everything else electric just like most other people it would get more expensive for me than before. So going to a more granular pricing means you have to use your head a little more or have automation systems that delay washing, charging etc to off-peak hours (somewhat inbuilt in Tesla). My heatpump/heating system mostly charges the hot water tank in off-peak hours for example (connected to Nordpool power exchange). I start heating a bit early for the morning and evening too (plus have extra insulation in the house). Hot water and heating are of course the two big ones in Northern Europe. Charging two Teslas off-peak in addition to simple other measures would make more granular pricing worth it to most here I would think (until everyone has smart homes and charges their EVs all night and you also still have to do it then, but then there would be less dramatic peaking overall and maybe lower prices in average too).

Seems even simpler to work with defined periods of peak prices like that, but it all depends on the price difference and your lifestyle I guess. And if it’s not too much of a hassle to work around peak periods like that (it’s not *very* much incentive (apart from every January-february 😊) because of costs here but I happened to think it was fun at a time).
 
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DarinCT

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Thanks for sharing. The last time I lived in Virginia, there were very few usury laws i.e. laws that protect the individual or consumer. (I find this ironic because usury laws were religious in origin and the religious influences and institutions were otherwise active at the time.) I don't say this to diss Virginia, it was the first time I experienced four seasons, the bay/beach life was great, and was able to see the rest of the seaboard because of it. I am saying I can relate. I have experienced other utilities - power and otherwise (looking at you cable company) - that gouged the customer because they could. We now have an employee owned power company and everything about it has been an abnormally pleasant experience.

Congrats on your Y and hope the time-of-day rates work out for you.
 
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Obxcast

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I have a meter that communicates every 15 min or something and I get charged hourly spot prices. If I had continued to use appliances and everything else electric just like most other people it would get more expensive for me than before. So going to a more granular pricing means you have to use your head a little more or have automation systems that delay washing, charging etc to off-peak hours (somewhat inbuilt in Tesla). My heatpump/heating system mostly charges the hot water tank in off-peak hours for example (connected to Nordpool power exchange). I start heating a bit early for the morning and evening too (plus have extra insulation in the house). Hot water and heating is of course the two big ones in Northern Europe. Charging two Teslas off-peak in addition to simple other measures would make more granular pricing worth it to most here I would think (until everyone has smart homes and charges their EVs all night and you also still have to do it then, but then there would be less dramatic peaking overall and maybe lower prices in average too).

Seems even simpler to work with defined periods of peak prices like that, but it all depends on the price difference and your lifestyle I guess.
Great points thank you!!
 

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I have a meter that communicates every 15 min or something and I get charged hourly spot prices. If I had continued to use appliances and everything else electric just like most other people it would get more expensive for me than before. So going to a more granular pricing means you have to use your head a little more or have automation systems that delay washing, charging etc to off-peak hours (somewhat inbuilt in Tesla). My heatpump/heating system mostly charges the hot water tank in off-peak hours for example (connected to Nordpool power exchange). I start heating a bit early for the morning and evening too (plus have extra insulation in the house). Hot water and heating are of course the two big ones in Northern Europe. Charging two Teslas off-peak in addition to simple other measures would make more granular pricing worth it to most here I would think (until everyone has smart homes and charges their EVs all night and you also still have to do it then, but then there would be less dramatic peaking overall and maybe lower prices in average too).

Seems even simpler to work with defined periods of peak prices like that, but it all depends on the price difference and your lifestyle I guess. And if it’s not too much of a hassle to work around peak periods like that (it’s not *very* much incentive (apart from every January-february 😊) because of costs here but I happened to think it was fun at a time).
This sounds awful. Compared to the lifestyles we enjoy in middle America, being charged out the butt for the privilege of heating your home during the day is archaic and backwards. If this is the trend moving forward with “on peak, off peak” energy billing count me out. To the OP, keep your regular meter man, especially if your rates are reasonable.
 
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Obxcast

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This sounds awful. Compared to the lifestyles we enjoy in middle America, being charged out the butt for the privilege of heating your home during the day is archaic and backwards. If this is the trend moving forward with “on peak, off peak” energy billing count me out. To the OP, keep your regular meter man, especially if your rates are reasonable.
I’ll probably take that advice lol. I’m going to update the post when I get more information. The only good thing is our rates are about half of what I see youtubers and what they pay in say California.
 

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LoPro

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This sounds awful. Compared to the lifestyles we enjoy in middle America, being charged out the butt for the privilege of heating your home during the day is archaic and backwards. If this is the trend moving forward with “on peak, off peak” energy billing count me out. To the OP, keep your regular meter man, especially if your rates are reasonable.
Sorry, I wasn’t totally clear. And yes it sounded like DDR/Eastern Germany at a point there 😂 Which is far from the case.

This isn’t as permanent as for OP. I can still choose the monthly price contract or fixed 6 months, 12 months, etc etc. etc. Too many confusing types of contracts really. The meter was changed regardless 5 years ago for purposes of national power security and fine adjustment of hydropower production and our grid efficiency. I have chosen hourly spot where “the market decides” myself because... I used to think it was fun to automate and try to “beat” the system... and now it just works and I don’t care. It’s always warm when we’re home and we shower as much as we like. Electricity isn’t very expensive at all on average here. But we do export a lot which is priced on the Nordpool power exchange for Europe. And spot price (as given on the Nordpool exchange) is cheaper on average in the really long term than any other pricing (based on the same power exchange). Just like in the case of mortgages etc. And I don’t have to keep an eye on my electricity providers changing (tricky) future period pricing (and their averaging of profits).

I don’t even see the bill anymore, I have some systems that automatically adjust to predicted spot prices (and our Tesla that charges in the night), and I don’t spend any time worrying about peak or not peak or in fact electricity at all.

It was more an anecdote and rather a warning about peak hours and not a recommendation at all, because as I say it all works really different across borders not to mention the Atlantic Ocean. This was another kind of fixed peak periods too and unknown pricing.

Ultimately though the point of incentivizing people to average/flatten power usage across 24hrs, and maybe even some power saving when not strictly necessary, is to lower pressure on the systems and get lower costs for all and less effects on nature because production doesn’t have to be expanded all the time.
 
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Obxcast

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LoPro

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Seems many states in the US are very progressive when it comes to bills like this and EV incentives in general, and I understand EV sales are exploding from the statistics. Probably much more important to people than different power contracts.

Are these incentives usually something you deduct on yearly tax returns and never instant when buying? Haven’t really thought about what the bills which are talked about mean in those terms.

I guess there isnt a competition between the states because incentives depend on where you live (and where you will use the car most)?
 
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Obxcast

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Seems many states in the US are very progressive when it comes to bills like this and EV incentives in general, and I understand EV sales are exploding from the statistics. Probably much more important to people than different power contracts.

Are these incentives usually something you deduct on yearly tax returns and never instant when buying? Haven’t really thought about what the bills which are talked about mean in those terms.

I guess there isnt a competition between the states because incentives depend on where you live (and where you will use the car most)?
Seems that way. From what I understand Federal tax incentives do not apply to Tesla anymore (at this time anyhow) but some other EVs can get it depending on how many they have sold. But, it’s only applied to tax liability. For our solar panels we actually got cash back. As for state by state I don’t know as I’d have to rely on their webpages but I’m VA we don’t have anything.
 

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This sounds awful. Compared to the lifestyles we enjoy in middle America, being charged out the butt for the privilege of heating your home during the day...
...Is more appropriate once you have more power usage you can shift around. But not until then.

A car charger is at minimum, like leaving a space heater on. A big one is like running the whole-house AC unit for hours without it cycling off. The Cybertruck will shift your usage massively.

-Crissa
 
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Obxcast

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Seems many states in the US are very progressive when it comes to bills like this and EV incentives in general, and I understand EV sales are exploding from the statistics. Probably much more important to people than different power contracts.

Are these incentives usually something you deduct on yearly tax returns and never instant when buying? Haven’t really thought about what the bills which are talked about mean in those terms.

I guess there isnt a competition between the states because incentives depend on where you live (and where you will use the car most)?
i would think so for sure. I agree with that completely. State sovereignty plays a role im sure, but it would be great to see states combining efforts in some way. Some states have great incentives.
 
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Obxcast

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...Is more appropriate once you have more power usage you can shift around. But not until then.

A car charger is at minimum, like leaving a space heater on. A big one is like running the whole-house AC unit for hours without it cycling off. The Cybertruck will shift your usage massively.

-Crissa
Thank you! Yes, that’s my plan. Im going to look at it again after I get the details. It’s good to know the comparison you made because that makes sense.
 
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Obxcast

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Thanks for sharing. The last time I lived in Virginia, there were very few usury laws i.e. laws that protect the individual or consumer. (I find this ironic because usury laws were religious in origin and the religious influences and institutions were otherwise active at the time.) I don't say this to diss Virginia, it was the first time I experienced four seasons, the bay/beach life was great, and was able to see the rest of the seaboard because of it. I am saying I can relate. I have experienced other utilities - power and otherwise (looking at you cable company) - that gouged the customer because they could. We now have an employee owned power company and everything about it has been an abnormally pleasant experience.

Congrats on your Y and hope the time-of-day rates work out for you.
Thank you for the input! We love this car and I haven’t seen much that does it justice in reviews. I mean there are great reviews, but seeing it in person is different. That’s why I’m so excited about the Cybertruck now. I’m sure in person it’s going to be so much better.
 
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