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Should Your Trade Business Get An Electric Van?

Rhino Trade Insurance 11 February 2024

In the trades industry, staying ahead of the game is crucial for the success of your business. With environmental concerns on the rise and advancements in technology reshaping various sectors, the question of whether your trade business should invest in an electric van in 2024 is more relevant than ever.

The Electric Revolution

Over the past few years, there has been a noticeable shift towards sustainability in various industries, and transport is no exception. The push for greener alternatives has given rise to electric vehicles (EVs), which are becoming increasingly popular among consumers and businesses alike.

The Rise of Electric Vans

One significant development in the electric vehicle market is the emergence of electric vans - you may have spotted delivery drivers now using EVs. These eco-friendly alternatives offer several advantages over their traditional counterparts, making them an enticing option for tradesmen and women in the UK.

Advantages of Electric Vans for Trades Businesses

  1. Environmental Impact

One of the primary reasons businesses are considering electric vans is their reduced environmental impact. With the UK government's commitment to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, adopting electric vehicles aligns with the broader goal of reducing climate change.

Electric vans produce fewer carbon emissions compared to diesel or petrol, contributing to cleaner air and a healthier environment. This shift towards sustainability can also enhance your business's reputation as an environmentally responsible one, potentially attracting more customers.

  1. Cost Savings

While the initial investment in an electric van may seem higher than that of a traditional vehicle, the long-term cost savings can outweigh the upfront expenses.

  •  Fuel Costs

Electricity tends to be more cost-effective than petrol or diesel, resulting in lower fuel expenses. With the continuous improvement in charging infrastructure and the availability of government incentives, the cost of operating an electric van is becoming more competitive.

  •  Maintenance

Electric vehicles generally have fewer moving parts than traditional vehicles, translating to lower maintenance costs. The absence of complex components such as exhaust systems and fewer oil-related issues contributes to reduced servicing expenses over the vehicle's lifespan.

  1. Government Incentives

To encourage electric vehicles, the UK government has implemented various incentives that can significantly benefit your trade business.

  •  Plug-in Grant

The Plug-in Grant provides a discount on the purchase price of eligible electric vans, making them more affordable for businesses. Understanding what the eligibility criteria and application process for this grant can help you maximise your savings.

  •  Tax Benefits

Electric vehicles often qualify for tax benefits, including reduced vehicle tax and favourable allowances. These financial incentives can contribute to your business's overall profitability.

  1. Access to Low-Emission Zones

Many UK cities are implementing low-emission zones to address air quality issues. Electric vehicles, including vans, are typically exempt or subject to lower charges in these zones. By investing in an electric van, your business gains unrestricted access to areas where traditional vehicles may face restrictions or additional costs.

  1. Future-Proofing Your Business

As the auto industry continues to transition towards electric vehicles, investing in an electric van can future-proof your trade business. Adapting to changing trends and consumer preferences positions your business for long-term success and sustainability.

What To Consider Before Switching

While the advantages of electric vans are obvious, it's essential to carefully evaluate whether they align with the precise needs and circumstances of your trade business. Consider the following factors before making the switch to electric vehicles:

  1. Range and Charging Infrastructure

Electric vans have made significant strides in extending their range, but it's crucial to assess whether the current capabilities meet your business requirements. Additionally, consider the availability and accessibility of charging infrastructure in your operational areas. Plan your routes and ensure that charging stations are strategically located to minimise downtime.

  1. Initial Investment

While the long-term cost savings are appealing, the initial investment in electric vans can be a barrier for some trade businesses. Evaluate your budget and explore financing options or government grants to ease the financial burden. Do a full cost-benefit analysis to determine the return on investment over the vehicle's lifespan.

  1. Charging Time

Charging times for electric vans can vary depending on the charging method and the vehicle's battery capacity. Consider how charging times align with your business operations. Fast-charging options are becoming more prevalent, but it's essential to factor in potential delays during busy workdays.

  1. Payload Capacity

Evaluate the payload capacity of electric vans compared to traditional vehicles. While advancements are being made in this area, it's crucial to ensure that an electric van can accommodate the tools and equipment essential to your trade without compromising efficiency.

  1. Vehicle Models and Options

Research the available electric van models and their specifications. Consider different factors such as the size, load capacity, and additional features that may enhance your business operations. Test-driving different models will provide valuable insights into their performance and suitability for your trade.

How To Get Ready To Go Electric

If you've decided that an electric van is the right fit for your trade business, here are practical steps to transition:

  1. Explore Financing Options

Research financing options available for electric vehicles, including loans, leases, and government grants. Determine the most cost-effective approach for acquiring electric vans while considering your budget constraints.

  1. Charging Infrastructure

Establish a charging infrastructure plan. Identify suitable locations for charging stations and explore charging network providers. Having a well-thought-out charging strategy is crucial for minimising downtime and optimising operational efficiency.

  1. Marketing Your Green Initiative

Promote your transition to electric vans as part of your commitment to environmental sustainability. Leverage your eco-friendly practices in your marketing efforts to attract environmentally conscious customers. Highlighting your green initiative can set your business apart in a competitive market.

Rhino Trade Insurance Is Here To Insurance Your Business

The decision to transition your trade business to electric vans in 2024 is an interesting one, requiring careful consideration of environmental, financial, and operational factors. While the advantages of electric vehicles are clear, it's essential to align the transition with the specific needs and goals of your business.

And with that, don't forget to get your trade insurance sorted. We at Rhino Trade Insurance can help sort inexpensive and quality cover for almost all types of trades. Get your bespoke quote today

About The Author Phil McCormick

Experienced in brand marketing and content. Most of that lovely communication you see online will be from Phil. social media, emails, videos, how to make a bacon sarny? You get the gist!

Trade most identified with: Electrician - It’s our Phil’s job to map out all our communications and make sure the signal works! Also, he’s one of the cockiest blighters in the team so electrician fits perfectly!

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