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NYC’s arctic chill prompts nearly 6,000 heat complaints

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Here’s what you can do if your building isn’t adequately heated this winter


The city has been hammered heat complaints from tenants across city the as the arctic chill continues to bring freezing temperatures across the Northeast.

According to reports from the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, there have been nearly 6,000 complaints over the past three days. There were 973 complaints on Monday, 2,305 on Tuesday, and 2,712 on Wednesday, reports the NY Daily News.

Temperatures will continue to hover between the mid 20s and single digits, so now is as good a time as ever to make sure you know what to do in the event that your building doesn’t have adequate heat.

According to the New York State Attorney General Tenants' Rights Guide, tenants have the right to a “livable, safe, and sanitary apartment” that includes heat and hot water on a regular basis. Building owners are required to provide hot water all year round and heat between October 1 through May 31, known as the “heat season,” reports StreetEasy.

Property owners are required to provide tenants with heat between the hours of 6 a.m. and 10 p.m; if outside temperatures drop below 55 degrees, inside temperatures must be no lower than 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., inside temperatures must be kept no lower than 62 degrees.

If your landlord fails to provide heat and you’ve tried contacting them regarding the issue, the next step is to call 311 to report it. The city can dispatch a team out to make whatever repairs are needed to get heat up and running again and will bill the landlord for it later. If this is a continuous issue where you can’t get your landlord to provide heat and hot water, you have the right to pursue legal action against them.