Winter = “Heat Season” for New Yorkers

Do you know about “heat season” in New York? Chances are, even if you’ve never heard of it, you’ve wondered about when exactly your landlord plans to turn the heat on during a cool morning or chilly night. Turns out, it’s not guesswork. There are legal guidelines for landlords about providing sufficient heat and hot water for tenants.

What Is Heat Season?

New York City’ s “Heat Season”  as identified by New York’s Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) is the period of time between October 1st onto May 31st that building owners are obligated by law to keep their home heated to a temperature of at least 68 degrees indoors when the temperature outdoors have fallen below 55 degrees. 

What Happens If My Landlord Isn’t Complying?

The first step is to contact your landlord and document it. If you text or email, note when you made the request and what sort of reply, if any, you received. It’s best to avoid a phone call so you have your request in writing.

If you don’t hear back and the situation isn’t resolved in a timely manner, you can file an official complaint with the HPD by calling 311 or visiting their website. You can also check the website to see if any other tenants have filed complaints If not, encourage others to do so. 

What Happens After You File an NYC Heat Season Complaint?

After you file your complaint, HPD will contact your landlord  to determine the why the heat is not on. They will also  ask other tenants for updates, and  will schedule an inspection if the heat is not turned on..  Your landlord may face being issued a violation and fine. If the situation has still not improved, your final recourse would be to take legal action and consult a lawyer that specializes in tenants’ rights.

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