For Immediate Release: Tuesday, October 1, 2019
Contact: hpdmedia@hpd.nyc.gov

 

HPD Announces Start of the 2019-2020 "Heat Season" in NYC

As New York’s “heat season” begins, the City reminds tenants, owners and landlords of the temperature requirements for all apartments, and the availability of financial assistance for owner-occupied properties

 

NEW YORK, NY – Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Louise Carroll announces the start of New York City’s “heat season,” during which all residential building owners are required to maintain indoor temperatures at 68 degrees when outdoor temperatures falls below 55 degrees during the day. Indoor temperatures must also be a minimum of 62 degrees overnight, regardless of outdoor temperatures. Building owners are legally required to provide hot water at 120 degrees year-round.

The 2019-2020 “heat season” begins on Tuesday, October 1st, 2019 and continues through Sunday, May 31st, 2020. 

If an apartment lacks appropriate heat and/or hot water, tenants should first attempt to notify the building owner, managing agent or superintendent. If service is not restored, the tenant should register an official complaint via 311. To file a complaint, tenants can call 311, visit 311 online or use the app 311Mobile (on Android and iOS devices) to file a complaint. Hearing-impaired tenants can register complaints via a Touchtone Device for the Deaf (TDD) at (212) 504-4115

“While the weather has been relatively warm for the season, colder weather is just around the corner. Please stay vigilant. Owners must provide adequate heat and hot water as is required by law during heat season,” said HPD Commissioner Louise Carroll. “If your apartment is without heat or hot water during the cold weather months, report it to your landlord. If the condition is not corrected, report it to 311. HPD will do everything within its power to hold owners accountable and ensure renters live in safe and habitable homes year-round.” 

HPD responds to all heat and hot water complaints, and encourages tenants to check the HPD online webpage to learn the result of the complaint. Tenants can also receive complaint status updates via text if a phone number is provided when a complaint is submitted. If a landlord fails to provide heat entirely, HPD’s Emergency Repair Program or Housing Litigation Division will intervene to seek the restoration of heat. 

To prevent serious health issues related to indoor hypothermia, individuals in homes or apartments without heat should protect themselves by wearing warm layers of clothing, staying hydrated, and ensuring there is an adequate amount of safe heat. Use of auxiliary heating can be dangerous. To learn more about keeping warm this winter, visit the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s (DOHMH) website to view their interactive, online infographic

Low-income property owners having trouble maintaining heat in their homes should contact the Home Energy Assistance Program at 1-800-692-0557. Eligible households can learn more information about assistance in paying heating bills or repairing heating equipment.

During the 2018-2019 “Heat Season” (October 1st, 2018 – May 31st, 2019):

  • 232,621 total heat and hot water problems were reported to the City through 311 (this number includes duplicate calls), an increase of 8.1 percent as compared to the previous “Heat Season.”
    • 136,101 unique heat and hot water problems were reported (this number does not include duplicate calls).
  • HPD inspectors attempted 128,052 heat and/or hot water inspections (this number includes multiple inspection attempts in response to a complaint). HPD inspectors wrote 4,553 heat and 5,731 hot water violations, which is a decrease of 4.2 percent and increase of 9.3 percent as compared to the previous “Heat Season.” 
  • HPD completed a total of $1.7 million in heat-related emergency repairs, such as fuel delivery, boiler repairs or hot water repairs.  All ERP costs are billed to the property. 
  • HPD filed 2,229 heat cases in court and collected $1,507,145 in civil penalties related to those cases.  An additional $249,250 was collected in heat settlement penalties for FY19.
  • HPD collected $147,626 in heat inspection fees during FY19.

Top Community Board In Each Borough for Primary Heat/Hot Water Complaints
[Please note: this contains duplicate complaints]

 Manhattan

  • CB 12
    Complaint total: 12,033 | Peak Month January 2019 (2,614) 

Bronx

  • CB 7
    Complaint total: 11,590 | Peak Month January 2019 (2,714) 

Brooklyn

  • CB 17
    Complaint total: 7,697 | Peak Month January 2019 (1,691) 

Queens

  • CB 4
    Complaint total: 5,666 | Peak Month January 2019 (1,083) 

Staten Island

  • CB 1
    Complaint total: Total 1,609 | Peak Month January 2019 (448)