Oddly enough the temperatures have been pretty high for October this year, but as November breaks in, the temperatures are steadily dropping. For most of us living in apartments, its important to understand the rights we have as tenants, and for those Landlords that are renting their apartments, they must aware of their obligations.
New York has codified the utility requirements for landlords, especially heat and hot water with specific temperatures that must be met before it becomes unlawful.
Multiple Dwelling Law § 79, Multiple Residence Law § 173, and NYC Admin. Code § 27-2029 provide that Heat must be supplied from October 1st-May 31st. During the hours of 6am to 10pm if the outside temperature is less than 55F, the inside temperature must be brought to a steady 68F. From the hours of 10pm to 6am, if the temperature falls before 40F, the temperature must be brought to 55F. (I figure they think you got a few blankets, because that is pretty cold.)
If your landlord ever lags on his responsibility to provide this utility, you as the tenant, have the right to enforce these rights, either by notifying the landlord through letter, certified mail receipt requested, or calling 311 and reporting the indoor temperature versus the outside temperature. For each and everyday, you should list the time, date, indoor/outside temperature, and sign it as a log for your records.
You also have rights as to receiving hot water. Multiple Dwelling Law § 75, Multiple Residence Law § 170, and NYC Admin. Code § 27-2031 provide that hot water must register above and at a constant of 120F
If you or someone you know has been making complaints regarding these utility services not being provided to them, contact your attorney for further information on how you can enforce the law.