Landlord gives tenants cold shoulder

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Residents at 3605 Sedgwick Ave. were without heat and hot water on Sunday and Monday. By Tuesday morning, some were still feeling the winter chill.

The 117-unit building, located between Giles Place and West 238th Street, started getting frigid on Sunday around 2 p.m. and 22-year resident Margaret Rodriguez said it was just 23 degrees in her two-bedroom apartment by Monday night. That’s one degree below the day’s high of 24 degrees, according to the National Weather Service, which recorded the low at 6 degrees in Central Park. The day’s average temperature — 15 — was 17 degrees lower than normal.

“I bought one heater and I huddled in the room with three blankets,” Ms Rodriguez said, adding that when she left for work on Tuesday morning the hot water was back on and the heat was starting to work.

Another resident, who has lived in the building for 17 years and is handicapped, said she was suffering, too.

“I’ve been wearing three layers of clothes and sitting under blankets. I haven’t been able to shower in two days and I’m a little sick. I’ve had a runny nose and sore throat from sitting in the cold,” she said.

The resident added that her apartment also has extensive water damage and ceilings in her bathroom, living room and kitchen have fallen in five times.

“We’ve had to put out a lot of money and repair things ourselves,” she said.
A third resident, who also did not want to be named for fear of repercussion, said she was still freezing on Tuesday at 11 a.m.

“I’m underneath the feather bed and all my clothes are on,” the 19-year resident said, adding that since she is retired, has a bad back and can’t afford to find another place to live, she’s stuck inside her frigid two-bedroom.

The residents interviewed said these problems are par for the course.

The building was without heat and, often, hot water for about half of December, according to complaint records on the City’s Department of Housing Preservation and Development website.

After a short respite from the cold at the beginning of January, the problems began again on Jan. 11.

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