By Jacqueline Quynh

WESTMINSTER, Colo. (CBS4) – One of the challenges of living around Colorado is that there are many older buildings that run on boiler heating systems. They take time to heat up, and they take time to cool down; and that means it’s not as easy to turn off and on.

(credit: CBS)

“I’ve never really had to worry about heat,” Dakota Turner said.

Turner lives at the Copperwood Apartments in Westminster. Since Tuesday night, he and others there have not been able to keep warm.

“We have babies and kids and a lot of people are doing homeschooling,” Turner told CBS4.

The problem became apparent when Turner called the manager’s office because he thought the heat was not working.

(credit: CBS)

“Here we have central air and central heat,” Turner said.

However, the office later sent out a message explaining that the complex operates on a boiler system. Therefore once they are turned on, they must stay on. The message went on to say that because temperatures were forecast to warm up, they would not be turned on at this point.

“Sure they might have said we have a boiler, but to many people especially my age, I don’t know what that means,” said Turner.

With the thermostat reading 57 degrees, Turner thinks his apartment is too cold, and this kind of heating is not what he agreed to on his lease.

“I expect to have heat with that $1,400 a month,” he added.

CBS4 reached out to the Thomas Law Group about what a tenant can do. They told us the landlord must first get written notification of the issue. After 96 hours a tenant has the option of providing written intent to move out, sue to force a fix, or sue for monetary damages.

Under the first two options, the landlord will be given more time to address the issue. The firm warns, miss a step and you could lose your case.

Management offered space heaters to residents, but for Turner, he said it’s not enough.

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Jacqueline Quynh

  1. Mary says:

    These boiler heated apartments are throughout the metro area (including in Denver itself) – and if that information is covered in the lease (as it likely is), it’s highly likely that the residents are SOL, especially with the forecast warmup (70s over the weekend, 80s next week). Refusing the space heater was “cutting off his nose to spite his face”.

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