That's how cold it is in our apartment in Toronto, where the cooling and oft-sought-after-in-summer "lake effect" is in full force in October.
17 degrees is not how cold it feels (after over 24 hours of this, it feels about - 10, even with three sweaters on!!!!), but how cold it actually IS, based on three readings taken by our building superintendent this morning. Yup.
You see, the way it works is that the building person has to take the reading, then he fills out a little form for head office to request them to turn on the heat.
Never mind that section Regulation 516/06 of the Residential Tenancies Act, Section 4, stipulates that "the heating season is from September 1, to June 15 of any given year." and that between those two dates, a landlord is legally obligated to provide a tenant with heat, more specifically, "room temperature of 20 degrees Celsius at 1.5 metres above floor level and one metre from exterior walls in all habitable space and in any area intended for normal use by tenants, including recreation rooms and laundry rooms but excluding locker rooms and garages" -- the reality is that until the paperwork gets filled in by our building manager and sent to Homestead's illustrious head office, and they elect to actually follow the law, we are all left FREEZING!!!!
Interestingly, the Landlord's representative (they are a bunch of lawyers, who own a number of buildings, and hire peons to do the dirty work for them) seems very eager to enforce rules and regulations: He called me a few months ago to tell me I had to take a colourful wreath off my door because although they allowed wreaths at Christmas time as an exception (no cultural proficiency for these landlords!!!), in general, door décor was not permitted, as the door exterior was the property of the landlord and not the tenant. Since it was now summer time, he said, the thing had to go. I complied, and removed the festive adornment from our apartment door.
Then, a few weeks ago, my friend at head office called back, this time about a misinterpretation he had of the Elections Canada act... he mistakenly thought he could tell the building managers to tell us to remove the sign supporting our local candidate which we had proudly installed on our balcony to encourage our neighbours to vote for someone with a brain and a heart on October 19th.
(Don't worry, I corrected him and pointed him to Section 322 (1) of the Act, which states that "no landlord can prohibit tenants from displaying election advertising on the premises covered by their lease".)
I left a strongly worded phone message, but I have a funny feeling it'll be a while before I hear back.
In the meantime, it's sweaters and blankets for us... and maybe a building-wide petition to send to another lawyer -- one who herself abides by and enforces tenant-protecting laws rather than breaking them.