TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - We all know how brutally cold it is, but imagine walking into a home that isn't heated.
That's what one renter is doing after she said her furnace was broken nearly five months ago. For the sake of her and her six children's safety, she called 11 for action.
An infrared thermometer reads 52 to 53 degrees inside Spring Townsend's home on Palmwood in Central Toledo. Her curtains blow as wind sneaks into the living room where she hoped to celebrate the holiday with her six children.
"When I first looked at this house I was in love with this house," explained Townsend, a renter without heat. "I was like so happy to tell everybody I got a bigger house for my kids to have somewhere to play. My mom was like you have to do all the holidays because you have the biggest house and I didn't get to do any of that."
Now, presents sit untouched under the tree as her kids have had to stay with others because she said the cold inside their home has made them sick.
"It's been very stressful like I'll turn the stove on and boil water," said Townsend. "We got some space heaters, but if you turn the space heaters on at the same time all the power in the house goes out."
Townsend is the only person still at the house. She said she sleeps in multiple layers, with her winter coat, hat, gloves, and five blankets.
Spring said she has called her landlord, 211, Lucas Metropolitan Housing Authority, the city, Red Cross and more.
"Nobody wanted to listen to what I had to say like I was just making it up. Like it's not okay for somebody to live like this, like something needs to be done," said Spring Townsend.
The city said they sent an inspector out who declared the furnace was installed improperly. They put a warning on the home saying it is unfit for human habitation and within 72 hours it must be fixed or vacant because of the lack of heat.
The Lucas County Auditors website shows the property is owned by Adel Abed.
He said a new furnace has been installed and has already signed a contract for the work.
He said he has tried his best to fix the issue for weeks.
As for Townsend, she said her family has no plans to move back into the home.