"People aren't leaving their homes," said Staten Island resident Tara Saylor, 25. "They have no place to go."
For many, keeping warm isn't simply a matter of turning on the heat, after Superstorm Sandy knocked out gas lines and electricity. More than 1.5 million customers were without power across 15 states and the District of Columbia.
Among those still in the dark Sunday was New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who urged patience.
"I know it stinks. I still don't have power at my house. I'm not happy about it ... but it's the way it is," he said.
Less than a million households in New Jersey were without power Sunday, he said, down from 2.7 million soon after the storm.
Colder weather is only one concern the region faces, with the presidential election on Tuesday.
Election officials in New York City will temporarily relocate or combine some poll sites because of damage from Sandy, the Board of Elections said in a statement Sunday.
In New Jersey, Christie ordered early voting sites to offer extended hours through the weekend to encourage voters to make it to the polls.
For those who can't make it to their voting precincts, Christie ordered election officials to allow displaced New Jersey voters to cast their ballots electronically by submitting a mail-in ballot application via e-mail or fax. Once approved, the voter will be sent an electronic ballot that can, in turn, be e-mailed or faxed back to the county clerk.
The 900-mile-wide superstorm left a huge swath of damage when it hit the Northeast last week, claiming at least 110 lives in the United States and two in Canada after earlier killing 67 around the Caribbean.
Worst-hit New York state suffered 47 deaths, including 40 in New York City, authorities said. Half of those were in Staten Island.
Almost a week since the storm hit, Staten Island resident Diana Cristiano is struggling to make sense of its surreal aftermath.
She found valuables in the bushes, a generator in the pool and a fish -- still alive -- inside her flooded childhood home. A boat from a nearby canal ended up on a neighbor's lawn.
"It looks like a war zone with people's stuff all out everywhere," said Cristiano, 24.
Volunteers were on hand to aid in the recovery effort, including hundreds of would-be New York City Marathon runners, reported CNN affiliate NY1.
The race, scheduled for Sunday, was canceled for the first time in its history so as not to draw resources and attention away from the response.
Other marathon runners decided to go ahead with the race, "without any official support from the city and without diverting any resources," said CNN iReporter Talis Lin, who sent photographs from the course.
As communities grapple with the human toll, the price of the damage is stunning: Between $30 billion and $50 billion, according to disaster modeling firm Eqecat. That far exceeds the firm's pre-storm estimate of $20 billion.
Officials said Sunday that relief was in sight for residents facing fuel shortages, with Defense Department plans to deliver generators and fuel to stations that need electricity and gasoline.
"We think things will be getting better. We know what a disaster this is," New York Sen. Charles Schumer said Sunday. "My wife waited two and half hours for gas yesterday and called me every half hour to see what I was doing about it, so this is an answer to her as well as to every New Yorker."