2014 marked the first year that the cell tower business in the United States experienced a decline in active sites, according to analysts at SNL Kagan. This reduction is thought to have been the result of Nextel location decommissioning, as well as the closing of redundant sites resulting from the acquisition of Leap Wireless and MetroPCS by AT&T Inc. and T-Mobile US Inc., respectively. Though carrier consolidation is always a potential threat to the longevity of leases held by cell site landlords, fortunately the lull appears to have been temporary. As the need for 4G and 5G networks flourishes, the constant demand for coverage means more and more cell towers are being constructed.
At the end of 2015, there were a little over 155,000 active towers in the US, with projected annual growth of 3.0% through 2025. Tower ownership continued to shift in 2015 with the exits of AT&T and Verizon Wireless from the market, but the majority of U.S. cell towers are held by a handful of owners: American Tower Corporation, Crown Castle International, SBA Communications, U.S. Cellular, Insight Wireless Group, and Vertical Bridge. As competition has lessened, some carriers find themselves paying higher prices for tower space. What does all this mean to you as a current or prospective leaseholder? It means that your asset—whether you already have a lease agreement or have been approached about signing one—is extremely valuable and that you should be fairly compensated for its use. How do you ensure that you get the best deal? By working with The Filo Group.
If you’re a current landowner with a cellular lease reaching expiration, it is time to strategize your next move for lease extension or renewal. This is your chance to increase rental rates and renegotiate lease terms. Don’t forget that a new contract also presents the tenant with an opportunity to work in inequitable terms that favor their interests, not yours. To guarantee that the new lease is written to your advantage, calling upon The Filo Group’s extensive experience in negotiating wireless transactions can make all the difference.
Or perhaps you’re a leaseholder who has been contacted by an acquisition company about a lease purchase offer. A substantial lump sum may sound tempting, especially if you want to avoid the risk of more cell site decommissioning and, consequently, a terminated lease. But is the buyout company lowballing you on price and writing in terms that could affect future use of your property? What is your lease really worth, and should you pursue more cash up front or a shorter term purchase agreement? By partnering with The Filo Group, you’ll have all the answers you need to make confident decisions and see that no money is left on the table.
If you’ve been approached about putting a cell tower on your property, there are important matters to consider before signing an agreement. These contracts are dense and complicated with terms, such as an easement or lease assignment, any of which could come back to bite you. Knowing exactly what to look for and how to effectively negotiate are the keys to protecting your interests and seeing that you get the rent you deserve. With expertise in the legal and financial fields, as well as site acquisition, development, and leasing, nobody knows the ins and outs of the business like The Filo Group.
In the complex and rapidly changing wireless environment, it is wise to seek advice and support from top industry experts to make certain that you get the most favorable outcome. The Filo Group will provide you with unparalleled service and tirelessly advocate on your behalf. Contact us today for more information on how we can tailor a plan to your specific needs.