About Us

Welcome to Steel in the Air, your trusted source for cellular lease negotiations, lease valuations, and lease buyouts. We dedicate this website to the landowners we serve and have done our very best to make it a reputable public resource for the telecom industry – in specific, landowners, building owners and local governments.


We want to offer you value - not line our own pockets. Our goal is to help you however we can, and if we can't for the time being, we will tell you. We'll never encourage you to do something you're uncomfortable with.

customer loyalty

We work for you, not the cell phone or tower companies. Our goal is to get you the best lease possible. We also offer counsel for a full year after we evaluate your lease.

unparalleled expertise

With over 15,000 points in our lease database, we can provide you with the most reliable information available. We've been building and cultivating our data for over 20 years.

Flexible Terms

We offer flexible payment terms so we can meet your specific needs. Unlike some of our competitors, we won't take a percentage of your lease. Instead, we charge one fixed, flat rate.

The Team

Steel in the Air was created in 2004 with the explicit purpose of representing landowners who were involved in contracting with wireless carriers and/or cell tower companies to lease a parcel of their property for the purpose of developing cell sites.

Our team of experts is dedicated to getting our clients the best rate and terms possible on their land and cell tower leases. Because we keep our team small, we have the time to give our clients the utmost attention, and we provide an intimate environment so we can get to know you and your specific situation – because every lease and landowner is unique. We believe in sharing great information and providing our clients with the most value possible; as such, we have an immense database which we have spent 20 years building, with over 15,000 lease and data points so we can properly advise you. In addition, we never encourage prospective clients to hire us unless we are confident that our services can bring them value.

Each team member provides a specific function here at Steel in the Air, so we can meet every client’s needs and interests. We strongly believe you should get the most value for your time and property; that’s why we are so well known in the industry for helping our clients secure the best leases and terms they can get.

Ken Schmidt

Ken Schmidt is President and CEO of Steel in the Air. Ken has nearly 25 years of experience in wireless and is widely recognized as the expert in the field of cell tower leases and wireless infrastructure valuation especially towers. His firm was the first nationwide cell tower lease consultancy in the US. Ken has been quoted frequently by newspapers like the WSJ, New York Times, and Bloomberg.

His expertise is sought after by investors, research analysts, municipalities, and companies for his insight on towers, small cells, and wireless infrastructure. He is a strong believer that landowners and small tower owners deserve to have expert guidance when negotiating wireless leases, Ken frequently authors guides and blog posts that are widely read.

One of Ken’s founding principles for Steel in the Air is the belief that it is important to extend useful relevant information to landowners which may not result in direct compensation but will be in the best interest of the landowner in the long run.



During the five-year period from 1996-2001, the United States showed its sharpest increase in cell tower growth (30K cell sites in 1996 surged to 127K in 2001).

The Telecom Act of 1996 resulted in an era that was remarkably similar to the Wild West – wireless carriers and cell tower companies embarked upon an aggressive nationwide race to claim as many cell site locations as they could. (The major dissimilarity between the Wild West and the Telecom Era was that during the latter period, the land acquired was not meant to be simply a means of sustenance, but in every way was meant for profit).

The demand for cell towers was high and the suppliers (the tower companies) struggled to keep up. For a while, chaos ensued, along with a lot of shady marketing and deceptive business practices. In an effort to stay ahead of the game, tower companies would imply that they had actually built towers on cell site locations before they were, in fact, constructed.

Contact Us

Please reach out to us if you have any questions. We aim to be prompt!

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