Verizon Cell Phone Tower Leases Expiring in Sizeable Numbers

It appears that many of the initial Verizon’s cell phone tower leases are getting ready to expire over the next few years. This includes a number of towers acquired by Crown Castle. Although hardly empirical- our data suggests that Verizon is waiting to approach many landowners until a few months prior to the expiration of their cell phone tower leases.

Steel in the Air has been representing an increasing number of Verizon cell phone tower lease ground owners who are being approached to extend their existing cell phone tower leases. These leases were signed back in the 80’s in the original days of cellular.

Negotiating these expiriring Verizon cell tower leases can be tricky- and requires a full evaluation of how valuable the cell tower site is to Verizon. This encompasses knowing:

1. Voice and data traffic the cell site handles (typically in minutes of use)
2. Underlying demographics of the site location
3. Coverage objective of the location
4. Available alternatives for Verizon should negotiations go poorly
5. Existing lease rates for other cell sites in the area (not average cell tower lease rate but the 90 percentile rates)
6. Zoning criteria for relocation of a tower

The key to these negotiations is not determining simply the maximum amount that Verizon will agree to for the cell site lease- but to determine what the maximum amount they will agree to but not start looking for a new cell tower site as soon as the lease is signed. Some landowners have gotten too greedy – believing that they negotiated a great deal, only to have the carrier leave in a year or two when they found a better alternative.

If you have been contacted to negotiation an extension to an expiring Verizon cell phone tower lease or rooftop cell site lease, please see our webpage on the subject for further information.

Please note that Verizon and Crown Castle are registered trademarks of the respective companies- Steel in the Air is not affiliated with either company in any fashion.

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    4 thoughts on “Verizon Cell Phone Tower Leases Expiring in Sizeable Numbers”

    1. We were approached a few years back by a frim representing Cingular which wanted to put a cell toewe on our roof, for whatever reason it was never done. We are currently looking for any cell provider that would like to utilize our roof top for a cell tower. We are located in Miami Beach and our roof is over 15 stories high.



    2. I have been with Verizon Wireless for several years. When I first started my home location was Chattanooga, TN. Now I have moved to a rural mountian home and my reception is so bad I have been thinking about just cutting it off. Why pay so much for something that is almost useless.
      I remember a friend telling me some time ago that Cell comps. would lease land for a tower. I would like to know more about this.

      1. The carriers will lease land for a tower but typically when the area is very rural they just don’t feel that it is worth covering. The other issue is that when the terrain is hilly or mountainous, they might have decent coverage in the area but just not at your location. In this situation, they won’t build more towers.

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