If you are already party to a T-Mobile wireless lease, you have likely received multiple “consent requests” from T-Mobile asking to make “minor” improvements to their equipment. These are known as “equipment modifications.“ In some cases, they may be seeking additional ground space for a generator. T-Mobile is actively deploying 600Mhz (low band frequency that travels farther) to their existing sites which often involves new equipment. T-Mobile’s agents suggest in the consent request and verbally that the changes are within the lease area, and they imply that you are obligated to agree to the changes. In many cases, the lease does not allow them to make the changes and you are entitled to ask for more rent for your approval. We advise anyone receiving such a request to first ask for construction drawings showing the changes. From there, here is how we can help.
In late 2012, T-Mobile announced it would sell 7,200 towers to Crown Castle. Those landowners who own the land upon which the 7,200 towers were built have since been receiving proposals from Crown Castle (as a successor to T-Mobile) to either extend or buy their lease. (Crown Castle now has the right to waive the consent to sell provision mentioned above). If you have received a proposal to extend the term of your lease or to purchase your lease, please contact us first.
If you are already party to a T-Mobile wireless lease, then you likely have been contacted recently by a third-party Lease Optimization company seeking to renegotiate the terms of the T-Mobile lease. In short, these companies suggest that because of the pending T-Mobile and Sprint merger that your lease is at risk and your failure to agree to the revised terms will impact their review of the combined assets after they merge. These agents are very aggressive- calling frequently and issuing many fake drop-dead dates. If you have been contacted to renegotiate your lease, we can help you:
While T-Mobile lease templates are basically the same as the other Big 4 Carriers: AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon, there is one notable difference. When it comes to lease buyouts, T-Mobile is very aggressive in its attempts to prevent landowners or structure owners from selling their leases to third parties. For instance, while each of the other wireless carriers adds a Right of First Refusal (ROFR) clause to their lease templates, T-Mobile instead uses a consent provision. By inserting language that states that the landowner may not assign or transfer the Lease without T-Mobile’s consent, which may be withheld at T-Mobile’s sole discretion, it effectively removes the landowner’s ability to sell the Lease in the future. For most landowners, this is an unreasonable restriction (i.e. alienation) on the right to sell or convey the Lease. T-Mobile is unlikely to delete this provision, however, unless you have a unique property or structure upon which T-Mobile must collocate.
If you happen to be one of the 1,500 or so property owners lucky enough to be approached by T-Mobile this year, you should know that T-Mobile is relatively straightforward to deal with when it comes to negotiating a proposed lease. However, compared to other wireless carriers like AT&T and Verizon, they tend to be cheaper when it comes to paying rent. They are more apt to consider alternative locations that are slightly inferior, if the landowner or structure owner asks for too much rent or unreasonable terms in the lease agreement. Once installed on the property or structure, T-Mobile tends to be a good and responsive tenant. However, like the other wireless service providers, they have recently conveyed most of their towers to one of the public tower companies.
|Subscribers||~110 million subscribers|
|Rank by Subscriber||#3|
|Wi-Fi Offload||Yes- T-Mobile offers WIFI Offload for voice calls and data.|
|Number of Cell Sites||~79,000|
|New Sites: 2023||~1,500 estimated|
|Tower Sales||In late 2012: T-Mobile subleased the rights of 7,200 towers to Crown Castle for $2.4 B.|
|Acquisitions||2013: MetroPCS; 2018: Sprint|
|Lease Value||High- just below AT&T and Verizon|
Steel in the Air has been assisting landowners and communities with cellular/ wireless telecom lease negotiations for over a decade. We have reviewed hundreds of T-Mobile leases and know the ins and outs of the industry better than anyone. We take great pride in providing unique, unbiased and reliable guidance.
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