What You Should Know About U.S. Cellular Cell Site Leases
Although we haven’t had as much experience with U.S. Cellular Leases as we have with the Big Four Carriers, there are two main reasons that property owners and local governments consult with us regarding U.S. Cellular:
If you have been contacted by a U.S. Cellular representative (aka, site acquisition agent) regarding the construction of a cell tower on your property, you may want to:
- Educate yourself regarding the real world effects of entering into a Landlord/ Tenant lease with U.S. Cellular;
- Determine appropriate rent, escalation and lease duration terms; and/ or
- Get tips on favorably negotiating the terms of the proposed Lease Agreement prior to signing.
If you are already party to a wireless lease, then you might be somewhat familiar with common cell site lease negotiation tactics. Indeed, there are certain “tricks of the trade” that we like to educate our clients about to ensure that you not only receive fair treatment, but also reap ultimate benefits when renegotiating the terms of a lease agreement with Wireless Carriers, like U.S. Cellular. We can help you to:
- Understand U.S. Cellular’s reasons for requesting any change;
- Determine what fees (if any) should be charged to U.S. Cellular;
- Evaluate whether or not changes to the language and terms of the Lease are favorable; and/ or
- Negotiate the Lease in a way that protects and supports your interests.
U.S. Cellular Lease Negotiation Tactics
In our experience, U.S. Cellular is more cost-conscious than most of the other Big Four Carriers, meaning that on average, they pay less for cell site leases.
U.S. Cellular Industry News
|Subscribers||~5 million customers across 23 states.|
|Technology||U.S. Cellular stated that by 2015 year-end, 98% of its customers will have access to 4G LTE speeds.|
|Wi-Fi Offload||In 2012, U.S. Cellular launched a free app that allows users to connect to Wi-Fi hotspots nationwide.|
|New Sites: 2015||U.S. Cellular recently sold off it’s Chicago network and has been focused on building out LTE. It teamed up with King Street Wireless to add 600+ 4G LTE sites in 2015, expanding its network in 10 states.|
|Tower Sales||In December 2014, U.S. Cellular made waves when it sold 595 towers to Vertical Bridge for $159 million.|
|Acquisitions||U.S. Cellular began as a rural phone company: Telephone and Data Systems (TDS) in 1969. TDS still owns the majority of the company.|