“LEASE VALUE CALCULATOR FORMULA = What they want you to know ÷ WHAT WE KNOW”
CELL TOWER LEASE RATES 2024 – WHAT DO CELL SITES RENT FOR?
What are cell tower lease rates in 2024 and what are the rents the property owners should expect to see on new cell site ground and rooftop leases, or on existing tower leases renewals? What do cell tower leases actually pay? That’s the million dollar question we get asked every day. In 2024 and beyond, cell tower rent payments are determined on a site by site basis. What is our cellular site lease really worth vs. what the tower company or carrier is offering us? How do we know what fair market value of a wireless telecom lease is? What about “cell tower comps” like the ones that exist in commercial real estate valuations? What is the average cell tower rent in California, Texas, Florida, New York, or pick your city? How are cell tower rents determined or calculated in 2024? Do I need a calculator to figure it out?
Cell Tower Lease Rates 2024: What there’s a lot of confusion by design.
The biggest question that property owners tend to have about cell tower rents when they contact us, is if they are getting paid correctly or fairly, when it comes to rent payments. Is the proposed cell phone tower rent too low? Are they (the property owners) asking for too much rent in the counter-offer? How should the cell tower lease agreement be structured? Most attorneys, real estate appraisers, real estate agents and financial advisors are unable to answer these questions. And at best, maybe they have seen a handful of these deals in their lifetimes, at best.
We get questions just like these every week:
“My uncle’s neighbor has a cell tower that pays $10,000 a month, so that’s what I think that we should be getting paid. Am I wrong?”
“I know someone that has a cell tower on their building with Verizon, AT&T T-Mobile and they get $5,000 monthly, so that’s what I told them that I want, now they won’t return my calls.”
“I was offered $500 per month for a ten year cell phone tower lease and it has 16 five-year renewals. Should I sign it?”
“The cell tower company representative says that they don’t pay more than $800 per month and 7.5% increases in rent every 5-years.”
“The cell tower company representative says that our cell tower lease was flagged for review and that in order to not risk having the cell tower lease terminated, we must sign an amendment which modifies our lease, and lowers our monthly cell tower rent payment by approximately 35%. Are cell tower lease rent rates coming down in 2024? What should we do?”
How Are Cell Tower Lease Rent Rates Determined in 2024?
Cell tower lease rates 2024… Here’s the bottom line. There are many factors that go into determining the values of cell tower lease rents in 2024 and they are the same uncharged factors that we at Tower Genius have used to calculate rents for cell tower landlords. Cell tower lease rents are determined on a site by site individual basis and influenced by many factors:
Direct Carrier Lease (Land / Vertical Structure)
Is it a direct carrier ground lease or rooftop cell site lease or a lease on a cell tower that you own, directly with T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless, AT&T, DISH Network or US Cellular? A direct lease without a middle party will always pay more. They can range anywhere from $500 per month to even $5,000 per month in some instances.
Cell Tower Developer Lease (Usually a Ground Lease)
Is the proposed cell tower lease being offered by a cell tower development or tower management company like American Tower, Vertical Bridge, Crown Castle, SBA Communications, Diamond Communications, Everest Infrastructure, Harmoni Towers, Tillman Infrastructure, PTI or others? These are not direct leases with Verizon, T-Mobile or AT&T, these carriers are SUBTENANTS of the tower companies. Verizon will lease space from American Tower and your lease will be with American Tower and not with Verizon. Verizon or the carrier subtenant will pay American Tower or the tower company around $2,000 monthly in rent, and American Tower or the cell tower company will try to pay you less than $1,000 per month.
What Are Other Factors That Influence Cell Tower Rent Values in 2024?
- Location (Aesthetics)
- Zoning & Land Use (wireless ordinance)
- Access to Utilities (Fiberoptic)
- Availability of Suitable Locations (high demand for coverage + low supply of suitable locations = higher rent value)
- Traffic (AADT — daily vehicle traffic or foot traffic can influence cell site lease rent values)
- Existing small cell nodes (5G small cells installed in public Right of Ways — R.O.W.S. paying only $270 per year in rent to the local city municipality.)