Ask almost anyone if they would like access to faster internet load times, fewer interruptions to cell service, and better coverage in more places, and the answer is almost guaranteed to be YES. The good news: 5G wireless service will help with all of these issues. However, not everyone is ready to celebrate.
In order to support 5G technology, hundreds or possibly thousands of new cell tower antennas will need to be installed. This increase is polarizing neighborhoods and communities as people weigh the pros and cons of 5G. While these new towers will not be as large or noticeable as traditional cell towers have been in the past, protesters remain unconvinced that the benefits outweigh the risks.
Health concerns are the most vocal complaint among those against new cell towers. The National Cancer Institute has maintained the risk of the radiation levels emitting from cell towers is no greater than that of microwaves, which are commonplace in most American homes. However, many people do not feel there is quite enough evidence to be comfortable with doubling the number of towers in neighborhoods and communities.
Other homeowners feel strongly the new small cell towers will cause property values to decline. Though these new cell towers are smaller than the traditional version, they are still noticeable with some being placed directly at the front of an entrance, particularly with condos. In these cases, homeowners fear certain parts of town or neighborhoods will fill with antennae after antennae, causing diminished curb appeal when it comes time to sell. After all, no one wants to view an ugly antennae when they look out of their home windows.
Unfortunately many cell tower leases are constructed to benefit the tower company or cell company rather than the community. In other words, cities may be subsidizing telecommunication companies like AT&T or Verizon without even realizing it. Cell tower leases are traditionally negotiate between the city and a tower company. When properly negotiated, these contracts can bring in much-needed extra income to fund local programs like schools, hospitals, or firefighters. Without understanding how underpaid these contracts work, communities are being woefully underpaid in these new leases.
While we all want lightening fast service, increased bandwidth, and better efficiency, it’s important to understand the big picture before voting yes or no to a cell tower in your neighborhood or community.
If you or your city has been approached about placing a cell tower on your property or making changes to your existing lease, get the facts before you sign anything. Call today for a free lease review 1-877-456-7552.