The National Park Service provides for leasing of historic as well as non-historic properties in park areas. A lease may not authorize an activity that could be authorized by a concessions contract or commercial use authorization. All leases must provide for fair market value rent as determined by an appraisal. All net income is reinvested to fund historic preservation, capital improvements of the historic properties, park infrastructure, and any deferred maintenance needs.

The NPS Director may issue a request for bids if the amount of rent is the only criterion for award of a lease. The Director must issue a request for proposals when the award of a lease is based on selection criteria other than the rental rate. An request for proposals may be preceded by issuing a request for qualification. The purpose of the qualifications solicitations is to select a "short list" of potential offerors that meet minimum management, financial and other qualifications necessary for submission of a proposal in response to a request for proposals.