Selling Your Mineral Rights – What Is The Role Of A Landman?
May 17, 2016
Energy companies are continuously in search of mineral rights and landowners interested in selling mineral rights. This often leaves companies searching for landowners about the sale of mineral rights. Tracking down who owns certain parcels of land and whether or not those owners actually own the mineral rights on their land can be a complicated job, which is why such work is commonly left to a specialist known as a landman.
What Is A Landman?
A landman is an independent contractor hired by energy companies looking to purchase mineral rights to a certain area of land. A landman will research property and mineral ownership, then act as an impartial liaison between the energy company and the mineral owners.
Confirming Land Ownership
When a company finds a piece of land they would like to explore to extract minerals from the ground, they must first find and confirm ownership of that parcel of land. This is not always as easy as it may sound, since a large plot of land may have just one owner or hundreds of owners. A contracted landman will determine all the owners of a certain piece of land through an extensive property records search process. Yet before an energy company can attempt to negotiate for the sale of property mineral rights, they must locate the current, legal owner of that land.
Confirming Mineral Rights Ownership
Once property owners have been located, the next step for the landman is to research each owner’s plot and determine whether they do have legal ownership of the mineral rights within that land. Since mineral rights can be sold separately from the surface land, it can never be assumed that a landowner actually owns the mineral rights. Some landowners may not even be aware that they do not own the mineral rights to surface land that they own. Selling mineral rights can only be done by the individual who legally owns those rights, no matter who owns the property.
Negotiation and Supervision of Land Deals
After all ownership has been confirmed, the landman will then approach the appropriate land and mineral owners to state the intent of the company. It is common to advise such owners that the interested energy company wants to either purchase the land or lease the rights to the minerals contained under the surface of that land.
The landman will present owners interested in selling mineral rights with a lease offer from the purchasing company and negotiate between both parties until a contract is signed. The landman’s job does not end with the signed contract, as the landman is also responsible for following the development of all mineral projects and ensuring that contract specifications are upheld.
A qualified, experienced landman is critical to the process of land acquisition and the sale of mineral rights to companies seeking to purchase them. Acting as an impartial liaison to assist with such deals, these independent contractors provide a valuable service to both the companies that hire them and the owners of land and mineral rights. Most importantly, landmen are research specialists who perform a vital service in the confirmation of legal land and mineral rights ownership, allowing energy companies to deal with the right individuals when looking to purchase mineral rights!
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Additional Articles:Selling Mineral Rights in The Permian Basin, Selling Mineral Rights in The United States, Selling Minerals in West Texas
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