Mineral rights leasing in Michigan for gas

I'm trying to help a friend understand about mineral rights leasing in Gladwin, Mi., and he has a couple of things that aren't clear to him.
For example;
If a company is going to put a well in a given spot, why bother paying the surrounding landowners anything if you're getting the gas anyway? If it's a legal issue, where you have to pay royalties, why sign a lease from them, and include a bonus per acre as well?
If a well goes in less than a mile from his property, and he doesn't sign, will he get royalties anyway? What would be the benefit to the company to sign him up?
I heard from another friend, about a woman who refused to lease, (even though she'd get about $23,000 if she did), but was told she'd still get the royalties. Is this true? Why would a company want to pay her that much money, if no well is to be put on her property in the first place. In other words, if the well is going up regardless of what she does, why bother trying to get her to sign and take the money?

Part of his hesitation is not understanding "what's in it for them", if he signs a lease, but nothing is going onto his property. And, if he signs a mineral rights lease, he's afraid they might have rights to run a pipeline through his property at a later date, or even drill there.
Any insight in this would be greatly appreciated.

I have been searching for the same answer for over a week. I have been offered a lease on a small acreage in Texas. I keep asking myself the same question "What is their benefit for leasing"? Before the mineral rights were split between her heir's, my grandmother was offered a very good lease (40 years ago). She wanted to make sure all of her kids agreed before she signed. The oil company ended up leased the land next to her and has been pumping oil ever since. Now we have a company wanting to lease again and I know they can't obtain a lease from all of my grandmother's heirs to allow them to have enough acres to drill a well. Why do they want to lease my small acreage?

As stated above, any insight in this will be greatly appreciated.


Go to "General Mineral Rights Discussion" - "TEXAS - WHY DO OIL COMPANIES LEASE SMALL ACREAGE?"

Thank you, Tommy. Unfortunately, the friend I was asking about this for, died a month ago today. He did tell me a while ago, that the company never contacted him, although his neighbors were, and most of them did sign up. His widow still owns the property, and a well has, indeed already gone in right around Christmas, about 2 miles from her property. My other friend signed, as he has 40 acres within a mile from the well. No money yet, but he's been assured it will be a monthly thing.