Right Time To Sell?

Very interested in replies from the experts. Just curious. I have leases in Tyler County, W.Va. Muddy Creek too. I am probably sharing leases with many of you on this site. I say that because the list is numerous of owners. Anderson, Weekly are just TWO of the names of the original names who are family and began all of this.

Just wondering now with watching the news and the hype over all-electric vehicles at some point in the near future, and with what I pay in additional tax to Tyler County if maybe I should just go ahead and sell. I signed a lease with Antero well over a year ago, got my sign-on bonus, and negotiated my percent, but have heard NOTHING. Have been recently approached again to sell, but low ball offers I feel.

Debra, my family owns royalty in this Dist, Muddy Creek, family name is Twyman. We have 2 tracts and are wanting to sell the other one. Have received any real offers?

Bertie and Debra, The issue that mineral owners don’t understand about selling is that some offers might not be low offers and/or low baller offers. You have to find a good mineral appraiser to look at the area you are in and also the lease that you negotiated as well as how you were pulled into the unit. Offers are justified on your NET acreage as well. Find a good mineral appraiser like Rachel Vass who is on this forum. She can help you understand better.

Lots of ways to look at this and some are more personal than financial. I’ll try to not monologue!

I can remember in the 2013ish time how excited most people in App basin were on the future of shale gas and impact on the area (I know I was being from Ohio). Unfortunately as time progressed, gas prices collapsed and a couple of companies went bankrupt and subsequently sold assets (2016ish). WV can be a bit more difficult to drill in than OH due to the topography, costs more to level a hill than drill on semi-flat surface. You have to pump water up from the Ohio river to complete (frac) wells, there are pad slips, pipeline slips, etc. that all add operational cost. So we started to see a shift in spend to OH and PA over the past few years. The benefit of WV is that the gas is wet, meaning it produces both NGLs and dry gas from the Marcellus (Utica is dry gas due to being deep).

As you have probably seen in the news, Europe and other countries are desperate for these liquids as they are used for heating generation and power generation. Power generation historically was generated from burning coal and then subsequently we moved to natural gas as it is cheaper, cleaner, and more reliable fuel source. Renewables have come on the seen as a more “green” way to bring power generation to market not using fossil fuels. There are inherent issues though with alternative energy that has yet to be solved but is being developed. That is, when turbines go down or panel’s are broken or the sun doesn’t shine or wind wont blow you have to have a reliable base energy to pick up the load difference. Otherwise we would all lose power. The main reason is that there is no real ability to store alternative energy to be used later on, batteries cannot store power long enough for the weather to change for example. All that to say, natural gas is very important in the global energy mix as it is the main secondary (sometimes primary) source of power to turn your lights on.

Gas/NGL/Oil are also global resources. Meaning, as developing countries become more developed (think China, India, etc.) their demand for energy increases. Many of these countries do not have their own source of energy creation outside of coal, nuclear, and some hydro. Alternatives are to expensive and to sparse to generate enough electricity needed to meet the demand in 3rd world countries. NGL’s are there to meet that demand for many of these developing countries and even some developed. In the U.S we pay around $2-4/mcf of gas, in Europe it is $15+ currently and others multiples of that. Why? No supply and demand is up. While it will eventually balance itself (markets always balance) the stage has been set that gas is extremely important world commodity.

Now, why does all of that matter to you? It is a question of time value. If your assets are in an area where production is proven and the cost to bring gas to market is known (i.e there are wells that are profitable around you) then your assets will most likely be drilled at some point. The question is…when. That is a hard question and it is what de-values your minerals from a buyers perspective. The buyer has to take into account how long it will take for your minerals to produce and that is a risk they discount the underlying value for. Similar to buying land outside of a city center and waiting until a developer comes and wants to buy it to build an apartment complex. Depending on when you buy, how fast the city grows, etc. will determine how long you hold the land and what its value is each day.

Antero is a public company and has an incentive to keep drilling. Gas prices are favorable and they are able to fetch a premium in the market. However, in this area of returning cash to shareholders (i.e public O&G companies are spending less to show profit and pay dividends) growth and new wells being drilled are stunted. Compared to a few years ago, public Operators are only drilling enough wells to barely grow production to show that they can be profitable. This is a double edged sword; gas prices are high because of supply vs. demand but Operators will not spend more to bring wells online due to investors demands. Creates a perfect storm that we see playing in the markets today.

So if the market is favorable but time dependent what are the reasons to sell? Easy, you don’t want to wait to see a return on the minerals or maybe have another investment you would rather put money into. Not a problem at all, in fact for many owners selling off some or all of their O&G assets is a way to spread risk around. Some also sell because they need money for something else; again not a problem we all have life events that require us to take inventory.

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I didn’t realize the global nature of this, you really opened my eyes to the larger picture. I’m sure my wife, who has inherited multiple sub 0.5 nma parcels just wants to clear them off our books, trying to simplify our life. I get the impression that Antero treats these tiny parcels more as nuisance deals and just want to settle for a nominal amount, not based on actual acreage involved. I can’t imagine setting up leases for each of these small parcels, just too much effort to track them all over too long a period of time to make it personally worthwhile, hence her desire to sell. We just dont want to be taken advantage of due to our lack of expertise/local knowledge.

Donald if Antero triples their offer will it make a difference in your life? Tough to be taken advantage of if you own very little acreage.

Agree; if its small acreage then a 3x offer might not be very much $$ overall. You can always reach out to some of the larger or more local buyers and get enough offers to see where they all land on the spectrum. If they are all within the same range then you can feel more comfortable that is the value today (much like getting multiple offers on your house). If they are all over the map then might need to research a bit more. More expensive route but verifiable is to get it appraised.

Are these small parcel mineral rights sales recorded anywhere publically available so that someone can do research on what price they have fetched recently?

Good question, and yes I think I’m better off with 3x than x. I think Ive been asking the wrong question, I should just counter with a 3x offer and see where they land. That takes zero effort on my part, and I may come away with 2x, so I’m happy.

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