Jeff, I am new to this forum as well. We are surface and partial mineral owners of 60 acres in Section 18, Township 08N, Range 66W. Chesapeake recently (11/07/11) starting drilling in our section. They offered us $600/acre for a 5 year paid-up lease and 18.75% royalty. There are new sites popping up in almost EVERY section around us as well, just in the last few months. We haven't signed it yet. We're hoping to negotiate a shorter term (1-3 yrs) and possibly higher royalty (20%). Also trying to figure out the details of the lease.
One question I have is this: If we only own 3/16 of the mineral rights for our 60 acres (100% of the surface), can we put a clause in the lease that states they do not have surface access? My guess is that we cannot, since we are minority mineral rights owners.
Another question about lease details: I've heard we should strike the Bona fide offer and Warranty clauses, and make sure the royalties are calculated off GROSS not NET proceeds. Has anyone heard or done similar, or have any other recommendations as far as how to protect yourself in the lease agreement?
I appreciate any info!