U.S. builders hoard mineral rights under new homes


SLM
#1
U.S. builders hoard mineral rights under new homes



Michelle Conlin and Brian Grow, Reuters

Oct 11, 2013 , Last Updated: 10:43 AM ET

NAPLES, FLA. - Robert and Julie Davidson fell hard for the gleaming new house at the Valencia Golf and Country Club in Naples, Florida. They loved the way the palm-fringed, Spanish-style home backed up to the fifth-hole fairway. And they were taken with the three-bedroom's high ceilings and open plan. Plus the neighborhood - with its power-washed driveways, blooming hibiscus and guarded gatehouse - seemed all "dressed up."
But when the Davidsons paid $255,385 in 2011 for the house on Birdie Drive, they didn't know that they had, in essence, bought only from the ground up, and that their homebuilder, D.R. Horton, had kept everything underneath.
"Wait a second, wait a second," Robert Davidson said after a reporter told him that a search of county records showed that D.R. Horton still owned the oil, natural gas, water and other natural resources beneath his and his neighbors' homes. "Let me sit down a minute here. They have the mineral rights to the land I'm on?"
In golf clubs, gated communities and other housing developments across the United States, tens of thousands of families like the Davidsons have in recent years moved into new homes where their developers or homebuilders, with little or no prior disclosure, kept all the underlying mineral rights for themselves, a Reuters review of county property records in 25 states shows. In dozens of cases, the buyers were in the dark.


More here:

U.S. builders hoard mineral rights under new homes


It is a pretty long article, I was reading it at lunchtime. Is this something new? Seems very sneaky to me. I know caveat emptor and all that but I can completely understand why someone would not think to check for the mineral rights to their home.
 
DaSleeper
#2
Read...... Mining Regulations | Minerals and Metals Sector
 
taxslave
#3
Big deal. Almost no one in Canada owns the mineral rights under their home. I would have to look see who owns it under mine right now. At one time Weldwood did then Texico. I believe CPRail owned them at one time.
 
IdRatherBeSkiing
#4
But they can't come and drill for said minerals even if they have the rights. So it's not a big deal and they probably saved some money by not having them included.
 
taxslave
+3
#5  Top Rated Post
Quote: Originally Posted by IdRatherBeSkiing View Post

But they can't come and drill for said minerals even if they have the rights. So it's not a big deal and they probably saved some money by not having them included.

Yes they can.
 
IdRatherBeSkiing
#6
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslave View Post

Yes they can.

So they can just bulldoze down your home without compensation?
 
Sons of Liberty
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by SLM View Post

U.S. builders hoard mineral rights under new homes



Michelle Conlin and Brian Grow, Reuters

Oct 11, 2013 , Last Updated: 10:43 AM ET

NAPLES, FLA. - Robert and Julie Davidson fell hard for the gleaming new house at the Valencia Golf and Country Club in Naples, Florida. They loved the way the palm-fringed, Spanish-style home backed up to the fifth-hole fairway. And they were taken with the three-bedroom's high ceilings and open plan. Plus the neighborhood - with its power-washed driveways, blooming hibiscus and guarded gatehouse - seemed all "dressed up."
But when the Davidsons paid $255,385 in 2011 for the house on Birdie Drive, they didn't know that they had, in essence, bought only from the ground up, and that their homebuilder, D.R. Horton, had kept everything underneath.
"Wait a second, wait a second," Robert Davidson said after a reporter told him that a search of county records showed that D.R. Horton still owned the oil, natural gas, water and other natural resources beneath his and his neighbors' homes. "Let me sit down a minute here. They have the mineral rights to the land I'm on?"
In golf clubs, gated communities and other housing developments across the United States, tens of thousands of families like the Davidsons have in recent years moved into new homes where their developers or homebuilders, with little or no prior disclosure, kept all the underlying mineral rights for themselves, a Reuters review of county property records in 25 states shows. In dozens of cases, the buyers were in the dark.


More here:

U.S. builders hoard mineral rights under new homes


It is a pretty long article, I was reading it at lunchtime. Is this something new? Seems very sneaky to me. I know caveat emptor and all that but I can completely understand why someone would not think to check for the mineral rights to their home.

Soooo all these lawyers representing their clients' interests are in on it???
 
SLM
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by DaSleeper View Post

Read...... Mining Regulations | Minerals and Metals Sector

Yeah, here, I was just really surprised at it in the U.S. I'm guessing it's something kind of underhanded down there? Or am I wrong about that?
 
skookumchuck
+1
#9
Quote: Originally Posted by IdRatherBeSkiing View Post

So they can just bulldoze down your home without compensation?

If it were a large enough or expensive enough deposit they could buy you out cheaper than you want. It seldom happens but is not unheard of. Worked real well on native owned land.
 
SLM
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by Sons of Liberty View Post

Soooo all these lawyers representing their clients' interests are in on it???

Well they make some mention in the article that, apparently, a lot of people buy houses without using a lawyer. That, to me, seems rather stupid. It's a contract and often times it can be a lengthy and complex one. So that's on the buyers, absolutely.

It just seems sneaky and kind of underhanded to me. Unless I'm really off the mark on how I understand property ownership in the U.S., but isn't it 'your home is your castle' kind of thing?
 
petros
#11
Quote: Originally Posted by IdRatherBeSkiing View Post

So they can just bulldoze down your home without compensation?

They move it to a nice new location.
 
Sons of Liberty
#12
Quote: Originally Posted by SLM View Post

Well they make some mention in the article that, apparently, a lot of people buy houses without using a lawyer. That, to me, seems rather stupid. It's a contract and often times it can be a lengthy and complex one. So that's on the buyers, absolutely.

If people are stupid enough not to be represented, then screw them.

Quote: Originally Posted by SLM View Post

It just seems sneaky and kind of underhanded to me. Unless I'm really off the mark on how I understand property ownership in the U.S., but isn't it 'your home is your castle' kind of thing?

If I were any of them I would hand over the case to the ACLU and see if there is a Constitutional basis for reversal.
 
DaSleeper
#13
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslave View Post

Big deal. Almost no one in Canada owns the mineral rights under their home. I would have to look see who owns it under mine right now. At one time Weldwood did then Texico. I believe CPRail owned them at one time.

I don't know about everywhere else in Canada, but in my neck of the woods in Northern Ontario, in order to attract settlers before and after ww2, farmers' lots included mineral rights.
 
taxslave
#14
Quote: Originally Posted by DaSleeper View Post

I don't know about everywhere else in Canada, but in my neck of the woods in Northern Ontario, in order to attract settlers before and after ww2, farmers' lots included mineral rights.

Question is who owns the mineral rights now. That happened in BC as well but mineral rights like water rights do not transfer automatically.
 
skookumchuck
+1
#15
Quote: Originally Posted by DaSleeper View Post

I don't know about everywhere else in Canada, but in my neck of the woods in Northern Ontario, in order to attract settlers before and after ww2, farmers' lots included mineral rights.

Generally not in the rest of the country. Railroads owned nearly all of it originally.
 
SLM
+1
#16
Quote: Originally Posted by Sons of Liberty View Post

If people are stupid enough not to be represented, then screw them.

Fair enough, I'm not defending them, lol. I was just questioning if the practice itself, what the developer/builder was/is doing, was exactly legal.

Quote:

If I were any of them I would hand over the case to the ACLU and see if there is a Constitutional basis for reversal.

I think one of the developers in the article had ceased the practice while the matter was before the courts which make me wonder if the developer may have thought it might be a questionable practice in the first place. I'm not trying to lay it all on them, the buyer takes his/her share, but it does take two to tango.
 
taxslave
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by SLM View Post

Fair enough, I'm not defending them, lol. I was just questioning if the practice itself, what the developer/builder was/is doing, was exactly legal.

I think one of the developers in the article had ceased the practice while the matter was before the courts which make me wonder if the developer may have thought it might be a questionable practice in the first place. I'm not trying to lay it all on them, the buyer takes his/her share, but it does take two to tango.

It should show up on a title search. Any easements, encroachments etc do. Since mineral rights are registered it would be pretty difficult to hide ownership.
 
DaSleeper
#18
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslave View Post

Question is who owns the mineral rights now. That happened in BC as well but mineral rights like water rights do not transfer automatically.

My father wasn't the original owner when he bought our farm in 1945, but I remember when he sold it in 1963, reading the deed and it had a patent # which meant that it included mineral rights.
 
taxslave
#19
Quote: Originally Posted by DaSleeper View Post

My father wasn't the original owner when he bought our farm in 1945, but I remember when he sold it in 1963, reading the deed and it had a patent # which meant that it included mineral rights.

Be interesting to know if the current owner still has mineral rights or if the property has been subdevided who owns the mineral rights to each lot.
 
PoliticalNick
#20
In Canada the allodial rights as it is called all belong to the crown and have been, through the constitution, been handed to the provinces. In the US most allodial rights are held under 'eminent domain' which is once again the govt. Basically since about the 60's no person has had any mineral rights and really only has the surface rights. Further to all that in Canada even the surface rights aren't truly held by the homeowner, they are granted 'right of use' while actual ownership remains with the crown.

Quote:

Most property ownership in the common law world is fee simple. Land is "held of the Crown" in England and Wales and the Commonwealth realms. In the United States, land is subject to eminent domain by federal, state and local government, and subject to the imposition of taxes by state and/or local governments, and there is thus no true allodial land.

 
wulfie68
#21
Quote: Originally Posted by PoliticalNick View Post

In Canada the allodial rights as it is called all belong to the crown and have been, through the constitution, been handed to the provinces. In the US most allodial rights are held under 'eminent domain' which is once again the govt. Basically since about the 60's no person has had any mineral rights and really only has the surface rights. Further to all that in Canada even the surface rights aren't truly held by the homeowner, they are granted 'right of use' while actual ownership remains with the crown.

About Freehold Mineral Rights

Again, I can't speak for most of the country but this sums up most of the mineral rights issues for Alberta (I am assuming Saskatchewan will be fairly similar and possibly most of Manitoba). Some of it was influenced by early federal Acts, brought in by Sir John A MacDonald, in his quest to see the CPR completed. One thing they omitted was the land owned, mineral rights and all, by the Hudson's Bay company. I can't remember how much land they received from the Crown, but it was fairly extensive, and led to the formation of Hudson's Bay Oil and Gas (later bought out by Dome Petroleum who was bought out by Amoco, who was bought out by BP).