Best of luck with this.
Dirk T Knudsen
Re\max Hall of Fame
#1 rated Re\Max team in Oregon
"The Real Estate Doctor"
Dirk has the best answer on this -- first the price should be different if you do not purchase the mineral rights. second it is NEVER in your favor for this type of a deal. I have a friend that experience this in Colorado..and he has lived to regret everyday that he didn't spend (going on memory for a deal that happened 15 years ago) the extra $15K per acre to own the mineral rights on a 500 acre tract of land in Trinidad NM.
This happens all the time in states where mineral rights can be conveyed.
You may want to speak with a knowledgeable Local real estate broker who can evaluate your property with and without the conveyance of the mineral rights. (Each right of ownership in real property has its own value)
You can then determine the value of what you are purchasing.
Best of luck
This sounds like a case for an attorney and a psychologist. Why does he want the rights and how does he plan to use them? It just sounds odd and unrealistic. The only way I can see it working is if the mineral rights are along the line of a option to buy. If valuable minerals are discovered, the seller would have to buy your home back to access them? Talk to a Virginia attorney.
Plus when they mine for coal, or suck out gas or oil they leave a hole in the ground. Over time that hole can collapse. Out west somewhere there is a town that is literally falling into the ground from mining in the 1800's.
Personally, I would not buy a place that I did not own 100%. That rules out duplexes as you do not own half of the house. If the other owner lets his half fall into the cellar from neglect what can you do? The same thing applies to lost mineral rights. If you give them away and someone sucks your well dry, digs ugly holes, strip mines, or sticks oil derricks over all of your land what can you do? NOTHING!!! they have the rights.
You could potentially never have any issue with this in several lifetimes. So it is in reality a non-issue. But what if 1 year from now they come in and mess up your land? What do you do then?
If I wanted the place I would say I buy it, but that is ALL of it, Mineral rights included. Take it or forget it. Then be prepared to walk away.
Just things to think about.