Thursday, May 14, 2015

Three REITs I Picked Last Week

After scooping up some shares in 3M (MMM) last week, I didn’t expect to make more purchases this month. After all, April is usually an expensive month due to the amount of taxes I have to pay. June is also another expensive month, due to estimated taxes I have to pay on non-salary income I generate. In addition, I try to do most of the work towards maxing out 401 (k) early in the year. I leave room to max-out a quarter to third or so for the latter part of the year.

This week however I saw some weakness in a few REITs I have been monitoring. When I first discussed REITs in late 2014, I expressed my hope for declines in stock prices, similar to what we saw in 2013. Luckily, my hopes are starting to materialize. There is fear that interest rates will rise, which will reduce FFO/share, since cost of capital to acquire new properties will be higher. While interest rates will likely increase at some point in the future, I strongly doubt this will happen in the US in the near-term, especially when Europe and Japan are essentially flooding their economies with QE type stimulus.

I added to my positions in the following real estate investment trusts (REITs):

Omega Healthcare Investors, Inc. (OHI) is a real estate investment trust that invests in healthcare facilities, primarily in long-term healthcare facilities. This REIT has managed to boost distributions for 13 years in a row. The ten year dividend growth rate is 10.90%/year. Omega Healthcare Investors currently sells for 12.70 times funds from operations (FFO) and yields 6%. On a side note, Yahoo Finance shows the yield as 2%. This is incorrect - the quarterly dividend is 54 cents/share, but the last dividend that OHI paid was prorated for 1 month. I last analyzed Omega Healthcare Investors in 2013, and am working on refreshing my review. Please stay tuned.

W. P. Carey Inc. (WPC) is a real estate investment trust which invests in commercial properties that are generally triple-net leased to single corporate tenants including office, warehouse, industrial, logistics, retail, hotel, R&D, and self-storage properties. The company leases those properties back under long-term sale-lease back agreements. . This REIT has managed to boost distributions for 18 years in a row. The ten year dividend growth rate is 7.50%/year. W. P. Carey currently sells for 13.40 times FFO and yields 5.90%. Check my analysis of W.P. Carey for more details.

HCP, Inc. (HCP) is an independent hybrid real estate investment trust which invests in properties serving the healthcare industry including sectors of healthcare such as senior housing, life science, medical office, hospital and skilled nursing. The fund also invests in mezzanine loans and other debt instruments. . This REIT has managed to boost distributions for 30 years in a row. The ten year dividend growth rate is 2.70%/year. HCP currently sells for 13.10 times FFO and yields 5.70%. Check my analysis of HCP for more details. Despite issues with the company’s largest tenant, I think the dividend is safe and can grow over time. However, this one requires closer monitoring than the other two mentioned above.

I am not afraid of rising interest rates. Rising interest will increase the cost of capital, but they also signify the fact that business activity is better. If there is more business, companies hire more, need more space and probably will be able to afford higher lease payments. This is where examining the debt maturities of companies you are interested in investing could make sense. I know for a fact that a large portion of debt issued by companies is longer term in nature. When you sell a 10 year bond to finance a real estate purchase at a fixed rate, or when you get a 30 year mortgage, your interest rate is largely fixed. Therefore, you do not need to worry about interest rates increasing for the length of that loan term. In addition, I expect interest rates to increase gradually, which would allow companies to adapt when they need to access credit markets again.

Full Disclosure: Long OHI, WPC, HCP

Relevant Articles:

Four Dependable Dividend Stocks I Bought Last Week
Six Dividend Investments I Made Last Week
Five Things to Look For in a Real Estate Investment Trust
Are we in a REIT bubble?
Four High Yield REITs for current income

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