Investing in REITs

REITs offer investors the benefits of real estate investment along with the ease and advantages of investing in publicly traded stock. REITs have historically provided investors dividend-based income, competitive market performance, transparency, liquidity, inflation protection and portfolio diversification.

Why Invest in REITs

The REIT approach to real estate investment offers a number of benefits to investment portfolios, including a history of competitive performance, liquidity, dividend-based income, diversification and transparency. REITs are total return investments. REITs are required by law to distribute each year to their shareholders at least 90 percent of their taxable income. Thus, REITs tend to historically be among those companies paying the highest dividends. The dividends come primarily from the relatively stable and predictable stream of contractual rents paid by the tenants who occupy the REIT's properties.

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How to Invest in a REIT

An individual may invest in a REIT, which is listed on a major stock exchange, by purchasing shares through a securities dealer. As with other publicly traded securities, investors may purchase common stock, preferred stock or debt securities. An investor can enlist the services of a broker, investment advisor or financial planner to help analyze his or her financial objectives. These professionals may be able to recommend appropriate REIT investments for the investor. Investors may also invest in a public non-listed or private REIT.

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REIT Directory

Investors can use our searchable REIT directory to learn more about the individual real estate companies that make up this more than $1 trillion industry. Investors can research earnings and performance metrics, explore real estate portfolio holdings and read news about each company.

Explore the REIT directory

List of REIT Funds

Approximately 87 million Americans own REITs through their retirements savings and other investment funds. View our searchable list of REIT and real estate funds to learn more about the actively and passively managed investment opportunities. 

Explore REIT funds

A rooftop farm in Bethesda, MD. - Federal Realty


Nareit takes seriously its role in encouraging development and adoption of effective sustainability practices in REIT-based real estate investment. Going forward, Nareit will build on its existing ESG efforts such as the Leader in the Light Awards and the ESG Forum, while also seeking out partnerships with like-minded. Just as it communicates the investment benefits of REITs to the broader public, Nareit will continue to highlight the REIT industry’s contributions to sustainable real estate ownership and operations.

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REIT Assets by State

With more than 200,000 properties owned by REITs in the U.S., you can find a REIT-owned property near you. REITs Across America is an interactive map highlighting REIT-owned assets in every state and major metropolitan area. 

View REIT assets by state

Global Real Estate

The real estate investment marketplace is changing around the world because of the widespread adoption of the REIT in more than 35 countries. REITs comprise 98 percent of the headline Real Estate sectore in the Global Industry Classification Standard. In addition to numerous active and passively managed domestic funds (both open- and closed-end), new global funds are increasingly popping up, offering an expanded range of investment opportunities.

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