Sam Landy, president and CEO of UMH Properties, Inc. (NYSE: UMH), participated in a video interview in conjunction with Nareit’s REITworld: 2020 Annual Conference.
Landy attributed UMH’s high rent collection throughout 2020 to many of the REIT’s residents coming from two-income households or being essential workers, which kept them employed throughout the pandemic. He also said that UMH estimates that 20% of its residents are on a fixed income and able to pay rent regardless of the employment rate.
“We’ve had over 95% rental home occupancy and over 98% rent collection. We’ve laid a foundation,” Landy said, noting that UMH is expecting continued success in 2021, including adding about 900 rental homes and operating at the same or a lower expense ratio.
Landy said that UMH obtained new Fannie Mae mortgages that accepted rental homes and that the REIT’s cost of funds will decrease from 8% to 2.62% from Fannie Mae debt. As a result in 2021, Landy said UMH will have increased operating income and lower interest cost, and potentially increased sales and sales profits.
Landy added that although it’s difficult to predict the timing of acquisitions, UMH is now diversifying its geographic reach in order to make larger deals.