More Opportunities Await Healthcare REITs

Mary Hogan-Preusse, managing director & co-head of Americas Real Estate, APG Asset Management US Inc., is excited about healthcare REITs and the transactions they made during the beginning of the year.

In a video interview with at REITWorld 2011: NAREIT's Annual Convention For All Things REIT in Dallas at the Hilton Anatole hotel, Hogan-Preusse, said the healthcare sector has only tapped the surface of the opportunities for buying assets from the operators.

"It's the one area of the economy, where people have to agree, is definitely going to be expanding," she said.

She noted, however, that there are some issues that concern all REIT sectors, including the global outlook and the American economy headed into the recession. Hogan-Preusse added that the access to capital is going to be "the great financial crisis 2.0."

"I think that's going to be something that affects REITs, and we'll start to hear about the 'haves vs. the have nots' again in terms of access to capital," she said.

Since many of the larger REITs have exposure to the Washington, D.C. region, she said investors are concerned about a shrinking government and what that could mean.

"I have to say that I haven't seen the government shrink in my 20 years at this," said Hogan-Preusse. "Even for the government to shrink, you have to hire consultants to help it shrink. I don't think it will be as bad as some people think it ultimately will be, but we'll have to watch."

In terms of volatility, she said that while it's been a huge concern for investors, she thinks people are getting more comfortable with REITs.

"The moves can be startling - we've been in this volatile phase for long enough - but I do think the returns remain very good," Hogan-Preusse said.