Learn More About REITs

Real Estate Working for You

The REIT Way

How Do REITs Work?

REITs Everywhere, Everyday

Benefits of Equity REITs


Frequently Asked Questions

What is a REIT?

REITs, or Real Estate Investment Trusts, are modeled after mutual funds, and provide an investment opportunity for everyday Americans to buy into real estate and real estate-related projects that would otherwise be dominated by Wall Street, banks or hedge funds. Today, 145 million Americans invest in real estate through REITs through mutual funds and ETFs in retirement savings, pension plans and other investment funds.

What are the benefits of REITs?

REITs give Americans the ability to own income-producing real estate; they offer the opportunity for competitive returns, asset diversification, and strong dividends. REITs are also effective at raising the capital needed to help finance projects that revitalize neighborhoods, enable the digital economy, power community essential services, and build the infrastructure of tomorrow, while creating jobs along the way.

Where are REITs located?

REITs own real estate in all 50 states3 and in countries around the world. In fact, 40 nations around the world have embraced REIT-based real estate investment,4 through a combination of legislation and market practices (including all G7 countries).


How does a company qualify as a REIT?

To qualify as a REIT, a company must comply with specific rules made by Congress and regulations set forth by the Internal Revenue Service.5 REITs are: 

  • Subjected to tax just at the investor level, like partnerships
  • Must be widely held by shareholders
  • Must primarily own or finance real estate or real estate-related projects
  • Must be invested in real estate for the long-term, i.e. cannot “flip” real estate
  • Must distribute its earnings to shareholders

Post Properties - Post South End - Charlotte, NC

CNL Lifestyle Properties, Inc. - Hawaiian Waters Adventure Park - Kapolei, HI

How many REITs are there?

As of Dec. 31, 2021 there are 217 REITs in the FTSE Nareit All REITs Index with a total equity market capitalization of more than $1.7 trillion.

Are there different kinds of REITs?

Yes. There are two primary types of REITs: Equity REITs and mREITs. Some REITs are publicly traded, some are sold to the public directly but not traded on the stock exchange, and others are private. To learn more about the different kinds of REITs, click here.

Aimco Properties - The Yacht Club at Brickell - Miami, FL

Cousins Properties - Prominade - Atlanta, GA

Crown Castle International - Tower

Do countries besides the United States have REITs?

Because of the success of REITs in the U.S., nearly 40 other countries have modeled a REIT structure after the U.S.

*Past performance does not guarantee future results. Information should not be construed as investment advice and is provided for informational purposes only.