2 ways you can outsource your property investing

Australians have a love affair with property. Most dislike or are afraid of the stock market. But what if I told you that you could invest in property in the stock market? Without the hassle of fees, maintenance, rates, insurance, dealing with tenants, and so on?

Well actually, those things are still there. It’s just that you don’t have to deal with them – the company does that. Consider owning a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) like these two:

Westfield Corp Ltd (ASX: WFD)

Westfield Corp owns the Westfield-branded malls in Europe and the USA. It’s big business and the company is currently selling its ‘regional’ centres to focus on its more important ‘flagship’ centres which are more valuable and profitable.

The company has a strong mix of tenants with occupancy at 96% in the flagship portfolio, and 93% in the regional portfolio. Westfield’s net assets are valued at US$4.60 per security (the company reports in USD) as of the February annual report and it has gearing of 35%.

Scentre Group (ASX: SCG)

Scentre Group owns the Westfield shopping centres in Australia and New Zealand, and has over $3 billion in its development pipeline. Like Westfield Corp, Scentre has been divesting non-core assets to focus on its more promising prospects, although with occupancy at maximum, most of Scentre’s future growth will have to come from development and rent increases.

Scentre has 99.5% occupancy and gearing of 33%. Its Net Tangible Assets are valued at $3.67 per security as of the February annual report.

Foolish Takeaway

There are plenty of viable ways to invest in property on the ASX, and there are a number of property trusts that specialise in all kinds of assets like liquor stores, long-tenure tenants, or Bunnings warehouses (the trust owns the property which it leases to these business tenants). This can give greater flexibility and specialisation to the would-be property investor, just with less legwork.

Get started in shares with our top 3 stock picks right now:

A Big, Fat, Fully Franked Dividend

This company's dividend is almost the stuff of legends. Since it started paying dividends in 2007, it has increased its payout to shareholders every single year, a run that includes 21 consecutive dividend increases.

Based on the last 12-months of dividends, its shares are currently offering a fully-franked 4.8% yield, which grosses up to almost 7% when those franking credits are included. And in stark contrast to the likes of Commonwealth Bank and Telstra, this company just increased its dividend by over 13%, and guided for 2017 profits to grow by 20%!

Discover the name of this "new breed" of blue chip along with 2 others in our new FREE report "The Motley Fool's Top 3 Blue Chips Stocks For 2017."

Click here to receive your copy.

Motley Fool contributor Sean O'Neill has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

Two New Stock Picks Every Month!

Not to alarm you, but you’re about to miss a very important event! Chief Investment Advisor Scott Phillips and his team at Motley Fool Share Advisor are about to reveal their latest official stock recommendation. The premium “buy alert” will be unveiled to members and you can be among the first to act on the tip.

Don’t let this opportunity pass you by – this is your chance to get in early!

Simply enter your email now to find out how you can get instant access.

By clicking this button, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. We will use your email address only to keep you informed about updates to our website and about other products and services we think might interest you. You can unsubscribe from Take Stock at anytime. Please refer to our Financial Services Guide (FSG) for more information.