Net Lease REITs: Six Leading Net Lease REITs

The real estate investment trust (REIT) landscape is vast, but among its sectors, net lease properties have carved a unique niche. These properties are typically leased to tenants under long-term contracts where the tenant is responsible for most, if not all, property expenses, including maintenance, taxes, and insurance. This structure provides the REIT with a predictable stream of income.

In the net lease sector, six REITs stand out due to their size, portfolio quality, and performance. Let’s delve into these six giants: National Retail (NYSE:NNN), Realty Income (NYSE:O), Spirit Realty (NYSE:SRC), STORE Capital (NYSE:STOR), VEREIT (NYSE:VER), and W.P. Carey (NYSE:WPC).

1. National Retail (NYSE:NNN)

  • Market Cap: $8.11 billion
  • Overview: With a focus on retail properties, National Retail boasts a diverse portfolio. Their tenants range from convenience stores to fitness centers, ensuring a balanced revenue stream.
  • Strength: Their long-standing reputation and strategic property selection have made them a favorite among investors seeking stability.

2. Realty Income (NYSE:O)

  • Market Cap: $26.05 billion
  • Overview: Known as “The Monthly Dividend Company,” Realty Income has a diversified portfolio of over 6,000 properties located in 49 states. Their tenants span 50 different industries.
  • Strength: Their monthly dividend payout and consistent performance have made them a darling for income-seeking investors.

3. Spirit Realty (NYSE:SRC)

  • Market Cap: $4.93 billion
  • Overview: Spirit Realty focuses on single-tenant, operationally essential real estate. Their portfolio is diversified across various sectors, including retail, industrial, and office spaces.
  • Strength: Their focus on “operationally essential” real estate means they invest in properties crucial to the operational success of their tenants, leading to longer lease terms and stability.

4. STORE Capital (NYSE:STOR)

  • Market Cap: $8.14 billion
  • Overview: STORE Capital invests in Single Tenant Operational Real Estate, which is real estate essential to the tenant’s operational success.
  • Strength: Their unique investment strategy focuses on properties that are not easily replaced in a tenant’s operational line-up, ensuring long-term lease commitments.


  • Market Cap: Approximately $28.62 billion (based on the current exchange rate)
  • Overview: With a diverse portfolio that includes retail, restaurant, office, and industrial properties, VEREIT is a global player in the net lease sector.
  • Strength: Their global reach and diversified portfolio position them well to weather economic downturns in specific sectors or regions.

6. W.P. Carey (NYSE:WPC)

  • Market Cap: $14.5 billion
  • Overview: W.P. Carey stands out for its investment strategy that spans different types of properties, including industrial, warehouse, office, and retail spaces.
  • Strength: Their diversified approach, both in terms of property type and geography (with a presence in the U.S. and Europe), offers a balanced risk profile.

The net lease sector offers investors a unique combination of stability and growth. These six REITs, with their strategic portfolios and robust performance, are testament to the strength of the net lease model. Investors looking for a mix of income and potential capital appreciation should consider these REITs as part of a diversified investment strategy.

Investors can also acquire the same net lease assets that these top-tier Net Lease REITs own. If you are considering owning an asset lease to an investment-grade net lease tenant. Visit Investment Grade Income Property to learn more 

Physicians Realty Trust Looking to Medical Office Buildings to Fuel Future Growth

John Thomas, president and CEO of Physicians Realty Trust (NYSE: DOC), participated in a video interview at Nareit’s REITworld: 2019 Annual Conference in Los Angeles.

Thomas discussed Physicians Realty Trust’s positive resolution with LifeCare Facilities, which previously operated its three long-term acute care hospitals, following that company’s bankruptcy. He said the REIT has fully recovered, with all leases “assumed as-is,” and was even repaid for all legal costs.