Doesn’t it make you nervous to be in the same room with thousands of dollars worth of diamonds, and unable to touch them?


REITs [Real Estate Investment Trust] are sold like stocks, and they’re held by many individuals and institutional investors. You might have a REIT in your retirement fund. REITs are trusts that own and develop property and earn rental income. […] “They are forced by law — a law created in 1960 — that provides that real estate investment trusts have to meet certain tests,” says Brad Thomas, editor of the Intelligent REIT Investor. “And if they do, they are forced to pay out 90 percent of their taxable income in the form of dividends.” Those dividends are a regular stream of income, and they’re what make REITs attractive to investors.

I put down $513.94 on a REIT index fund. It’s basically a smorgasbord of many different REITs. It contains what you might expect — REITs that own apartment buildings and shopping centers. But Thomas says the range of REITs today goes far beyond that, “from billboards to prisons to cell towers, campus housing. Even solar is on the horizon potentially.”

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