What Is a Mortgage REIT?

What Is a Mortgage REIT?

By Charles Joseph | Editor, Financial Affairs
Reviewed by Corey Michael | Senior Financial Analyst

A Mortgage REIT, also known as a Real Estate Investment Trust, is a type of company that either owns or finances income-producing real estate. Unlike regular REITs that own commercial properties such as apartments and offices, Mortgage REITs primarily deal with investment and ownership of property mortgages. These can be either residential or commercial real estate loans. The Mortgage REITs earn income from the interest paid on these mortgage loans. Like other forms of REITs, Mortgage REITs are legally required to distribute at least 90% of taxable income as shareholder dividends.

Related Questions

1. How do Mortgage REITs make money?

Mortgage REITs make money by investing in and owning property mortgages. They earn income from the interest paid on these mortgage loans. Additionally, they can also profit from buying and selling mortgage-backed securities.

2. What is the difference between an Equity REIT and a Mortgage REIT?

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An Equity REIT invests in and owns real estate properties and makes income from the rent they collect from tenants. In contrast, a Mortgage REIT owns and invests in property mortgages from which they earn income from the interest paid on these mortgage loans.

3. What are the risks associated with Mortgage REITs?

Investing in Mortgage REITs comes with several risks. These include interest rate risk where changes in interest rates can impact the value of the mortgages held by the REIT, credit risk if borrowers fail to repay their loans, and prepayment risk where loans are paid off earlier than expected.

4. How does a Mortgage REIT differ from a traditional bank?

A Mortgage REIT differs from a traditional bank in that it does not accept deposits or offer traditional banking services. Instead, it operates by buying, selling and owning mortgages or mortgage-backed securities, generating income through the interest on these investments.

5. Can anyone invest in a Mortgage REIT?

Yes, anyone can invest in a Mortgage REIT as long as they are willing to take on the associated risks. Mortgage REITs are publicly traded and can be bought and sold like any other stock on the stock exchange.