REITs VS Fractional Ownership – The Big Picture On How They Work

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Investing in Real Estate entails an obligation that a person can’t afford on his own. Most people opt for loans to invest in commercial and residential properties because they know that it’s one of the best ways to secure their financial future.

Compared to residential properties that buyers may use for themselves or for letting on rent, CRE Properties generally require a lot of investment upfront. Commercial Real Estate Properties have prospects to generate higher income than residential properties.

While investing in CRE properties was once a privilege only available to HNIs/UHNIs, the introduction of concepts like Real Estate Investment Trust (REITs) and Fractional Ownership has enabled investors to buy premium CRE properties in an affordable financial segment.

But out of the two investment options, which one is better for the investment?

Both Fractional Ownership and REITs allows investors to procure premium commercial properties and gain monetary benefits generated by monthly rental income, therefore helping them to secure long-term wealth. However, they operate differently.

REIT is much like mutual funds.

Three years later there are now three popular REITS - Mindspace REIT, Brookfield REIT and Embassy REIT. REITs as an investment option have gained significant popularity among institutions & retail investors. These three REITS cover 87 million sq. ft. of commercial real estate assets– Mindspace 31 million sq. ft, Embassy 42 million sq. ft. and Brookfield 14 million sq. ft.

What is Fractional Real Estate Investing?

“It is estimated that over the next three years, the fractional ownership market's worth will reach five billion dollars. This is a shot in the arm for the real estate industry,” Shiv Parekh, the founder of Hbits.

According to data compiled by hBits (fractional ownership realty firm) fractional ownership has seen a surge over the last five years with an estimated total transaction of Rs 750 crores. Out of this, Rs 350 crores worth of transactions took place in 2020, i.e., after the first Covid lockdown was imposed.

REITs Vs Fractional Ownership

Sr. No Real Estate Investment Trusts Fractional Real Estate Investing
1. REITS are directly monitored by SEBI Fractional ownership does not come under the purview of SEBI
2. 80% of the funds should be invested in developed and income generation properties There are no barriers here. Investment allowed in developed as well as under-construction properties
3. Investors have no control to choose the type of properties Investors have full control and flexibility to choose the type of properties
4. No upfront costs and maintenance charges are charged They are charged brokerages and maintenance costs
5. Minimum Investment amount is as low as 10-15k Minimum investment amount is high around 25lacs
6. REITS are very liquid and the returns are comparatively consistent Higher income potential but the returns usually keeps fluctuating

The bottom line, of course, is to do due diligence on the asset class before investing. Fractional property and REITs both work differently and give investors different benefits. Ultimately, it all depends on your goals for your investment.

Article authored by: Team Propfynd

Date: 23rd Nov, 2022

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