National Retail Properties is a REIT focused on retail-oriented properties across the United States. The company invests in high-quality retail properties subject to long-term leases that generate stable, consistent, predictable income. The company laid claim to 3,305 properties enclosing 33.8 million square feet of space in 48 states leased to 380 tenants engaged in 37 trades as of October 2022.
National Retail Properties was formed in 1984 as Golden Corral Realty Corporation. The company was intended as a means for employees to invest in Golden Corral but it soon took on a life of its own. The company split from its parent in 1993 and then became a REIT in 1998. Since then a number of mergers and acquisitions resulted in the company that is traded today.
National Retail Properties seeks to generate returns for shareholders through capital appreciation and dividends and is one of the most stable dividend payers in the REIT universe. The company made its 33rd consecutive distribution increase in 2022 ranking it 3rd on the list of REITs with sustained annual dividend increases. In regard to all publicly listed companies, there are less than 90 which have increased their payout for as many years or more as National Retail Properties. The compound annual growth rate runs in the range of 4% to 5%.
National Retail Properties is not limited in scope to the type of business it will lease to. The top four sectors occupying its space, however, are convenience stores, automotive-related, full-service, and limited-service restaurants which command a lion’s share of retail dollars. These segments made up nearly 49% of the portfolio in 2022 with no tenant making up more than 5% of the total income.
The top three tenants at the time are 7-11, Mister Car Wash, and Camping World followed by L.A. Fitness, GPM Investments (convenience), and Dave & Buster’s. The firm's average lease runs in the range of 10.6 years and occupancy runs high and above 99%. Properties are all single-occupier and leased on a net basis. Most properties are leased on a triple-net basis which means National Retail Properties is insulated from taxes, maintenance, and insurance costs. Other notable tenants include Yum! Brands and Wendy’s.
National Retail Properties uses leverage to enhance its returns. The company’s debt ratio is low however and its debt carries an investment-grade rating from Standard & Poors and Moody’s.