Net Lease the Fifth Major Commercial Real Estate Type?

I read an interesting article in Globest.com this week talking about how demand for single tenant net lease properties is likely to remain high. That point is nothing new to those who’ve been watching net lease recently.

However, what caught my eye was a provocative quote by a STNL expert, Sam Alison of Stan Johnson Company. Mr. Alison asserts that net lease is “now one of the five major commercial real estate types, along with apartments, office, industrial, and retail.”  It is an interesting thought.

Check out our single tenant net lease valuation model in Excel

Corporate sale leasebacks are a popular form of single tenant net lease.

What Makes STNL Popular

Characteristics unique to net lease properties such as consistent, predictable cash flows, very long lease terms, institutional credit rated tenants, and easy management have attracted institutional players who once shied away from net lease properties.

As a result, sales of net lease retail properties have nearly tripled to $70 billion in the 12-month period ending March 31, 2014 compared to just three years ago.  Mr. Alison proffers that this meteoric increase in interest for net lease warrants an elevated status.

But is high demand for a product type sufficient to elevate it to the same status as the majors (office, industrial, apartment, and multi-tenant retail)? Maybe. But if that is the case, shouldn’t hotel than also be considered a major commercial real estate type?