There’s plenty of talk in the medical office building (MOB) sales sector that even though demand remains as high as ever for the product type, the volume has been quiet so far in 2019. Second quarter (Q2) and year-to-date MOB sales statistics compiled by healthcare real estate (HRE) data firm Revista, which provides a variety of HRE data to subscribers, confirm this notion.
The portfolio includes several class A assets such as the Harker Heights Medical Pavilion which is 100% leased and on the campus of Seton Medical Center Harker Heights.
The Big Three healthcare REITs – HCP, Welltower and Ventas –remained disciplined with acquisitions while non-listed REIT fundraising has limited their supply of new investment capital.
In the medical office building (MOB) space, large portfolio sales involving publicly traded companies usually grab most of the headlines. Recent blockbuster deals include Physicians Realty Trust’s (NYSE: DOC) $700 million acquisition of more than 50 MOBs from Catholic Health Initiatives in 2016 and Healthcare Trust of America’s (NYSE: HTA) $2.25 billion purchase of more than 70 medical office properties from Duke Realty Corp. (NYSE: DRE) in recent months.
n 2013, the Healthcare REITs within the 2016 top owners report had funded roughly $0.5B worth of construction projects that were considered “in progress” at 12/31/2016. That $0.5B represented just 0.7% of their total gross real estate assets.
Record MOB sales in the first half of nearly $5.5 billion rivaled total volume in 2012 through 2014. The major reason was HTA’s $2.2 billion acquisition of the Duke Realty healthcare portfolio in June, leaving the balance of first half acquisitions at $3.2 billion, consistent with first half volume in 2015 and 2016 – years with record overall sales.
When Nashville-based Healthcare Realty Trust (NYSE: HR) announced second quarter (Q2) earnings on Aug. 2, there was no hint that it had a major medical office building (MOB) portfolio acquisition in the works. In fact, President and CEO Todd Meredith seemed to suggest that the MOB space could be risky for imprudent investors.